Friday, December 29, 2006

I love Bowl Season....it's the most wonderful time of the year. Football all day every day for almost a week. Pure Bliss :o)

My Terps take on the Purdue Boilermakers tonight in the Champs Sports Bowl in Orlando. A bunch of my friends went down for the game. I would have loved to go, but plane tickets were $500 round trip because of the holidays and I don't think I would have been able to handle an 18 hour road trip.

I got a call from some of my friends down there though last night and apparently Terps fans took over Universal Studios and you could hear the Victory Song being sung from various lines for rides through out the park. SWEET!

The game is on at 8 tonight I think on ESPN (but I'm not 100% sure on that).

Running Notes: Got in a run today. Nothing too long. Probably about 2.5 miles or so. I ran the first 15 minutes but my knee started acting up so I took it to a run 2 minutes walk 30 seconds pace for the rest of the way, which seemed to help a little bit.

I think the next race I'm shooting for is the Cherry Blossom 10-Miler in Washington, D.C. during the Cherry Blossom Festival. I'm not sure of the exact date yet, it will be somewhere either in March or April, depending on the weather and when the trees start to bloom.

Anyway nothing more for now.

LET'S GO TERPS!

Friday, December 22, 2006

YAY! I went for my first run since being home on break today. I went a nice slow four miles in the rain. Not driving rain or anything, just a constant drizzle. It was pretty chilly out too and I always find it so hard to breath when it's cold out. I get a crazy burning sensation in my chest, but it actually wasn't too bad today, except when I was really breathing hard going up hills.

It felt good to be out again. I ran the first part of the route I used when I was in marathon training. Everything looked a lot different there though because, well it's winter and none of the trees have leaves and the golf course I run past didn't have anyone on it.

As far as the roommate surprise that I promised I'd update on (apologies again for the delay, I should have more time to post now that the semester is over!):

My boss at the gym at school told us at a staff meeting that she and some of her friends go to the pole-dancing aerobics class on Friday nights at a women-only gym not far from campus. It's five bucks to go on Friday evenings and she said not only was it a great work out but that it was a lot of fun too.

So I ran the idea past two of my other roommates to see what they thought. They loved the idea and so did another on of our friends and we all went pole-dancing. It was the most hilarious, fun work out ever. It was such a mixed bunch of people in the class to. There were a few people college-aged, but we were definitely the minority. There were way more people my mom's age there. But everyone was really friendly and it was a lot of fun.

We learned a few dance routine type things and at the end of the class they dimmed the lights and put on a disco ball and the instructor led us through the whole dance.

It was awesome and fun and we've decided we're going to go back again next semester because it was just too much fun not too.

In other fascinating news, my semester from hell is over. I've gotten four of my grades back (all A's....sweet!) and I'm still waiting on two more.

Yesterday I spent the day baking Christmas cookies and finishing up my Christmas shopping. Tonight I have a Christmas party with all my friends from high school. We've been having it every year since we were freshman in high school....so we're on like the 7th straight year or something like that. It should be a good time. I'm looking forward to seeing everyone that I haven't seen in a while.

I hope runs are going well for everyone and that everyone enjoys the holidays!!!!

Friday, December 08, 2006

Still haven't been running. Been hitting the gym slightly less often because the end of semester stuff is killing me. One of my professors assigned another paper due on Tuesday just this week. AHHHH! Like I need any extra work.

I taught my yoga class this morning and normally I leave and I'm like yay yoga was good today. But today was even better than usual. I got a whole bunch of really nice comments from my participants about how much they liked the class and how they were hoping I'd be able to teach more classes next semester because they liked me as an instructor :o) I won't lie, it made me smile to myself for the rest of the day.

Tonight, two of my roommates and another of our friends are taking my third roommate out for a "super secret special surprise" because she's going "abroad" (to Boston) next semester and we're going to miss her. It's going to be so extremely awkward, but so much fun. I will post later about what exactly we're doing in case my roommate happens to read this before we leave. (We've succeeded in keeping out secret this long, I'm not going to blow it now.)

But here's what she knows: She needs to bring $5 in cash. She has to wear athletic clothes because it involves movement and we are leaving our apartment at 6 tonight to get to where we need to be by 7.

Should be good times. Hope everyone is having better luck with their running than I am. I'm looking forward to break so that I can get back to it at home.

Thursday, November 30, 2006

I promise I haven't fallen off the face of the Earth. I've just been bogged down in tons of work (real big shocker there) as the semester comes to a close.

I haven't run in what feels like ages, mainly because it's dark by the time I get out of class. It's not like I haven't been doing anything though. I've still been getting to the gym. I'm not just sitting around on my butt. But I do miss having the time to run. The shorter days make it really tough when I have to be at class at 8 in the morning and don't get out until 5 p.m.

I mean I guess I could run on the treadmills at the gym, but that's so much more boring and monotonous than taking a kickboxing class or something like that.

I"ve also become a HUGE fan of yoga for cross-training. I am absolutely in love with it.

I'm so looking forward to the end of this semester and semester break when I will have time to run during the daylight hours! I'm not done until Dec. 20 though. So until then I guess I'll be sticking to my gym workouts.

Thursday, November 09, 2006

The weather here has finally cleared up. It's sunny and 70 outside today, which is such a nice change of pace from the past few days when it has been cold and grey.

I went out for a run yesterday despite the weather. It had rained all morning but stopped by the time I got out of my sports writing class. I was feeling so frustrated after that class because I think I've pretty much eliminated my chances of getting an A in the class, which sucks because I have never ever gotten a B in a journalism class ever. (Yea I'm a dork, I know). So I was upset about that and I came home and threw on shorts and a shirt and hit the road.

It was wet and I was a bit freaked out that I was going to slip on the wet leaves that were everywhere and twist an ankle or something, but I made it out and back in one piece without taking any spills.

But the run was tough. I only went for 25 minutes because my calf muscles were starting to tighten up pretty badly. I was going a lot slower than I usually go too. Maybe it was the weather, maybe it was my bad mood, maybe it's because my iPod battery was dead so I had no music to run with. I don't really know but it wasn't my best run ever, that's for sure.

I haven't done a lot of running since the marathon. This semester is kicking my butt. I'm counting down the days until I can go home for Thanksgiving and just take a break. I need to get away from school. All the work is making me a stress case and leaving with my about zero time to run which only makes the stress worse.

Since I work at the gym on campus teaching fitness classes I'm at least getting some activity and this week I've been trying to go early or stay late and take the class right before or after the one I teach, and it's helping a bit.

But I really miss running. I've actually started writing it in my planner on the days when I know I will be able to make time for it. How sad is that?

I'm really looking forward to this semester being over. It has just royally kicked my butt. I just need a breather away from the work. There has not been a week since I got here that I haven't had a test or some huge assignment due.

Only about five more weeks left though until it's over, and I'm counting down every single day.

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

I just got back from my first run since my marathon. Various things delayed it from happening sooner, including post-race soreness, getting sick, and then just being ridiculously busy with school these past two days. So it finally happened today.

The weather wasn't exactly ideal for this time of year. It was hot, like mid-70's and it's November. Not that I should be complaining I really do love the warmer weather. But it was just surprisingly warm for this time of year.

I felt a big sluggish half way through the run, but that could very easily be because I haven't run in two weeks. My legs felt heavy. But I'm sure it's just going to take me a little while to get back into the swing of things.

It was nice to get out and be running again though. I really did miss it.

In other amazingly exciting news, the ACC soccer tournament started yesterday. And even more importantly, my #4 ranked Terps are playing Boston College tonight who they lost to 3-1 during the regular season. The best part of all though is that the tournament is only about 30 minutes from campus and we're busying a boatload of people to the game tonight. I couldn't be more excited. I love Terp soccer. We have without a doubt the best soccer fans in the country. So I am super excited. Game starts at 8 p.m. and should be a good one!

GOOOO TERPS!

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

I have been sick. So so sick. I finally got medicine from the doctor on Monday, but all weekend I couldn't get out of bed. I had a 103 degree fever. I was achy with a headache and sore throat and just plain miserable.

So apparently marathons do a number to your immune system. I hadn't even thought about it, but I guess it makes sense. And my roommate's been sick and I guess I just picked up a more serious version of her disease. I should have taken vitamin C or something after the race. Or I should have just remembered to take my Flintstones vitamins consistently, but I like never ever remember.

And as a result, I got wicked sick. I had to leave our homecoming football game early on Saturday because I got yucky. And of course that means I haven't been able to run either, which is killing me. The extent of workouts that I've gotten in since the marathon have consisted of one abs workout and one yoga workout because I had to teach them at the gym. Otherwise, nothing. And it's making me stir crazy.

But I can't even manage to eat solid foods very well yet. It hurts my throat too much to swallow. So I've been living off a steady diet of chicken noodle soup and applesauce. One of my roommates works at Smoothie King and is hooking me up with a smoothie after her shift tonight. I'm quite looking forward to it.

