Week 13 & 14

I've been late on posting updates, obvi. Catching up now!

8/8 Mon: 7Easy, tired miles in the neighborhood

8/9 Tues: 3x2 mi repeats - totally messed up the workout on my watch, played it by ear but had a really hard time maintaining an even pace without the beeping. 10ish miles total

8/10 Wed: REST

8/11 Thurs: 9 mi tempo, 11 miles total

8/12 Fri: 6.3 easy, treadmill

8/13 Sat: 6.2 mi easy, neighborhood

8/14 Sun: 16 mi, Lake Wash Blvd

8/15 Mon: 5.15 mi, pathway near my Mom's house

8/16 Tues: 2x3 mi repeats @ Seward Park 10 mi total

8/17: Wed: REST

8/18 Thu: 9 mile tempo, 11 mi total at the Lake. 

8/19 Fri: 5 miles easy, treadmill

8/20 Sat: 8 miles easy, neighborhood

In addition to running, it's been summer time to the max around here. Family visits, seeing all of my nieces and nephews, several cousins, in-laws, boating, SUPing very briefly but officially for the first time, reading, relaxing etc etc. It's felt very much like the summer I have been waiting for with the temperature finally hitting the very uncomfortable level and that feeling of not being home for more than 10 minutes without something to do coming up. So far, so good. 

Next week I move up to 10 mile tempos which is freaking my shit out, but all the strength workouts will be ones I have already done before. I'm looking forward to attempting the 3x2 mile repeats again this week with a correct workout setup on my Garmin. I have become incredibly dependent on the annoying vibrating bleeps that come from my wrist when I have to hit a certain pace. 

Oh, and the mystery foot pain turned out to be ill fitting shoes and I feel like an idiot about the whole thing so I don't really care to discuss it. Moral of the story = get fitted for shoes. 

How's marathon training going for all y'all? Any Hanson's people that can offer thoughts on what a tempo feels like in comparison to the actual race day feel? I'm getting nervous about making it the whole 26.2 at MP but don't really remember how my workouts felt on the Higdon plans before. 

Gotta go, sweating through my clothes in the home office. It's not pretty!

Week 12 Marathon Training + Socks!

7/31: 16 mile long run 1-90 Bridge!

8/1: 5 mile treadmill run

8/2: 4 x 1.5 mile repeats 1.25W UP+ 1.75 mi CD 11+ miles total

8/3: Wed Rest

8/4: 9 mi Tempo + 1mi WU 1 mi CD

8/5: Rest - kind of shitty, let's not talk about this just yet.

8/6: 8 miles easy neighborhood

8/7: 10 miles easy neighborhood

The theme of this week has been my feet. Ugh. The jury is still out with what exactly is up right now, but I'm trying to stay positive and also not dwell on it. I'll hopefully have more of an update in a few days. Fingers crossed that I'm just being paranoid and weird and overthinking something. Whatever it is has inspired some shakeups in my below the ankle wardrobe. Nothing like a little hitch in your giddyup to make you spend too much money at Road Runner

Round 1 of sock+shoe combo trials to improve overall feet happiness = Zella socks + Saucony Ride 9. 

(Similar socks here, shoes here.) 

(Similar socks here, shoes here.) 

This is my usual shoe with new socks I am fit testing for work. I loved these socks. I usually run in super thin, cotton Adidas or Nike socks I get from the Rack. I also always get blisters of some kind, usually in between my toes and lately some pretty gnarly ones underneath my toes on my right foot. (16 miles last weekend was not pretty). Changing to a more cushioned and non-cotton sock made a huge difference. I've always been a little cautious of thicker socks because I worry about my feet getting too hot or taking up precious real estate in my shoes. However these had these got rid of all my fears with my feet feel awesome and super cushioned the whole 8 miles. Still had some mystery foot stuff, but that is something different I think. 

Shoes here, socks here. 

Shoes here, socks here

This morning I tried out my new Brooks Glycerin 13 (on sale!) and also new Injinji socks. I got the Glycerins in an attempt to replace my Triumph 1's as another cushy option and picked up the Injinji's to combat the supreme blister problems I've been having lately. Again, success all around. NOT A SINGLE BLISTER. This hasn't happened like, ever. I didn't realize that it could happen. Definitely a convert to these socks and abandoning my thin cotton socks altogether. I have read so many positive reviews of these socks, I dont know what took me so long. The shoes felt good, fit well, and hopefully will be a good add to my rotation. I like having a cushioned and lighter option to swap between. 

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So overall another good week of miles with the exception of mystery foot problem. I'm loving the miles and am really love running in the morning as well. I get sad every day I see the sunrise getting later and later, but that just means starting a bit later and strapping on some sort of blinking light for those first few miles.

My legs feel good and I am really enjoying the Hanson's method so far. I'm starting week 13 tomorrow and I really cannot believe it. 13 weeks ago I didn't think I could run in the mornings, run 6 days a week, run a long run after a medium run the day before, run a speed workout, or run this many miles total per week. I'm trying to absorb each run and enjoy the process, and so far that part hasn't been too hard. I'm having more of a difficult time visualizing a successful race. Maybe it's the lack of 20 mile runs or now this crazy foot thing, but I just can't see it all coming together. I'm not sure if I need to be worried about this yet, I still have a few weeks until I start to get race nerves. Until then I'll just keep trucking along and watching the Olympics to keep me motivated. Oh and also reading other marathon training blogs, you ladies are ALL KILLING IT.  

When do you start getting pre-race jitters? 

What's your favorite running sock?

Favorite Summer Olympic event?

Week 11 + Running with Long Hair

7/22 Fri - 5.05 Treadmill 

7/23 Sat - 8.13 Neighborhood/Hills

7/24 Sun - 10 Lake Washington

Actually did something social after a Sunday run! 

Actually did something social after a Sunday run! 

7/25 Mon - 5.00 Treadmill

7/26 Tues - 6x1 mile repeats + Run Commute 10.3 total miles

7/27 Wed - REST

7/28 Thurs - 8 mile Tempo + W/up C/Dn Run Commute 10 total miles 

7/29 Fri - 5 miles easy neighborhood

7/30 Sat - 8 miles easy Lake Washington

This week has felt pretty good mentally and physically, good enough that now it's dipping into paranoia about what is going to go wrong between now and race day. I'm thinking a lot about fueling, even though I'm doing it wrong, and about my physical body. Turns out I can't eat kale salad 12 hours before a run without planning for a port-a-potty stop. You'd think that would be something I would know. I'm waffling back and forth between being proud of myself for making it this far into training and starting to believe it might work, and waiting for the other shoe to drop with an unexpected injury or some sort of other barrier to pop up. This morning I tried to focus a lot on enjoying the good feeling run I was having instead of over thinking everything. Sometimes on a good run I can trick myself into thinking that the race is going to feel just as amazing (rarely true) or that the good feelings are just a huge fluke (also rarely true). So today I tried instead of going from one extreme to the other, to sit in the happy zone and enjoy what was happening in those miles, knowing that it may or may not feel like this in a few weeks on mile 18 on slightly rocky terrain with hundreds of other people in god knows what kind of NW summer weather we'll be having. It could feel way worse, it could feel way better. Today felt like yes, I'm a runner and I am training and this is what it feels like for my body to run right now. That's all. Staying in the headspace of the current run instead of pinning all my emotions on what this could mean for any of my future runs was a relief. I ended feeling strong with a little left in the tank. I didn't want to blow my wad today since there are 16 miles looming for tomorrow. 

Another thing to note about this run was that my hair was in a pony and not braids, and when I finished I could actually run a comb through it. THIS IS A MIRACLE. I usually braid to prevent the wad of hair that a ponytail will usually turn into after a few miles of wind and sweat. This morning I tried to preserve the straight hair I've been sporting since Wednesday by adding some serum to it before heading out. Yes, it looked a little greeeezy when I left but by the time I got home I was really happy that it managed to keep itself from cannibalizing into a giant knot. Now I'm chilling in my compression sleeves and semi-okay looking hair and feeling pretty, pretty, pretty good in my filthy office. 

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Why is running so effing mental??? 

What's your favorite Larry David quote?