I'm really hoping I can kick the sickies soon....it's HALLOWEEN!!! this weekend and so much going on and I don't want to miss out because I'm still sick. AHHH it's so annoying!

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

So the official marathon pictures are up online. Check them out HERE if you're interested.

I'm missing running. The soreness is starting to subside so I'm hoping that I can start running again soon.

I'm looking for my next race. Any suggestions?

Saturday, October 14, 2006

Baltimore Marathon Race Report

So...... I DID IT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I don't even know where to start. So I guess I'll just start at the start.

My mom and I headed up to Baltimore on Friday to pick up our bib numbers and race time chips and to hit the Expo (where I got a sweet Coolmax long sleeve shirt for $15). We grabbed a late lunch/early dinner at ESPNZone in Inner Harbor and spent some time walking around before heading back to the hotel, where we expected to be chilling for the rest of the night....

except.....Jess forgot to pack her watch. It was and still is sitting in a drawer in her apartment. So we ran back to the expo hoping they would have some on sale their, but they only had $50 Timex ones, and well there was no need for that. So we got extremely lost trying to find the closest Wal-mart. But eventually we found it and I got a cheap-o $7 watch, which worked just fine.

We both planned on getting to sleep early so that we could obviously have energy for the morning. I was antsy/nervous/anxious as heck though, so it didn't work out so well for me. I didn't eventually fall asleep only to be woken up at 1 in the morning by my new watch which had an alarm feature i was unaware of.

Woke up again at 5:45 to get ready for the race. It was a FREEZING 39 degrees outside. Average temp at start time for this marathon is 50. I chowed down a Power Bar and an English Muffin gulped down and some Gatorade.

I was so not sure what to wear but I went with capri tights and a long sleeve top with sleeves that are easy to roll up. They gave us complimentary gloves in our race packets which were money b/c we could just throw them out if we got warm during the race.

Used the porta-potties at the starting line like 3 times because I was so nervous. Found my pace group. I signed up to run with the 5:15 group, planning on staying with them for the first half and then dropping back for the second half on the hills.

8:00 a.m. and we were off and cruising. First three miles were completely uphill, never a fun way to start a race, but our pace group was killing our splits. We pretty much caught up to the group pacing to finish in 5 hours.

Mile 4 slight downhill into mile 5. Cruising along everythign is feeling awesome. I'm so energized and thrilled the pain in my calf from the previous day was not acting up at all. At mile 6 all of our pacers had to stop to use the bathrooms so another girl and I kept going together and we were still killing our split times. We were ahead by five minutes. We stayed together for most of the race.

The course flattened out around mile 7ish and stayed pretty flat through 14. We got to mile 13 and we were still five minutes ahead of the split we were supposed to be at. I finished the first half of the marathon in something like 2:30 (I don't remember the exact time, when they post the split I'll let you all know), which is ridiculous for me.

The second half though is pure hills. It's straight uphill from about 15.5 to 20 and then "rolling" (to be read mostly uphill with a hint of down on a rare occassion) until 25. Needless to say at this point in the race that was brutal. I did a lot of walking. Mile 19 was the last time I was under a split for the 5:15 pace.

By this point my feet were killing me. It was painful every time they hit the ground. But my roommate had this thing she kept saying the week leading up to race. She was going around saying, "My roommate ran a marathon, what's your's done?" and if she was feeling sassy she'd add a "what's your's done, bitch."

I'm not sure why I remembered that so vividly during the race. But since we weren't allowed to have music I just kept chanting that to myself over and over and over. It was weird but it totally took my mind off things. I also wrote half an essay for class that's due on Monday in my head as I was going. It was a damn fine essay so I hope I remember it.

I had a few goals this race. First and foremost was crossing the finish line. Second was running at least a small portion of every single mile. And third, was running the last quarter mile. I accomplished all of them. And I acutally ran way more of a quarter mile because these people at the end of the race were like the finish line's jsut around the corner....and well I was at the corner....and the finish line was not there. Not a happy moment for me. But I finished running and I was beaming like crazy.

My time, which I'm sure you all want to know by now, was 5:26:11 (by my watch) 5:26:16 by official time.

I have a blister running the entire length of my pinky toe (it didn't hurt at all during the race though so whatever it'll go away eventually) I am sunburned like crazy on my face. But no chaffing (thank you BodyGlide). The water and gatorade stops were my heros and well as the Gu stops. I've learned the Vanilla Bean actually is tolerable.

It was so cool seeing all the people cheering. There were some lonely spots were there was no one, or just one or two people spread out. But coming in through the end was the most amazing feelings. There were so many people and they were all cheering and holding signs and it was an awesome awesome moment.

I still can't really believe I did it. Back in April I could run 2.5-3 miles. And today I ran 26.2. It's crazy. I almost started tearing up twice in the race. I'm not sure why. Just emotional I guess. It's was an amazing experience. Nothing will ever top it!

Monday, October 09, 2006

I"ve been sick as a dog for the past 10 dayish, which means no running in the past 10 dayish because I couldn't breathe/broke into a coughing fit every five seconds. I'm really nervous about my marathon now. It's this Saturday (AHHH!!!!) and I feel like my training has slacked off quite a bit since I've gotten to school.

I went running this morning and my legs were feeling pretty fatigued by the end and it was only a shorty...just three miles. Makes me wonder how I'm every going to complete 26.2.

I'm really upset about the missed training time, but there wasn't much I could do. Some god-awful virus whipped around my apartment. Everyone got it, except my one lucky roommate who was popping vitamin C like it was her job.

I'm sure I'll still be able to finish, just not as well as I had hoped. It's my first marathon ever and I keep saying it's not about the time it's about crossing the finish line, but at the same time I want to know I did my best.

I guess I'm just nervous. 26.2 miles is quite a bit. But I'll finish. It'll be slow. It'll probably be painful. But I'll cross the finish line.

A bunch of my friends are coming to cheer me on and my roommates are making me a big sign. Haha they're the best. So I'll definitely have something to look forward to when I cross the finish line.

Oh and my mom decided in the summer that she was going to enter the half-marathon. (She's walking not running, she ripped her hamstring a few years back and hasn't been able to really run since.) We're hoping to finish around the same time because her race starts about 2 hours after mine, and I'll be going good and slow.

One thing I'm not looking forward to is the week after my marathon. I have four midterms in three days and I'm pretty sure marathon weekend won't allow for any studying to get done. That's going to be a rough week.

Monday, September 25, 2006

I love running. Like a lot.

I woke up this morning, not really wanting to roll out of bed. I was so sleepy. I have to stop going over to the boys apartment to watch Sunday Night Football and then not getting home til ridiculously late.

So needless to say, I was particularly thrilled about going out for a run. But after dragging myself out of bed and lacing up the shoes, I was out the door (and down the elavator) and finally outside. And it was beautiful.

Temps in the high 60's or low 70's, a bit warm in the sun, but nothing unbearable and glorious in the shade.

I started running and every felt awesome. My mood instantly perked up and I felt like I was just cruising, as if my legs were on auto-pilot and I wasn't doing any work out all. It was amazing, and I live for runs like that.

And of course now that I'm back in my apartment, I'm wide awake. And I feel great. And I want to go back outside. I'm actually looking forward to the 25 minute walk allll the way across campus to go teach aerobics classes at the gym today. Usually I dread it because it's so far away. But not today.

Man, I am in such a stellar mood. I love running.

In other extremely happy news. It was a good weekend in sports. Notre Dame knocked off MSU in what will probably become a football classic. After being outplayed the first three quarters, ND finally got some footing and exploded in the fourth with a 19 point quarter. The weather was miserable, driving rains, 30 mile an hour winds. The game was a mess. Brady fumbled two snaps. MSU missed a PAT. Dumb stuff that wouldn't have happened if it hadn't been raining. I was pacing in front of my TV like a mad woman as the final few minutes wound down.

Also, Philly teams kicked booty this weekend too. The Phils took the lead in the NL wildcare, which is totally sweet and the Eagles beat the 49ers. Two Philly wins in one day. But being a Philly fan I know not to get my hopes up too high or else I'll have my heart ripped out and stepped on. Yea, the life of a Philly fan is rough.

Any way today is going to be a great day. So I'm off!

Saturday, September 23, 2006

So today's run was my last "long" run before the big day. I'm officially in taper mode for the next two weeks. Today's run went pretty well, considering I'd been having all kinds of problems with shin splints, etc. in the days leading up to it. It was supposed to be a 20-miler, but I started feeling a slight tweaking in my knee and my legs were exhausted so I cut it short somewhere around 13 miles. I didn't think it was smart to push it this close to the race and risk getting hurt, especially since I'd been having problems. So my longest run to date was 18 miles. I still feel like I'll be ready for the marathon. It's three Saturday's from now, which gives me plenty of time to get in some quality shorter runs and taper and be ready to go on race day.