 

Miles Lately + Running Stores

Sunday 7/17: 15 mile long run

Monday 7/18: 7 miles easy neighborhood

Tuesday 7/19: Track Treadmill Tuesday 4x1200 repeats, 6.30 total miles

Wednesday: REST

Thursday: 7/21 Thursday 8 mile Tempo + w/up c/dwn 10 miles total RUN COMMUTE!

Feeling a little spazzy after my run commute. In new shoes!

Feeling a little spazzy after my run commute. In new shoes!

 

Notes on the Long Run: Ugh, Invisalign. I really need GU's for fueling so I can take it and wash it down at the water fountains, but due to some poor planning and lack of running supplies at a local Safeway I had to resort to the chews I had left hanging around. I chopped them up (not easy, very sticky) and wrapped them up in plastic wrap. At the usual 3 mile-ish mark I unpacked some lumps and threw 'em back. It sort of worked. I kind of choked a bit and then at the next water fountain held on to some of the lumpy chews in my mouth away from the Invisalign and tried to let the melt for a few miles. Overall it was kind of a disaster. My mouth and trays felt really gross. Later that day I went to Road Runner Sports and got a box of GU's + some Clif Shot Gels to keep it interesting. I'm looking forward to trying these out this weekend. The running part went pretty well. I didn't have the total shit first three miles I usually do and the nothing terrible happened. I saw lots of cute wildlife, other runners, great lake views, and really enjoyed the run. It was weird thinking that I ran almost the max I'm going to for the whole training. In a few weeks I'll run a few 16s and then boom boom boom marathon. Yikes. 

Notes on some shoes and the running shoe store: So y'all know how in love I am with my Saucony Triumphs. Like In LOVE. So it really bummed me out when I couldn't find them again at the running shoe store. I went ahead and tried the Triumph 2's. I bought them from Road Runner and ran a few runs in them while simultaneously developing a pain in my left arch. I kept rotating in my 1's with the 2's and when I'd use my old ones, the pain would go away. I went in on Sunday to return the 2's and walked out with the suggested replacements, the Saucony Ride 9's. The whole thing was really seamless and so far my Ride's are working out pretty well. I had them tied a bit too tight the first run and my toes went numb, but since I loosened them up they've been pretty nice. They aren't as cushy as the Triumph 1's and I am still tempted to hunt them down on Amazon in my size, but for now these will work and they feel fine.  Moral of the story is I love Road Runner Sports and the return policy for shoes and being able to try them out for miles to see if they really work. You just can't tell trying them on once or reading about them online if shoes are going to work for you. This takes that risk out of buying new shoes. I usually feel guilty doing this kind of thing, but it makes sense for a running store and I really appreciate it. 

Hope you guys are having a good running week. My under arm is chafed like crazy from my iphone holder on this morning's run. I hope this didn't happen to you. Happy trails!

 

 

 

Week 9 Training+ Some Thoughts

At least I think it's week 9?

7/9 - 6 mile easy around the neighborhood

7/10 - 10 mile long run at the lake

7/11 - 6.1 mile easy around the neighborhood

7/12 - treadmill (track?) tuesday: 5x1000m repeats, 400 rest between, 1 mile w/u, 1 mile c/d

7/13 - REST

7/14 - 8 mile tempo + 1 mile w/u, w mile c/d RUN COMMUTE OMG

7/15 - 5 mile easy treadmill + Ariana Grande sing along

7/16 - 5 mile easy neighborhood

Some observations from training this week:

Before a few of my runs on the weekends and the tempo on Thursday I've been trying to drink a bit of nuun. I was reading some random running thing (sorry for lack of citations!) that was talking about the importance of electrolytes and sodium in helping your body actually utilize the water you are drinking before a run. Too many runs have been run with water sloshing in my stomach and a lingering queasy feeling when I thought I was helping hydrate. Changing up from drinking 24-32 oz before a run to 8-16 of nuun has helped alleviate the queasy feeling and keep me hydrating, at least it feels a lot better when I do it. 

GUs + water are good at mile 3 of a long run. I'm out of GUs. I have a long run tomorrow. Time to go shopping. 

Easy runs are FUN. I'm trying to remind myself that easy runs are doing a lot of the work in this training plan. By that I mean they are doing the mitochondria building magic that the Hansons talk about, they are slowly fatiguing my legs so when I keep running on them I'm building up endurance. They are making my heart stronger. They are helping maintain and increase my fitness level. Plus, they are EASY so they are fun! I can control my facial expressions a little better so my neighbors don't think I am constantly having a stroke or holding in the biggest poo when I pass them on the run. I actually have enough spare energy and breath to say "hello" or "good morning" instead of grunting and lifting my fingers limply as I pass. I will let myself be stressed about 2 runs a week (tempo and track) and that's it. All the others should have a more relaxed and fun feel. It's making this plan seem less like 16 weeks of death and more like 16 weeks of becoming a better runner who likes running. Weird, right?

Shoes make a difference. I became a Road Runner sports VIP member so I get that fancy 100 day trial for my shoes and boy is it a good thing. I am taking a pair back tomorrow and hoping to get a pair that's better for me or order a repeat of what I have now (Saucony Triumph ISO). The arch of my left foot felt tight and cramped, so I switched back to my old shoes and tada! the pain went away. I hate when shoes change or my favorites get retired. Especially in the middle of training for a race. Fingers crossed I can find some to get me through the next half of this training plan without my feel falling off. 

The long run gets real tomorrow so wish me luck. Hopefully I can get my hands on some GU between now and then!

What's your favorite fuel?

What's your favorite shoe?

What do you think about treadmill speed workouts? Yay or nay?

 

 

Two Things To Talk About

1. The last two long runs I've done suck for the first 3 miles and then I eat a gel of some kind all at once washed down at the water fountain and everything gets better. Gels are a must now with the Invisalign and I have to have copius amounts of water to go with it and rinse out my mouth. Also it has to be mostly clear-ish so it doesn't stain. The trials and tribulations of a brace face runner.  Scraping the bottom of the barrel with this flavor. 

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2. I moved a track workout to the treadmill yesterday morning and I feel a little guilty about it. I think I need to push out my wake up time a bit since I think the main reason I avoided the track was due to a little fear of the dark. Next week is the last official speed workout and from then on it's officially "strength" workouts. Hmm. We'll see how that goes. Oh and ps it's week 9? Wtf.  

Happy hump day y'all!  

Superstition and Sock Sacrifice

July 3 Sun - 10 mile long run @ the lake

July 4 Mon - 6 easy miles @ the park

July 5 Tues - 6x800m w/ 400m recovery 6.7 miles total

July 6 Wed - rest

July 7 Thurs - 5 mile tempo w/ 1 mile w/up & c/down 

July 8 Fri - 5 easy treadmill

My long run on Sunday was pretty fun but also really terrible. I spent a lot of the first half worried about how slow I was going, all the tiny aches and pains I could feel, how I spend a lot of time thinking about how I can't do this whole Hanson's training plan etc etc. I was stressing about the fuel that I had packed. I was stressing that my whole nutrition plan was garbage (especially after listening to this podcast). I was stressing about how much time it was going to take me to run the future 10 mile tempos in a few weeks before work. It was all a lot of garbage. Then I found a fountain at mile 3, gulped my Honey Stinger (delicious! mostly clear! worked with the invisalign!) and restarted. The next 7 miles felt so much better. I tried to enjoy the views on one of my favorite running paths along Lake Washington and get over it. I did. It was fine. 

For my own reference - Orange Mango was delicious. 

For my own reference - Orange Mango was delicious. 

I was also wearing this shirt for the first time:

 

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After partially Marie Kondo'ing my running clothes (I could probably stand to do a few more rounds) I actually got rid of some old race shirts that I didn't really like or want to wear. But this guy, this one is my absolute favorite but strangely enough I had never worn it before Sunday. That's right. It's sat patiently waiting in my dresser drawer for 3 years until I could work up the nerve to wear it on an actual run. It's like I thought it was going to lose its power or magic if I wore it. I mean, I am worried about stinking it up, but really I think I was just being superstitious. Turns out it fits great and I love wearing it. So glad I did that I've worn it again already this week, after a wash of course. My goal is to keep this shirt from smelling as rank and foul as all my other running clothes. I would like to keep the shirt from my first marathon from smelling like butt. 