I'm also trying to find a sports massage therapist to make an appointment with for after the marathon because I noticed some tightness today and no matter how much I stretch nothing will get those deeper knots out like a good (albiet slightly painful) sports massage. Problem with being at school now, is that I don't know how shady any of the places in the phone book are. I don't want some creep-o touching my legs.

Things are starting to get into more of a flow with classes. I have my first exam coming up this Tuesday, but I don't think it will be that bad.

Notre Dame plays MSU tonight. 8 p.m. ABC. Justin (if I knew how to link to his blog I totally would) is in the MSU band, so we've had some all in good fun trash talking going on lately...so I guess we're going to see who gets bragging rights after tonight. (Although I'm pretty sure ND is beastly and has it locked down :O)

Alright I'm off to cram in some work before tailgating for my Terps! (yeaaa...where I actually go to school)

Wednesday, September 20, 2006

Today's run reminds me why I do it. I was a little worried about soreness in the leg area because I've been having major problems with shin splints and extrememly tight muscles lately so I went out really slowly. There was still a little bit of tightness there for the whole run, but nothing debilitating like Monday. I still ended up shortening my usual loop a bit and running the whole thing slower because I just wanted to take it easy, be sure everything was properly.

And it was beautiful at this morning. Accuweather told me it was a cool 60 degrees, but in the sun I'd say it was closer to 70. But it was still beautiful out there was just the slightest breeze and running in both the shade and the sun was enjoyable. It's so nice to see the temps starting to come down a little bit. I hope it stays nice and cool for a while now.

Marathon is officially in like three weeks. I'm nervous though because I kind of feel like all this lower leg pain is going to be a pretty big set back in training. I rescheduled the 20 miles I missed last week when I was in Texas for this weekend, and I'm so nervous about how that's going to go.

I can't believe after all this time training, the event is finally getting to be here. Only a few more weeks and this whole journey will be over. Not that I'll stop running. It will just be different because I won't have a specific race to be training for. (I won't miss losing a large chunk of my Saturdays to long runs though.) It's crazy to think I started training back in April and now it's almost October and time for the real deal.

It's good to be back to blogging. I missed it. Everything seems to be falling back into place after a few very strange out of whack weeks. I think I'm starting to find a sense of normalcy again. Thank goodness for that.

Tuesday, September 19, 2006

Hey everyone,
So it has been forever since I've written, and it's quite possible I've lost all of my readers, although I can't say I'd blame you. It's been a rough few weeks for me. My schedule has been insane and I haven't been able to get in the quality runs that I need. I've also been plagued with some nasty shin splints so even when I do get out to run, it usually doesn't go well.

That kind of has me freaked out with my marathon about four weeks away.

I lost a lot of running time when I was in Texas for a journalism conference last week. Everyday the conference started at like 8 in the morning and then there were things we needed to be at until late at night, which killed all time to run. In addition, I didn't have room in my suitcase to pack another pair of footwear, so even if I had time to run I didn't have sneakers. So I lost from Wed. to Sat. because of that.

I tried rebounding Monday with a run and got the worst shin splints ever about 10 minutes in. I pushed it for another 5 minutes but then was in too much pain to keep going and had to walk home and do some major stretching. It was so frustrating.

Also stregthen training and healthy eating have gone out the window in the past weeks. Everything has been so hectic. Although I'm trying to get back on track this week. After today, some of the craziness should calm down. I will have caught up on most of the work I missed and I'll be back to a semi-normal schedule, and hopefully my running and just general mood will improve. I have been stressssed out!

So again, sorry about my long absensce. I promise I'll try to catch up on everyone's blogs soon!

Saturday, September 02, 2006

So the stupid hurricane put a major damper on my long run today. I got stuck doing it on a treadmill. Gross. It was supposed to be 18 miles, but I ran out of change to feed my parking meter at about 16. And the boredom of running that long on a treadmill really was starting to get to me. Plus there was a huge soccer game #1 MD Terps vs #10 (i think) UCLA, and I wasn't really planning on skipping that. (P.S. we totally won because we are amazing!) So yea, running for 3.5 hours on a treadmill = tedious and boring as hell.

But if I'm going to look for the positives in this run....I was able to run a lot longer because the impact when running on a treadmill never bothers me as much as the impact of runinng on concrete. Also I kept the treadmill on no incline today because I figured I wouldn't really be able to handle much of one, so that made things easier too.

I'm pretty sore now though. Granted that could have a lot to do with the fact that I did absolutely no stretching afterwards because I was in such a hurry to make it to the soccer game on time (thank god the women's game before hand went into double over time and I didn't miss anything even though I was late).

That's going to come back and bite me in the ass tomorrow, I'm sure. But really the important thing here is, I got in my run, well most of it. It might not have been the most glamourous run ever, but I got it in and I was glad. I only have one more reallllly long run before the marathon. That's a 20 miler in two weeks. Everything else is 10 or less.

The marathon's only 6 weeks away....that's nuts!

Thursday, August 31, 2006

It seems like forever ago since I updated last, but I guess it wasn't really that long ago. Training has been going pretty well. The humiditiy broke a little bit and the temps are much cooler and I'm hoping it will stay that way until Saturday when I have a beastly 18 mile run. I'm going to drive around and try to find a course tomorrow. Hopefully I'll find something not too shady because I haven't really had any luck recruiting people to go with me.

I joined our running club at school too. I figured it'd be fun to have people to run with on my shorter runs and it'd be a good way to get to know some of the trails around campus (which are awesome to run on with people. Not the best idea to run them alone). Yesterday was the first practice and basically the club meets at five breaks into distance and pace groups and then runs. You go when you can. Some people can't make certain days because of class or other commitments. But it was cool getting to meet people and I think it will be fun.

I am a crazy crazy person and woke up at 5:30 this morning to strength train before my 8 am class. I've become addicted to working out in the morning before class and so I guess that's how I managed to drag my tired butt out of bed. But seriously working out in the morning might be the best thing ever because it just leaves me feeling like I've accomplished something, even if I get ntohing done the rest of the day.

So far my classes are eh. Well that's not true. Most of them sound pretty interesting/not that hard. There's one that I'm really nervous about and kind of stressed about. I feel a bit underqualified for the class. Everyone else in it has experience in that area and I just don't, so I feel like I'm starting off farther behind everyone. Maybe as a way to get past that I'll just keep thinking pshhh I'm training to run a marathon....what have you done with your life? LOL. That wouldn't be very nice though.

With classes and everything picking up I'm going to be pretty busy, but I'll try to stay on top of posting and keeping up with everyone else's posts.

Monday, August 28, 2006

We really need some type of vicious storm to knock out this humidity. Lately, my times have been crappy and being outside (especially running) has just been painful. There hasn't been one enjoyable thing about any of my recent runs, which kind of bums me out.

But whatever, the humidity will break at some point.

In other exciting news....today's my birthday! YAY! I'm finally 20. Not like I feel any older or anything. My friends and I are going out to Olive Garden tonight for dinner. Should be a good time all around. (I think it's one of the places where they sing to you....oh dear lord that's embarrassing.)

Sorry for such a short and crappy post. I have to be at training for my job (I teach fitnesses classes at the gym on campus) in a bit.

Saturday, August 26, 2006

Oh man Maryland's humidity is oppressive. I didn't think it would be that much worse than at home, but oh man it was unreal this morning. And stupid me didn't take a bottle of water to run with (I have good reasons: At home I never needed to carry water when I was only going six miles, and I just hate carry anything in my hands when I run.)

So to say the least, today's run was not all that enjoyable.

It's also weird to be running in a different area than I have been for the past three months. The hills are in all different places and it's playing goofy games with my head. Like at home, I would mentally know a hill was coming and could attempt to prep myself for it. Here I don't see the hills til I'm at the bottom of them....which doesn't leave much time for mental preparation.

All in all though, I guess it's good to mix it up. It's not like I'm going to know the race course. I mean I can look at the map and read the elevations, but it's not the same as getting out and running the course or at least parts of it before the race. And I'm just not going to have to a chance to do that. So perhaps running without the mental prep during some of my training will overall be a good thing for the marathon.

Fun new apartment side note: I cooked dinner for six people last night! Tilapia (it's a kind of fish) with steamed broccli and a friend brought a salad. And I didn't poison one of them or burn down the house and I actually got compliments on the food. Sweet! (For the record, that dinner was only the third time I'd cooked ever....heating leftovers/TV dinners in the microwave totally doesn't count.) So I'm actually starting to like cooking, which I thought would be the most annoying chore that goes along with moving into an apartment.

My last roommate moves in tonight! I'm so excited!!!!

Friday, August 25, 2006

The past few runs have gone pretty well. I've run twice at school since I've been back and I've found a solid 3 mile loop that I feel safe running. So for tomorrow's six miles I'm just going to run it twice. Next week though I'm not sure where I'm going to find an 18 mile loop that I feel safe to run. Maybe I'll be able to find a six mile loop or something to do three times. WHy does my school have to be in the most sketchacular place ever. It's way not safe for a girl to run by herself around here.