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I have also been slowly incorporating my new Saucony Triumph ISO 2's into the rotation. Right off the bat they feel a bit roomier than my 1's which I didn't think was possible. They are definitely cushy and wide enough where I need it, but the jury is still out, I'll update in a few more miles. I'm noticing some strain in the arch of my left foot lately and I'm worried it's due to lack of support and the extreme flatness of my feet. Apollo also ate one of my favorite Balega socks (pictured above before the incident) so if anyone has a single they'd like to donate to my now lone favorite neon green sock it would be greatly appreciated. 

Are you sentimental or superstitious about running gear? Any weird rituals?

What's the best sock you've run in? 

Week 7-ish and Eastern Washington Trail Run

Miles since last update:

6/23 7 miles - 5 tempo, 2 w/up/c/d

6/24 4.15 treadmill

6/25 8.06 miles neighborhood easy run

6/26 8 miles in Vancouver! Mom visit

6/27 4 miles in neighborhood. watch died at mile 3.3, I worried I would die

6/28 7.5 miles - Track Tuesday! 8x600 meter repeats. DEATH. Mega digestion issues, pretty tired, used weird porta potty at 5am. 

6/29 Rest

6/30 7 miles - 5 tempo, 2 w/up/c/d

7/1 4 treadmill miles

7/2 6.42 Trail Run - Photos below!

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The beginning, when everything was good and lovely. Before I saw all the bear poop and cougar tracks. 

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I ran my fastest miles EVER down hill. The first 2 miles were uphill and felt like I was going to murder my spouse for recommending this run. The elevation was a bit more than I am used to plus the incline was a bit intense.  Then I started the downhill and realized I was the only human for miles and started to enjoy it. AMAZING. 

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The foliage, so lovely! When I wasn't running from imaginary wild cats I was taking in some breathtaking views. 

Earlier in the week though it was a different story. These AM runs are resulting in some interesting outfit choices, including wearing shirts backwards. Like. A. Boss.

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Back V Neck, anyone?

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The miles are starting to pile on, tomorrow I have 10 on deck which is my longest so far. Maybe I'll start some fuel experimenting? Does anyone have any recommendations for clear gus? I can't really tell what color they are until they are spilling all over my hands attracting various bugs. I have also been noticing that any extra activities are starting to fall by the wayside and my runs are taking more time. I need to pay a little more attention to what I'm eating nights before track and tempo runs, it seems to have a very direct and uh, urgent effect on my running. I also need to get a massage like you wouldn't believe. My shoulders are super tight from aerial and then work (computers amirite??), my quads are grumpy some mornings more than I would like, and the arch of my left foot is really mad about some lack of support. Saving my pennies this month for a little time with my favorite masseuse and making sure to get my stretching in after ALL runs. 

Okay, time for netflix, dessert, and sleep. NEED SO MUCH SLEEP. 

 

 

 

PS You Can Do This

 I ran my first real legit tempo of the training plan this morning. You guys. It was so hard. Let's talk about it. 

I woke up to very overcast skies and worried a tiny bit about the weather and the thought of running this on the treadmill crossed my mind. With a workout so pace specific though, I realized I couldn't because of the lack of trust in my 'mill and its speed read out. I could go by effort, but I wanted to really know what my MP felt like in real life, not just what I thought it would feel like on the machine. I started with 1 mile warm up and didn't know my route for sure until I crossed the intersection turning myself away from the track. I was thinking maybe I could handle 5 miles on the track because it would be flat but I got bored just thinking about it so I kept going in the neighborhood. Hills will happen and I need to practice. So I did. 

My first 1.5 miles were a tiny incline, enough to make me a little worried and huff and puff a bit. Then as it flattened out I tried to maintain my sanity and keep my pace even. I really didn't move out of the pace zone as much as I thought I would, it's mostly the warmup and c/down where my pace becomes an issue. I am all over the place. I turned around halfway and continued on back. I tried to maintain the 'comfortably hard' feeling I've read about for tempo runs although some of the tiny hills made it feel more hard than comfortable, but I made it. 

The nice thing about tempos and about running with a warmup is that the run doesn't ever get to boring. I'm working the whole time, and working hard keeps my mind busy. Workouts with a purpose seem to turn on a part of my brain that makes it feel like a project and reminds me this is part of meeting my goal, this right now, what I'm doing, is going to help me run the race in September better or worse. It's also nice to have a specific goal to remind myself of when I'm doubting if I want to even put my running shoes on. Even after all my fretting beforehand, I realized at about mile 2 that oh, PS I can do this. I caught myself with the phrase on repeat until it was cool down time so it became my official tempo mantra. BTW self, you can do this hard thing even though you doubt yourself sometimes and ate ice cream yesterday and then some cookies and maybe didn't sleep enough and are running without fueling and your shoes have 430 miles on them and you are really tired and your legs feel like lead and you are not that fast anyway. This training plan so far has taught me that my internal monologue is really important and I need to start feeding it strong and positive data if I'm going to keep this up. 

I made the mistake just now of looking a few weeks ahead on my schedule. So, see you guys later I'm going to go throw up in fear now. I mean, I can do hard things and I'm only thinking about my next run. Trust the training. 

Do you freakout during training?

Do you think the physical or mental aspect is harder when running and training?

Marathon Training Week 6 + My First Track Tuesday

Run update:

Tues 6/14: 5 Easy outside

Wed 6/15: Rest

Thurs 6/16: 4.2 Easy Treadmill

Friday 6/17: 5 Easy outside (BEAUTIFUL SUNRISE OMG)

Saturday 6/18: 4.1 Easy outside

Sunday 6/19: 6 Easy @ the park, first time using a "Workout" on my Garmin. 

Sunday Run View

Sunday Run View

Monday 6/20: 4.1 Easy Outside

Tuesday 6/21: 12X400 repeats, 1.25 mi W/Up & C/Dwn

I used the Workout feature on my Garmin for the first time this weekend and it was amazing and simultaneously super annoying. Turns out I have no idea how to stay on pace and require multiple buzzing and bleeping reminders from my wrist as I try to find it. I wanted to make sure I was actually hitting and staying within my predetermined easy pace on Sunday so I attempted a 1 mile warm-up at v. easy, and then bumped it up super slightly for 4.5 miles and then cooled down for the last half mile. I had no idea how it was going to work and was so embarrassed at the racket my watch was making trying to get me to settle within the 15 second window I had given myself, I kind of missed the first mile. I guess that's one way to speed up a workout! But after I settled in at easy pace of 9:30-9:45 for the majority of the run, it was really nice! It worked out pretty well considering the park is a relatively flat loop, so there weren't any dramatic shifts in effort. I will definitely be using this feature throughout marathon training to help keep me on target. Setting it up on Garmin Connect was super simple and I look forward to playing with all the features. 

Duck feathers and duck poop. Not pictured: really cute ducks at the park.

Duck feathers and duck poop. Not pictured: really cute ducks at the park.

This morning I woke up, rolled out of bed and started to put on my running clothes. I actually asked myself "Is today the day you quit?" and then meekly answered "no" and continued to get dressed. I had never done a speed or track workout before and was terrified that somehow I was going to mess it up or fail all of Marathon by screwing up this workout. I picture myself as a pretty casual and relaxed runner so adding this kind of workout just felt so serious. I was worried it was somehow going to prove I wasn't really a runner, just a lame poser. (Don't ask me how my brain works.) Turns out I didn't fail Marathon and everything worked out pretty well, except for the chafing. 

I ran 1.25 mile easy warm up which is not totally easy that early in the morning, but whatever it was a warmup. Then I attempted my first 400 on the way into the track and the following 11 on the oval. It's a micro oval at an elementary school, but it still works. I had a difficult time staying on pace with each of the 400s at first, starting too fast and then overcompensating, and then all of a sudden it was over because it's only 400 meters. I definitely felt fatigued by the time I got home, but also completely warmed up. It ended up being almost 8.5 total miles which I wasn't expecting (not good at track math yet). I also did them about 5 seconds too slow according to my goal pace, so I'll have to update that for next weeks speed session. At this point though I'm just really happy I did it and did all 12 AND made it to work relatively on time and not broken. The one thing to report is that there was some serious #chubrub at attempt number 8 so I will definitely be wearing capris next week. 