I had to tweak my schedule a bit this week because Wed. night I was out late. Way too late at a party. Hit the sack at about 3:oo a.m. decided I'd bump the run back until 9:00 instead of at 6:30. The alarm when off at 9:00 I thought screw it and turned it off. So when I woke up at noon, I cross trained and moved my run to this morning.

Tomorrow I've got the six miler and my third day of strength training this week. As far as the strength training goal goes, I've been pretty much dead on and haven't had any problems.

I've been eating way healthier too since I've been back to school and making my own food and stuff.

Here's the Wed. and Thurs. food stuff:
Wed:
Breakfast: Special K and a peach
Lunch: Yogurt and grapes
Dinner: Italian Chicken and Veggies

Thurs:
Breakfast (at 3:30 in the afternoon): Special K and a peach
Dinner: Mexican Chicken with veggies

In other exciting news, I finished decorating my room in the apartment today. I have a couple of framed Monet prints that I hung up. I've got one Picasso and one by Jack his last name starts with a V but I can't remember it. He paints the waltzers on the beach under umbrellas, eating dinner on the beach. I'm sure you've all seen one.

It's so nice to be back. I'm not looking forward to classes starting at all though.
First home soccer game is on Sunday! I'm stoked!

Wednesday, August 23, 2006

Oh man this past couple of days have been crazy let me tell you. I've done so much packing and unpacking in the last three days its not even funny. But now I'm finally back at school and pretty much settled into my apartment. One of my roommates is here, but the other two aren't getting here until the weekend.

Somehow though, despite all the craziness I managed to get all my runs in. I had an 8 miler on Saturday which I finished with pretty much no problem and wasn't even sore after. (It's so weird looking back to the beginning of training when 26 miles seemed impossible because my legs hurt so much after 8 miles runs that I couldn't walk the rest of the day. Now 8 mile runs come naturally. :o)

Monday was my last run at home so I made sure it was a solid 45 minutes. I was impressed with myself too because I ran faster than I normally do. Not that I had intentionally planned to do it, but I was hitting my mile markers faster than usual. I also through in a strength workout Monday morning, because I knew I wasn't going to have a chance to workout Tuesday what with moving in and everything.

Yesterday was completely taken over by move in. My parents and I woke up at 5:30 in the morning to drive to school. Got here about nine-ish and then they didn't leave until like 2:00. And after that left I still had boxes upon boxes to unpack. It took forever to organize the kitchen an then living room and then my bedroom. But somehow it happened.

Went to see Snakes on a Plane last night. Wayyyy more gory than I was expecting. But there were some totally hilarious parts too.

This morning's run was a little bit tough. I went 40 minutes, but it didn't feel as easy as it usually does, and my left arch was killing me by the end. I'll be sure to massage out the arch and stuff. And as far as the run not being easy, it's quite possible that it will just take me a little while to adapt to a new running environment and iron out some solid routes.

I'll get back to posting my healthy food tomorrow. With packing and moving, I've been eating at really strange times and bizzarre meals (yesterday lunch was a handful of grapes....sooo yea).

Hope everyone's having awesome runs!

Thursday, August 17, 2006

Well today's run was slightly better than yesterdays, but it was still painful and I still had some wicked pain. And I had strecthed for 30 minutes last night before I went to bed.

But I think I may have found the source of my problem. I really noticed the jarring today when I was running. And I think it's time to get some new shoes. I'm pretty sure the padding in mine is shot. I've been running in the same shoes since....the beginning of April. So that means I've run with them through all of April, May, June, July and about half of August. So it might be time to retire them and get a new pair.

I'm actually a little bit excited about this because I love the local running store. They analyze your old shoes for the way you pronate and based on that pick out other shoes for you and then they let you put them on and test them outside. So I'll probably try to hit that up tomorrow after work. I've got to go soon because I'm leaving to head back to school on Tuesday (oh so excited for that!)

After my annoyingly painful 30 minute run this morning, I squeezed in a quick strength workout. So that's two down for the week with only one more to go. I'll probably do it Saturday after my run.

Eating better foods has been going pretty well too so far. Granted today is only day three of this lol.

Anyway here's yesterdays list food:
Breakfast: bowl of Special K
Lunch: Hummus with pita from the restaurant by work
Snack: Three finger licks of choc. pudding from a co-worker (no lie she gave me some and I ate three licks off my finger lol...ohh the manners)
Dinner: Chicken in BBQ sauce with sauteed summer veggies (peppers, onions, mushrooms, and zuccini....delicious)

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

Oh man today's run was awful. I'm not sure if you could actually even call it a run. More like a step or two followed by shooting pain in the front of one shin and in the back of the other followed by walking to attempt to make the pain go away. It was horrible.

I started out same pace as always and I was a little sore, but I chalked it up to the early morning stiffness that usually goes away after about five minutes. Wellll my friends, this pain did not go away and right around minute 13 I gave in to the pain and started walking. More like hobbling.

I found a telephone pole on the side of the road that I was hoping to stretch out on, but I was too tight to even stretch, so I gave up and just kept walking (at this point it was shorter to keep going the way I was going than to turn around and walk the rest of the way back home). All I wanted to do was get back. It hurt so much.

What a waste of a run. I was so pissed off. It was supposed to be a 45 minute run. With all my slow walking and hobbling it took me 45 minutes to get back from my 13 minute run out. Honestly I am so pissed off about this wasted run.

So I came home and did a strength training workout. At least the day wasn't a complete waste. Ugh how frustrating.

As promised here's yesterday's list of food. I did pretty good on day one of clean up the crap I eat!
Breakfast: Bowl of Special K (my favorite cereal ever lol)
Lunch: Raspberry yogurt and a cup of dry cereal (we were out of apple cinnamon rice cakes :o(
Dinner: Tuna salad on a whole wheat pita with lettuce onions and a little bit of Miracle Whip.

I have a short run scheduled for tomorrow....either 30 or 35 minutes and I'll probably do another strength workout. Hopefully tomorrow's run doens't suck as much as today's did. When I get home from work I'm going to majorly stretch out, which will hopefully help!

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

Sadly my wonderful weekend at the beach is over. I had a great time and even managed to squeeze in a quality run on the boardwalk. The weather was gorgeous and it was nice to just lounge around in a beach chair and worry about nthing all day.

Now on to the exciting news. My 14 mile run was......GREAT! It only took me five minutes longer than my 13.1 two weeks ago. Not because I ran a ridiculously speedy, but more because I was able to run a lot more and walk a lot less. I ran straight through the first 8 miles, walked for a short bit of the 9th and then ran a decent amount of the rest. I did have to walk some of killer hills toward the end. My poor legs were just exhausted.

Besides general soreness I felt great afterward. I wish I could emulate this run over and over again, because it went perfectly. It took me two hours 54 minutes and 58 seconds. The worst part of the whole thing was the 5:20 wake up call.

As far as my other two goals go, the strength training is on track. I even did my routine one morning in the hotel at the beach. I was going to wake up early to do it again before work today, but I was too wiped out, so I've got it scheduled for after work.

The beach killed my first few days of cleaning up my eating. Eating out every night with dessert on the boardwalk doesn't exactly make for the best food fuel. So I'm starting over on that today. And so far so good. Today's complete food list will be up tomorrow.

Getting my haircut tonight!!! :o)

Thursday, August 10, 2006

Oh I'm am totally loving this weather. It's so much nicer than last week. I actually felt a bit chilly when I left my house this morning! Alleluia! Anyway today's run was a quickie. 30 minutes out and back. My legs were feeling a little sluggish in the beginning though, but I think it's just because it was early in the morning. Overall the run went well. My mom was out for a walk and we crossed paths toward the end of my run.

I threw in some lifting this morning too. I'm trying really hard to stick with three days of lifting each week. I used to be so good about it. I'd do it religiously without fail (and at one point I even used to like weight training more than cardio....yeah not sure what I was thinking there) But I've majorly slacked off any weight training at all and it's I've really started to notice lately.

So I sort of have two new training goals: One is to stick with the weight training three days a week and the other is to majorly clean up my eating habits. I've sort of let them slack off as summer went on. (come on it's summer who doesn't love the occasional...or rather frequent....ice cream?) But it's been killing my training. Ice cream doesn't really fuel the body that well. So I'm hoping to clean that up too. Stick with foods that actually give me energy to get through work outs. I might start keeping one of those food journal thingies because half the time I don't think I realize I'm eating all the crap that I do. I don't know we'll see.

But anyway I'll be sure to keep everyone posted on how that goes. I somehow think the weight training goal is going to be much easier for me to stick with than the better eating (I'm a sucker for all things sweet).

In other fun news, I'm leaving for a long weekend at the beach tomorrow! WHOOOO HOOOO! I'm excited. But that also means I have to bump my long run up a day. Normally my long run day is Saturday, but I know myself well enough to know that there is absolutely no way I will get up early for a 14-mile run when I'm at the beach. It's just not going to happen.

So I'm going to go tomorrow before I leave. That way I get it in and it's all taken care of, and the only run I'll absolutely have to do at the beach is a much more vacation-friendly 3.5 miles.

I'm a little nervous about the 14 mile beast tomorrow morning. I'm going to have to get up way early because I have a doc. appointment at 10:15 before I leave and I'll need to finish the run before that. So yea....5:00 in the morning wake up call....I'm sure that will be really enjoyable.

I'm going to be sure I stock up on PowerBars and Gatorade before I head to work today so that everything is all set and for tomorrow. (Yea I'm one of those people who lays out their clothes the night before their long runs so that I don't have to think about anything first thing in the morning)

Big note to self: Charge iPod. I keep forgetting and I haven't been able to run with it the past two days as a result. There's no way I'm getting through 14 miles without some tunes.

Anyway, that's all my ramblings for now. I have a feeling this day at work is going to be never-ending because I'm so excited for the beach tomorrow. Yay for the sun and the sand and the ocean!!!

I'll be sure to update on the 14-miler sometime when I get back!

Saturday, August 05, 2006

Everything about today's run was awesome. The weather was beautiful at 5:30 on in the morning. Not too sunny with a slight breeze. It was actually a little bit chilly when I started, which was definitely a welcome change from the awful heat and humidity that's been going on the past couple days.

From there everything was perfect. I had six miles scheduled and I cruised through them with no problem at all. I could have gone farther. I felt like I could have kept running for ever. Nothing was hurting and I didn't feel overly exhasuted. It was the perfect run.

I did stop at six miles though. I don't want to risk injury. With everything going so well in today's run there was no way I wanted to risk messing that up. So I called it quits after six miles and then did some strengthen training, which I've started again after a long long time away from it.

But it was the perfect run and everything just felt right. I didn't even listen to music for the first 2.5 miles. I had my iPod with me, but I hadn't turned it on.

This might be the best run I've ever been on.

Hope you all have a great weekend!

Wednesday, August 02, 2006

WARNING: I'm about to bitch and moan about the weather for a bit, so if you're sick of reading about that, skip to the next paragraph. Holy Mother of Pearl it is hot outside. I was out running by 6:40 this morning and it was already like 86 degrees, sunny and extremely humid. It's going to get into the triple digits here today. Shoot me now. That's like impossible weather to run in. It feels like there's no oxygen in the air....just a whole lot of water! Unreal!

Okay, done with my bitching and moaning. Overall, today's run went so-so. I ran more than half, which was good, but my legs crapped out somewhere around 30 minutes. So I ended up walking the last ten. (I'm going to blame it on the weather conditions...sorry not trying to bitch and moan).

It feels good getting up and running before work. I'm not sure why I stopped doing that for so long. I mean I know I got busy with work or everything, but lately I've felt like I've been a complete marathon training slacker. And it feels good to be back on track.

Nothing like running first thing in the morning to get your day started off on the right foot. Granted it may be hard as all hell dragging my tired butt out of bed (like it was this morning. I actually re-set my alarm for an hour later with plans to go back to sleep and skip today's run....not sure what motivated me to get out of bed, but something did.)

Seriously though, running in the morning gives me such a sense of accomplishment. It's a great feeling walking into work thinking, well even if I don't get through whatever I need to today, I got my run in so I accomplished something good today.

Anyway that's all my rambling for now. Hope you're all surviving this horrible heat wave!

Monday, July 31, 2006

I have been sorely neglecting my poor blog here. But then again at the same time I've been slacking a bit with the running too. Last week was crazzzzy. Work was nuts. Normally I don't have to be in until 10 because we're journalist and we can't be working if no one is up for us to call and talk to. But on Tuesday I had to be at Lehigh at 8:30 to cover something and then Thursday I was at Eagles camp at 7:45 to get press credentials and there was nooooo way I was getting up to run before that.

I ran last Monday and Wed and Saturday. So I mean I guess I didn't slack that much. But I didn't cross-train like I was supposed and I skipped Thursday's run. So it really seemed like I've been a major lazy bum.

This week though we're gonna get things back to normal. I don't have any early work days, which means I have no excuse to not run in the morning before it gets ungodly hot out like it has been. If it gets to 100 degrees on Wed. I might cry a little bit. (Okay not really) I love summer, but seriously there's a point where it gets to be a bit tooo hot.

Today's run went pretty well. I felt a little bit sluggish because it was early and extremely hot already, but I managed to push through and run the whole time, and I felt really good afterwards.

As far as other exciting news, you may have all picked up on my mention of Eagles camp earlier in the post. Well I am a huuuuge Eagles fan and for my internship at the paper I got to go to camp and stand on the field with the rest of the media and then interview players afterwards. It might have been my coolest jouranlistic experience yet. It was so neat to be like three feet away from the guys I've been watching on TV forever.

And it was kind of cool because the Eagles just picked up a guy that graduated from MD the day before I was there. So I saw him all suited up in his Eagles stuff, which was pretty neat. (Note: He's been out of practice ever since with a pulled hamstring)

As far as my thoughts on the Phillies trade, I think we could have gotten a better deal for Abreu. And I can't believe just how bad we got beat today. Pathetic.

Anyway, I promise to try to update more often now that things have slowed down around here. I also promise (to myself mostly) to stick with my training plan and not slack off so much.

Saturday, July 22, 2006

I completed my 13.1 miles today in about 2 hours and 50 minutes. It was a bit longer than I had hoped it would take, but from the get go I knew today wasn't going to be one of my strongest runs. I was able to run the first 5 miles fairly smoothly, but somewhere around 5.1 or 5.2 my knee started acting up. So I figured it was time to slow it down and walk for a bit.

Well that was the beginning of the end I guess. Miles 6 and 7 I was able to mix a decent amount of running in with the walking, but when I hit mile 8 it was mostly walking the rest of the way with maybe a minute or two of running during each of the remaining miles.

My hips were hurting, my ankles were hurting, my knees were hurting and it just wasn't happening today. I was really glad I was at least able to finish the distance though. It might have been slower than I wanted to go, and I might not have run as smoothly as I hoped, but I finished a half-marathon of distance today. And that seems like a pretty big accomplishment when to think the farthest I'd ever run before I started training was 3 miles.

I'm all kinds of sore now though. So it's time to go sit downstairs and get some major icepack action going on.

Friday, July 21, 2006

This hasn't been the best running week ever. I've been a major running slacker. As in I didn't do the two running work outs on my schedule because I've been soooo exhausted in the morning and it's been unbearably hot at night. So, all in all, I've been a slacker. But it was an easy week because it was tapering down to a half-marathon tomorrow. Granted I'm not running in an actual race, I'm still doing the distance. So tonight after work I have to go home and plot out 13.1 miles for tomorrow.

Interesting thought I figured I'd share. I was at the doctor the other day and I told him about this little mole that I had developed on the back of my ear. He said it was probably harmless but he wanted to remove it just in case. Well my friends removing it requires needles and I don't do well with them at all. So I had a minor freak out. Anyway I'm scheduled to get said thing removed in like two weeks ahh.

But the nurse made a really interesting comment to me. She asked me if I was a runner. I said yes. And she goes I knew it. Runner's freak out about needles. She explained it had something to do with our heart rates being lower to start with and then increasing a lot when we're around/being pricked by needles. She said a ton of runners pass out because of that. I'm not sure what I think of that. I mean I loooove to be able to use it as an excuse now. But what does everyone else think? Do you all freak out around needles? Or is that just me? I'm just really curious because I thought it was just such a strange connection.

Anyway hope everyone has happy runnings this weekend. I'm nervously anticipating my 13.1.

Tuesday, July 18, 2006

Fun weekend. It was great seeing all my friends in MD, even the ones I only got to see for a few minutes.

I did 20 hours of yoga this weekend! 20 hours!!! That is a lot of yoga. I always thought yoga was supposed to be nice and relaxing and you'd leave all zen'd out. No way man, I was sore! And sitting in the car yesterday driving home (even though it only took about 2.5 hours) did not help the situation.

Yesterday was scheduled for a run, but that didn't happen because of being in MD and then driving home and busy busy. Today was crossing training, which I might get in, but really I don't have very high hopes for it. I am exhausted and feel like I could fall asleep at my desk at work (that would be very very bad).

Tomorrow though I'll be back on track. 13.1 miles on Saturday. I'm nervous that's a lot. An entire half marathon. Yikes. I think it's probably still supposed to be ridiculously hot this weekend so I'm going to have to wake up insanely early. If I remember I'm going to look for some gel or PowerBars and Gatorade because I don't think it'd be a very smart idea to run without it.

Anyway, lunch break is almost over. Time to get back to work.