I think my official goal time is between 3:50 and 3:55 for the race. It's not too specific for a couple reasons. I'd like to end up sub-4 because that's a very clear goal and would be a PR. Anything more than that I'm not sure of though. It's been 2 years since I ran a marathon and my running record has been spotty since then with injuries and mental breaks dotting the timeline. I wanted to run a track workout first before totally committing to this time, and still want to leave it flexible. I have my first MP tempo on Thursday which will help me get a better idea of where I'm at and if my goals are really workable. I will base my workouts around this pace and see where I end up. It's a challenge alone just attempting Hanson's so I'm pretty stoked to have made it this far (6 weeks, lol). 

Now it's time for aerial and maybe sleeping in tomorrow since it's an official rest day. Funny thing is I don't mind that I just ran 6 days in a row, it was kind of awesome. I'm going to try and soak in this feeling because I have a suspicion it's fleeting. 

Did you run today?

What's your favorite track workout?

Motivation!

I wouldn't call my run this morning bad, but it was definitely not as great as they have been lately. Most of the struggle came from sleep loss hangover and attitude problems. I woke up groggy and unmotivated, so I resigned to the basement treadmill, even though it was a perfect and dry 49 degree morning outside. It's almost the longest day of the year too, so daylight was not an issue. I tried to enjoy the flat, truly easy run this morning but after my progress lately becoming a more outdoor AM runner, I felt a little defeated and disappointed in myself. We're not even into the rough part of marathon training yet and I'm already falling back into my easier habits! I think I'm most frustrated because I don't actually think my physical training suffered, but my mental game  failed me today. I have been getting better about talking myself into getting out the door so well recently, but not today.

I was reminded of Tuesday's aerial class as I realized my shoulders were still sore around mile 2 and it felt like I was carrying sandbags off my neck.  I can't discount the long Tuesday workouts as not contributing to some of the fatigue. They will always be a long day for me and I absolutely have to get enough sleep and eat really well to make sure I survive, and that I'm ready for what will become my Thursday tempo runs. 

I got miles in this morning and I'm proud of that. I need to keep working on my mental strength though if I'm going to make it through this training. 

What do you do to stay on top of your self-talk?  

What's your current power food for long days and workouts?  

A Great Weekend + Nerves

Since we last talked, here's a training update:

Sunday: 5 miles with BFFs. One with a baby jogger *killing it* and the other on a bike playing paparazzi and scout. Example of my best running face and my running claws below. Does this happen to anyone else? I swear my fists are relaxed, but it just looks like I'm trying to imitate a t-rex. 

Monday: Rest Day. THRILLING. 

Tuesday: 5 easy miles in the morning. My first thought after stepping off my porch and starting my watch this morning was how I wished I had someone to run with. Running with friends will do that to ya I guess. It just doesn't even feel like running when you're with friends. 

In addition to the almost daily runs, I've been re-reading Hanson's to get ready for the uptick in miles I knew was coming. I guess I just sort of forgot though how much of an increase it is. This is my last week with Mon and Wed rest days, and my last week of only easy runs. In 7 days I start my first speed session (ever) and Thursday will be my first real tempo. I've tried in the past, but after re-reading I was reminded that tempo runs for Hanson's are at Marathon Pace. I'm worried it's going to be more of a wake up call than I had originally intended when setting my goal paces. My legs are getting fatigued just looking at my calendar for next week and I'm getting nervous.

My mental game is going to need some work this week. This is just the beginning of the training plan and if it wasn't hard then it wouldn't get the results I'm shooting for anyway. Let's just hope I can get through all of the miles smart and without added injuries. 

This all reminds me that I need new shoes. I'm in love with my Saucony Triumphs and am tempted to move up to the 2's. Anyone tried them?

 

Same Run, Different Outcome + Animals!

Yesterday I ran 3 miles, the same 3 miles I had run the day before, but I noticed it felt very different than the previous run. I have been trying to ignore my watch for the first mile of every run lately since the number had been pretty dismal, but as it beeped in on Friday it was almost a full minute faster than Thursday. Crazy! Other than the run being on the same route, here are some things that were different. 