Thursday, July 13, 2006

Whew, this humidty is nasty. It feels like running through a solid wall of water. There's so little air to breathe and no breeze. Nasty. At least it wasn't sunny this morning too.

The run went pretty well. It was a short one. First run I've done since I went to the massage therapist. Holy crap, I'm finding new bruises everyday. She wasn't kidding when she said I'd be bruised and sore for a few days. Youch!

I'm mixing up my training schedule a bit and doing my long run tomorrow. The reason for bumping the long run up a day is because tomorrow I leave for MD! I'm so excited. I'm going to back to campus for the weekend to take a yoga certification. So I'll be doing yoga from 8 in the morning to 6 at night on Saturday and Sunday (which leaves little time for running...so I'll chalk those up as two awesome crossing training days). But the best part of the weekend is that a whole bunch of my friends are going to be in Md. that weekend too, including my roommate who is flying in from her internship in Lexington, Kentucky! I am so excited! It's going to be such a great time!

The only things standing between me and the best weekend ever is the awful water aerobics class I have to teach tonight (if the participants smiled once during the whole class it might be better, but they never look happy) and my six-miler tomorrow. I somehow think my run is going to be less painful than the hour-long unhappy fest tonight. Sad, but true.

Just need to get through those two things and it's a complete weekend of freedom and fun times! I cannot wait!

Tuesday, July 11, 2006

Yesterday's run went well. I tackled this beastly hill that I've always wanted to try but was discouraged by the lack of ways to get back down (the only way is on a fairly busy road). But I thought what the heck, I'm going to give it a try and let's hope I don't get hit by a car.

It wasn't too bad until about .1 mile from the end of the road. You think it's starting to flatten out and then you get this nasty little kick up. The road is at least .3 miles, it might be more, but I forgot to clock it in the car on my way to work this morning. Glad I did that part in the beginning of the run.

The humidity was intense. That has to be the worst part of summer running.

Had my massage today. I can't say it felt good while it was happening, but everything feels much looser now. I had no idea my legs were so tight. My left leg was what had been tight and bothering me most, but I almost screamed when she started on my right IT band. Holy crap that was some pain. My right quad is a little bruised now, but she warned me that it probably would be.

I might start doing the massages occassionally now. My massage therapist said I had a lot of lactic acid build-up. Never a good thing for a runner. Massages help flush all that crap out. So, we'll see.

If anyone is in the mood for a good laugh, I highly recommend checking out the most recent post in Running in Place: Possession is Theft.

Saturday, July 08, 2006

Holy crap holy crap holy crap! I just ran the entire 10 miles. I've never been able to run the entire length of my long runs. I'm so excited! I would jump up and down and do a little dance....except my legs are feeling those 10 miles right now are a just a bit too tired for any sort of dancing.

I am amazed. Seriously, I don't know how I did it. I didn't have to walk up a single hill. Not one. And I live in a very hilly place and have to tackle some beastly hills.

I never ended up finding gels in time for the run. So instead, I ate half a PowerBar before I left (not quite as nasty as I expected) and ran with a 32-oz bottle of Powerade Option (their version of Propel) and I seemed to do alright. I mean duh my legs were tired at the end, but between the PowerBar and the Powerade, my energy wasn't really lacking.

I'm also especially pleased because I was able to do the entire 10 miles in two hours. Well actually about a minute or so less than two hours. That was a big deal for me, because after I hurt my knee earlier this summer, I didn't think I would be able to recover to a 12-minute mile pace that quickly. And I certainly didn't think I'd be able to keep it up over the course of 10 miles. (I really need to get rid of all these negative thoughts!)

But I did and I'm pretty much elated at the results. And I'm not in extreme amounts of pain either. My knees are a bit sore, but I'll ice them down and that should definitely help there. My calves were tight but I stretched them out pretty good and they're feeling much better now. I didn't ice bath it after my run today, for whatever reason I just wasn't feeling the ice bath.

The rest of the weekend looks to be pretty stellar as well. I've got a graduation party to head to later this afternoon, and tomorrow some of my friends and I are going down to Citizens Bank Park to tailgate and watch the Phillies game. Should be a great time because I haven't seen any of my college friends since early June.

Anyway, I'm off to go bask in the glory of this run!

Friday, July 07, 2006

So tomorrow is a 10-miler. I'm a little nervous because that is far!!!

Last night when I was coming home from my run my neighbor (who is also a runner) stopped me and was just asking how training was going and such. I told him I had 10 scheduled for tomorrow and he recommended I take an energy gel with me and use it at about mile 5. He said they work wonders.

Figuring I'd take his advice I set out on a mission today to find some. I hit two grocery stores and a CVS and came back with nothing. No energy gels. At the last grocery store I figured I'd need something for an energy boost in the middle of my run, so I settled for a PowerBar. Unfortunately they do not taste good, but it will be better than nothing. I really wish I could have found some of those energy gels though.

So I guess I'm on a mission to find them for next week. Anyone have any suggestions on where I might be able to track some down? I would really appreciate it.

On another note, I took some more advice from a note someone left me and scheduled myself a theraputic massage for my legs. It's on Tuesday, and I'm hoping it helps. My mom recommended the lady I'm going to because my mom goes to her for something else and says she's really good. It'll be nice to finally have my muscles relaxed.

I'm enjoying finally seeing the sun again too. It seems like the rain has disappeared, at least for a few days!

Hope everyone has awesome weekend runs!

Thursday, July 06, 2006

I didn't run this morning. A nice little knot in the back of my left calf wasn't going to let that happen. I'm going to try to get out tonight after dinner, so hopefully I'll be feeling better than.

In other news, I was checking out the website for the Baltimore Marathon, just to see if there were any updates or anything. And I found out they were going to have pace groups, which made me really excited, because it will be soooo nice to have people to run with the whole time who will be going at a similar, very slow pace.

I'm not a fast runner. Since my really bad knee injury last summer, I've been running between 12-13 minute miles. There's a pace group that will finish the marathon in 5:15, which if I did the math correctly is about a 12 minute mile. (If that math is really wrong I wouldn't be all that surprised).

But assuming it's correct math, I could potentially finish the marathon in 5:15, which would be a time I would be pretty happy with. So I think I will probably register with a pace group when I pick up my race packet and stuff.

I had never really considered using the pace groups before, but I don't know it seems like a great idea. And it will be soooo nice having someone help me keep pace, because it's not something I'm great at.

So that was my fun little discovery for the day!

Tuesday, July 04, 2006

So for cross-training today I found this cute little boot camp-like workout in a magazine and thought, what the heck I'll give it a try. It's something different. And surprisingly it turned out to be a lot of fun. I kind of felt like a little kid in gym class. It was a mix of all kinds of calisthetics (that's probably spelled horribly wrong...sorry) -- lots of jumping jacks and moutain climbers and high knees. (So much for giving my legs a break on cross training days) But it was fun. It might have been more fun if I did it outside instead of in my basement, but I slept in today (twas a beautiful thing) and by the time I woke up it was about 90 degrees and way sunny, so that wasn't happening.

And best of all, all the jumping and high impact stuff didn't really bother my knees and my calves didn't tense up too bad. Maybe all the extra stretching I've been doing has actually been helping out. So I'm feeling pretty good right about now, and have a positive feeling about tomorrow's run.

Anyway, I'm off to two 4th of July parties (must remember to not eat too much dessert to avoid horrible crashes when coming down off sugar high....see post about brother's graduation party).

That's all for now! Hope everyone has a great 4th!

Monday, July 03, 2006

After my run did not go so well today because of incredibly sore calves and shins, I decided to take some advice from the messages people left on my last post. I stretched for what seems like forever, but in reality was only about 40 minutes. I think I must have done every stretch in the book. And then I found one of those back massager thingys...and tried it out on my calf muscles. I'm not sure if it did any good, but right now as I'm sitting here my calves don't feel quite as tight.

All the same, I'm still glad tomorrow is a cross-training day that way I can rest up the legs and hopefully have a better run on Wed.

(sorry this post is so short, I really hate writing lots of negative posts, so I'm trying to keep it to a minimum. Crossing my fingers so I have happier things to write about soon)

Wednesday, June 28, 2006

I think the rain we've been stuck with since Saturday is finally moving out of the area. It will be nice to be able to get runs in again at their regularly scheduled time. Yesterday I woke up before work and went out running....sans iPod (I know shocker!!!) because it was misty and I didn't want to chance my iPod getting ruined. It was supposed to be about 40 minutes but I think only ended up going about 35. I don't wear a watch when I run so I sort of have to guesstimate based on the time I leave my house and the time I get back.

Today it was pouring and flooding everywhere in the morning (it took me 45 minutes to get to my internship...usually only takes about 15 or 20... because I had to make about 5 detours because roads were closed) So needless to say I did not get a run in before work. Maybe that worked out for the best though because I have been very sore lately and my left calf muscle has been cramping up like mad. It's just been so tight. And my knees are starting to get a little sore again so I'm not really sure what's going on there either.

Instead I went running tonight after dinner. Again a nice 40 minutes, nothing too strenuous, but oh man did my left calf kill. It was some of my worst running ever. I just felt miserable the whole time and wanted to turn around and go home. I'm not sure what's going on. Running is usually so enjoyable, but lately it's been such a chore what with the weather and the aches and pains.

Hopefully now that it looks like the weather is going to clear up things will start to get back on track. I'm going to try stretching even more after my runs, in hopes that it will keep some of the extra tightness at bay.

Other things have beena bit out of whack too. I've been so run down and exhausted lately. Last night I went to bed at like 9:00 p.m. No joke and slept until 6:30 when I saw it was not possible to run and then went back to sleep until like 7:45 and still felt exhausted. I don't like this, it's definitely not helping my running at all.

Hopefully I'll have more positive things to post soon!

Monday, June 26, 2006

Ew today was not a good day. It rained/poured all day and the two hours it wasn't I was babysitting. So that means I did not get my run in today. Now I feel sluggish and blah and ew. And I ate cake left over from my brother's graduation party, and you know how when you don't eat high sugar foods for a while and then you do and you get that major sugar high and crash. Yea, I'm feeling that for sure. So all in all it's been a blah ick day.

But tomorrow, no matter how tired and gross I'm feeling, I'm dragging my booty out of bed and running before heading to my internship. So on that note, I'm heading out!

Saturday, June 24, 2006

Today was a distance day, and I didn't think it was going to happen because of the weather. There were flash floods and wicked thunderstorms alllll day long and somehow my teeny tiny town got lucky enough to get nothing more than a few showers. Which left me with a solid two hours of running in the mist and rain, which is much better than running in the incredibly hot sun. Unfortunately my iPod died about half way through the nine miles (it's not waterproof and neither is the case....oopsies...don't worry though, it's all better now). But somehow I made it the last 4.5 miles without music.

I'm not really sure how that happened because I cannot run without music. I just can't do it. So it was by some miracle that I was able to finish with nothing but the thoughts in my head as my music.

I walked a little bit less than I did last week on my distance day, which I was proud of, but I still walked some of the hills because there was no way i would have made it the whole distance if I'd run them. I'm feeling pretty good now. No major aches and pains, although my knees are a little sore. I'm sure by Monday they'll be ready to go though.

The ice bath I took after the run was amazing. Seriously my legs were about ready to fall off and I just plopped down in a tub of freezing cold water and four trays of ice cubes (it's all the trays I've got) and instantaneously they felt better.

So all in all it was a pretty successful day. Tomorrow is my younger brother's graduation party and it's supposed to rain all day. Not sure how 80 people (we have a really large family and groups of family friends) are going to fit in this house, so I'm crossing my fingers for no rain. It'll be nice to see everyone though, especially my baby cousin (okay she's actually 4 now, but she'll always be the baby).

Well that's all I've got for now. Hope everyone else had awesome runs/cross-trainings!

Thursday, June 22, 2006

Squeezing one in before the rain

Got this morning's run in right before it started to downpour like crazy. Literally about 10 minutes after I walked back inside it started raining. I wouldn't have minded some of that rain while I was still running because oh man was it humid. Hopefully this wonderful downpour will break the humidity because it has been unreal lately.

I had to walk again at the very end of my run. For whatever reason my legs were just exhausted and were like "We can't run anymore." It wasn't really a big deal, it was only about 5 minutes of walking tops, but still, I hate having to stop and walk.

So I've fallen in love with icebaths. Granted the initial shock of the freezing cold water isn't all that fun, but when I get out, my legs feel like I hadn't really run at all. I only have time to squeeze them in on Mondays and Saturdays though because I don't have time for them when I've got to get to work the other days. I highly recommend them to everyone, and I promise they aren't as bad as they sound.

Anyway, I'm off to get ready for work. Best of luck on all your runs today!

Monday, June 19, 2006

Humid run and a new set of wheels

Today's run went okay. I went out at 6:40 in the morning and seriously the humidity was unreal. I felt I walked into a wall of water. It was sooo heavy, and it made it really tough to breathe. Never the less, I finished my run, even though I had to go really slow. I keep thinking this waking up at the crack of dawn (at least for me) and running will help me beat the heat and humidity, but so far it hasn't really seemed to be working, which is unfortunate because I am one of those people who must workout before they do anything else or else I find a million and one reasons to skip my training for the day.

Tomorrow's a cross-training day, which is nice because I won't have to worry about the heat and humidity. I'm planning on doing some upper body strength work to give the legs a rest. They could use it.

In other really really exciting news, my dad and I finalllllly bought my car today!!! She's a beauty. '03 Silver Ford Taurus (silver is my favorite car color). Looks like brand new. I'm really excited. If gas wasn't so bloody expensive I'd have taken her cruising today, but oh well, I'm sure I'll plan a road trip in due time to take her on!

Saturday, June 17, 2006

Longest run yet

I DID IT! I went for 8 miles! Granted I couldn't run the whole thing and had to stop and walk occasionally, but still I don't care I was just so excited to actually be able to keep moving forward for that long. When I got back home I wanted to do a little dance because I was just that excited, but welllll I was also exhausted. So collapsing onto a chair was looking a lot better than dancing around! :o)

I felt pretty good afterwards. I mean my legs were obviously exhausted (and still are) but otherwise I wasn't feeling any major aches and pains. At least not right away.

Now my knees are a little sore, but nothing too horrible. So I've been icing them. Basically my lower body just feels stiff, and I've been stretching and stuff so hopefully that will help stem some of that.

Tomorrow is a rest day, which should give me plenty of time to recover for Monday's run.

I was really proud of myself for being able to finish! I still can't believe I did it. I had all kinds of doubts that my knee wasn't going to hold up or that I would just get to tired and not get anywhere close to 8 miles, but I did and I'm quite impressed with myself. The only negative aspect of the whole run was how horribly strong the sun was. I went running at 7 in the morning, hoping to get out and back before it got too hot and sunny. No luck. I was out for no more than 15 minutes before the sun started beating down and unlucky for me a lot of where I run isn't very shaded (blasted suburbia and all it's developments with no trees), but even with the really strong sun I managed to finish!

What a day what a day!

Following the run was car shopping, and I think I might have finally found something affordable that drives nicely. I drove an Impala LS today....oh man it drove like a dream. But it was a 2000 with 51,000 miles and they were asking 10,400 and wouldn't drop the price anything below that. So, unfortunately I won't be getting that car. I'm afraid to say which car I might be getting for fear of jinking it. I have had awful luck in the car shopping department lately.

P.S. The officials in the US's World Cup game today sucked something awful! But we ended with a tie, so at least we get one point. ***Crosses fingers for a better game against Ghana***

Friday, June 16, 2006

Solid week of training

So far this week has gone really well training wise. Got up every morning at 7 to run or cross-train(except Monday and today because I didn't have to be at work. So Monday I got up at 8 to run and today....I'll get around to cross-training at some point), and there have been no major aches and pains.

Tomorrow is distance day and frankly I'm a little nervous. I've got 8 miles scheduled, but with time off because of injuries and stuff I don't know how that's going to go. My mom keeps telling me I should back off and do less than 8, but I'm afraid if I do that I'll fall even farther behind than I already am. Although if I do the 8, I risk getting hurt again. So I'm in a bit of a pickle. I guess my plan for now is to plan on doing the 8 and then just seeing how it goes when I'm out there. If I'm feeling good I'll do the whole thing. If not, I can always shorten the workout. I do not want to be laid up with another injury because as you know from a previous post, that frustrates the heck out of me.

In other exciting news, my first story that I wrote for my internship was published today, on the front page of the section!!! Here's a link to it, but it looks much prettier in the actual paper with all the pictures so I recommend looking at it there if you can.: http://www.mcall.com/features/custom/hg/all-hg-h-tassels-061606,0,6062821.story. (I'm no good at HTML coding, so just copy and paste it into your little web address bar).

Alright, that's all I've got for now. I'm making a little vow to try to update this thing more often. I used to be so good about it!

Sunday, June 11, 2006

Getting back out there

So Friday I went out for a test run. Only about a half an hour. I went really slow probably only covered about 2 miles, maybe a little more. I wasn't really keeping track of time or distance or anything, I was more trying to be sure everything was in working order.

My knee felt pretty good throughout the whole thing. I didn't notice any substantial problems. I took Saturday off because I didn't want to push my luck. And today I just got back from an hour long swim. Everything's feeling pretty good. I didn't lose too much of my endurance (or well so far it doesn't seem like it) so I think I'm going to pick my training back up tomorrow. I'm going to have to back up in the training schedule a little bit, but I don't think it will cause too much of a problem. At least I hope not. Maybe I'm just being overly optimistic now because I was so pessimistic in my last post.

But I'm hoping from here until October 14, everything will work properly. No more freak injuries and sicknesses.

YAY for being able to run again! **crossing my fingers and hoping tomorrow goes as well as Friday**

Saturday, June 03, 2006

Knee issues

Ok, so honestly I haven't dropped off the face of the earth. Although it sort of seems like it. I've been dealt a pretty big set back to the running schedule/marathon training. First there was finals week, and although I was able to get out a few times during the week, it def. wasn't enough and I fell a little bit behind. Then I got sick (again) with an awful head and chest cold. There was no way I could run if I couldn't breath. And then I was back to training, for a whole three days before something happened to my knee.

I don't know what happened. Wed. morning I went out for my run first thing, and my right knee was a little bit stiff, which I chalked up to it being early in the morning and my sleeping on it weird. It got kind of painful after a minute or two so I started walking to see if that helped. It did, and after a while I started running again, and the knee didn't hurt at all. I thought I was home free. But then in the last couple tenths of a mile before I got home there was searing pain through my knee. It was unfrickinbelievable how much it hurt.

I got home, popped two Motrin, busted out the ice pack, did the whole RICE thing. Holy mother of pearl I couldn't walk the rest of the day or all day Thursday. Thursday night we had my brother's Baccalaurette Mass and I looked like a fool hobbling around, and kneeling...yeah it just wasn't happening. Friday it felt a little bit better, but still there was no way I could run, I could barely walk.

I thought this morning I might be able to at least go out for a walk, but again no luck. I'm really started to get frustrated. I'm losing so much training time. I don't know how I'm going to ready for this marathon if I keep getting hurt and can't train. It's so frustrating, and I just don't know what to do about it.

I'm going swimming tomorrow in attempts to at least keep some of the cardiovascular endurance that I built. But it's not running and it's not the same. It's the most frustrating thing in the entire world. I just want to be able to run again. I really hate being laid up like this.

AHHHHH!

Tuesday, May 02, 2006

Hitting my stride

Yesterday's run felt good. It was my first time going at it since I'd been sick, but nothing felt out of whack. My stride felt right. The pace was good, and I felt strong through the finish. I was really happy about how well it went. I needed a good run.

Today was a rest day, and I was quite thankful for that. I got back to my room after class, and sat down on my bed to play the crossword puzzle. I ended up falling asleep on top of it, and I would have slept straight through my staff meeting at the gym if my friend hadn't called me asking if I wanted to grab dinner.

The semester's winding down, and I'm really looking forward to being done with class. The weather's so nice, all I want to do is be outside, whether it be running or just sitting on the mall (our version of a quad) and relaxing. The sunny weather totally kills all motivation to actually go to class, but someone I've been managing to drag myself.

I've got a 30 minute run scheduled for tomorrow. I'm hoping the expected rain will hold off until I can get my run in. Running in the rain means no iPod, and I'm not a fan of running without it.

As for the things falling into place, they might not be quite there yet, but they're getting there. Running makes everything better. Clears my mind. I can't really focus on much else when I'm self-talking to get up a hill. In reality, it was all pretty minor stuff that was upsetting me. In a few more days, with a few more runs, my mind will be totally clear again.

P.S. 18 days til my celebratory "YAY we survived finals" week at the beach!

Sunday, April 30, 2006

In a funk

It's been quite awhile since I've last posted, so I apologize for that. I had to take a week off from training because last Sunday I came down with a wicked case of strep throat. I probably could have been up and running again by Thursday, but I didn't want to push it, so I took the rest of the week off, and decided to pick back up with training starting today (which lucky for me was a rest day :o). So I guess re-training officially starts tomorrow.

I was so bummed out that I got sick and got thrown off my schedule. I was doing so good, and I had been making good progress and now I feel like I've been dealt a fairly sizeable setback. I mean I know it's nothing huge, and that I will be able to make up for lost time, but I don't know something just didn't feel right about not being able to run this week.

In general though, I've been feeling a little bit down and out. I'm not really sure what's going on, or what caused my mood to plummit this past week (maybe it was being sick) but I am in some sort of a funk and I'm not enjoying it one bit.

I'm hoping for a turn around this week when I can pick back up with my running again. Maybe being able to run again will make everything else that feels out of whack fall into place.

I can at least hope!

Friday, April 14, 2006

My first pair of real running shoes

Today was quite the exciting day. Time to retire the old running sneakers in exchange for a brand new pair. There's nothing quite like lacing up a new pair of sneakers and christening them on their first run. Tomorrow will be an exciting run!

I decided since I'm in marathon training, I obviously needed a good pair of running sneakers, and instead of just going to a sporting goods store and wandering among the shoes pretending I know exactly what I need, I went to a store specifically for runners. The guy who waited on me looked at my old sneakers to see how I pronate and to determine whether I have a high or low arch (mine is slightly higher than normal). Then he made me walk to the other side of the room and back so he could see my stride. Based on that little bit of information and my foot measurement, he went into the back room and brought back two pairs of sneakers - Aisics and Mizunu (not really sure on the spelling there). He let me lace up both pairs, go outside the store, and run up and down the street a couple times to see if I liked one or both pairs.

The decision itself was pretty easy. The pair I chose felt like an extension of my foot. It supported my arch perfectly, even though it isn't a "stability" shoe. Gray with some yellow. The Mizunu. Perfect. I literally cannot wait to hit the road tomorrow. (Unfortunately it was raining all day today and it was a cross-training day). Hopefully, the weather will clear up, and I will have some optimal running conditions for the first run in the new shoes!

What made today even better was that after I got my new shoes, I decided I should probably invest in some good running apparel. I have a few of the moisture-wicking tops, but not very many. So I hit the store, and lucky for me, there was a clearance on them! I got three new tops for $9.97 each! What a steal!

What a great day!

Three miles tomorrow!

Thursday, April 13, 2006

Week two report

I'm almost through week two of training, and for the most part it's been a pretty successful week. Tuesday it was absolutely beautiful outside, so I had my first outdoor run of the season. I didn't realize how tough running outside would be after spending a good long time inside on the treadmill. I didn't make it nearly as far as I thought I would, but it still felt so great to be running outside again that I almost didn't mind.

And truthfully, I think it was the hills that killed me. I mean, yes, occasionally I program the treadmill to give me some hills, but they are nothing even close to the real deal. So I was quite exhausted after Tuesday's run. But it felt so good to be outside again.

For today's run, which was a 20 minute quickie (I love when the training schedule has short runs!), I woke up before my classes to go running. That was weird. I'm not a morning person by nature, but I'm the type of person who can force myself to wake up and be active if I know I need to be. So instead of being dead when I hit the treadmill (it was rainy this morning), I felt really good, and I've actually felt quite energetic all day. So I may be giving some more consideration to the morning run. It gets it out of the way, and I feel much more alert during the day (although it's only a little after 11, I may hit my mid-afternoon slump hard later on).

I'm heading home for Easter this afternoon after my last class. So I will have three workouts to squeeze in at home. Tomorrow is a cross-training day, which will be no problem. We have a stationary bike at home. Saturday will be my endurance run, and since I just started training, they're still very short. So I have a quick three miles. I'm hoping it's nice so I can get it in outside, and then Monday I have a shorter speed run, which I'm going to do at home because I'll probably be getting back to school pretty late. The runs will have to be outside because I don't have a treadmill at home, so I'm hoping the shin splits don't kick in too bad. It'll be nice to get a change of scenery at home though.

Monday, April 10, 2006

It all starts here

On a whim last week, I registered for a marathon. That's right, me, who has only run 1 5K in her entire life, decided, "What the heck, why not run a marathon."

Ok, maybe it wasn't a complete whim. I've wanted to run a marathon for a really long time. (Or at least since I started snatching my mom's Runner's World Magazines before she could even read them, and got inspired).

The general idea of running a marathon probably planted itself in my brain about two or three years ago. I started training last summer to run the Disney World Marathon in Jan. 2006, but I seriously messed up my knee, and never really got back into training before I went back to school.

So that leaves me here. Nineteen years old, a sophomore in college, and training to run what has become my goal in life - 26.2 miles.

The night I so whimsically registered, I was sitting at my computer, browsing running websites, musing to myself that I really wanted to run a marathon and that I should train. Just musings, nothing serious. Until thinking outloud I told my roommate how much I really wanted to do this, and that the Baltimore Marathon was the perfect amount of time away.

Next thing I know, she's bouncing up and down saying how cool that would be and planning the sign she would make me for when I crossed the finish line (because I will cross the finish line, even if I end up crawling, which hopefully won't be the case).

I was still unsure and was definitely questioning whether I had it in me to actually do this. So I started checking Notre Dame's football schedule, looking for any excuse why this marathon wouldn't be the one. Because I watch every single Notre Dame football game, I figured a Saturday, in the prime of football season, wouldn't really work out.

But boy was I wrong. Notre Dame has a bye the day of the marathon. I took it as a sign, punched in my credit card number, and clicked register. And that is how I find myself where I am now - starting to run slowly and steadily, accumulating mileage.