-Thursday I ran right out of bed before work. Friday I woke up and had about an hour before the run. 

-Thursday I didn't fuel at all, Friday I ate a bowl of oatmeal and digested before starting.

-Thursday no coffee, Friday 1.5 cups and about 20 oz water. 

Moral of the story - morning runs are hard. Especially if I just roll out of bed and try to run on dead asleep legs. Also, coffee is magic and carbs help too. I hope running on sleepy legs in the morning right out of bed is making me get faster and I just won't be able to tell until marathon morning. Good strategy. Right. 

Another cool thing that happened yesterday was my pace staying relatively steady even though the elevation was not. Usually these comparisons on my garmin are the inverse of each other - hill goes up, I slow down. For some reason though I was able to keep that more under control this time. I also switched my screen from pace/time/distance to heart rate after mile 2 and I really think that helped me keep it easy. 

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This mornings run was nothing to write about, 5 miles on an out and back from my house. A cool thing happened completely unrelated to my running though. I was watching an adorable bunny hop across the street as I neared my house and noticed something else waddling near a parked car. It was this guy!

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After speeding home and grabbing my phone, I trotted up to him and he just let me snap some photos and a video of him. It's a Chukar! I've never seen one up close, only drawn on packages for cherries, lol. He made some cute noises and then moseyed across the street after our photo shoot. Running you guys, really is exciting right?

Tomorrow I'll be running another 5 easy and hopefully with some BFFs, so maybe there will even be pictures. I can't promise anything though. Happy Weekend!

What are you running this weekend?

See anything awesome/interesting on the run?

 

Marathon Training Continues!

I think I'm on week 3 of Hansons Beginner plan. It's hard for me to track since it started on a Thursday, but I'll just go with week 3. Today was 5 miles and was my longest pre-work run. I have been extremely thankful that I moved my runs to the morning with the heat wave we've been having. There is no way I could get myself out the door after work in 85 degree weather just yet, I need to get my summer heat endurance under me first. It was a beautiful morning, tank top and shorts weather from the start even before the sun came up. I even started to see more people in my neighborhood out and about at the ungodly hour. It was really nice. Upcoming runs for the week are all easy paced - 3,3,5,5. I had to double check this morning with the schedule, but I'm still really enjoying these runs while simultaneously getting more freaked for the upcoming speed workouts. My legs do not speed in the morning, they stutter and shuffle. It's going to get weird.

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Last night I continued my cooking streak by making the Warm Corn Avocado Salad. It was really good with tortilla chips and super easy to put together. Sometimes I really like corn and last night (plus a little leftover breakfast) was one of those times. Word to the wise though, red onions are intense and will not be forgotten. It's kind of disgusting, but they tasted okay in the moment even though they are something I usually remove from all of my recipes. 

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 I think the most useful part of the website I've been getting most of my recipes from is the cost breakdown. It's encouraging to know that I'm actually saving money when I make meals that aren't pre-processed since sometimes at the grocery store it can feel like it's cheaper to go with the pre-made stuff. I'm still in the gathering data phase of creating a food budget and am trying to determine how much our household actually eats, especially with marathon training increasing weekly along with my appetite. Eventually I'll need to learn how to make some more energy dense foods for pre-run snacks that are easy on the guts. Any recommendations?

Happy Tuesday All! What does your running week look like?

Recipe Snapping and Running

You guys, I just did something that I really have never done before and loved it. I looked up a few recipes online, went to the store with a list, only bought the items on the list, came home, and made an amazing lunch. I know this sounds really basic and not exciting at all but I am not a cooking person. I bake occasionally but mostly I just mush together some ingredients, eggs are usually involved, and call it breakfast, lunch, or dinner. In an effort to save some money, be a little more healthy, create less waste, and all the other good things that go along with cooking at home instead of eating out, I was inspired by Gretchen and popped over to budgetbytes to flag a few recipes to attack this weekend. Today I attempted the Greek Chicken Pasta Salad. 

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I snapped the whole thing and it's still up if you want to check it out. (Girlsammmm on snapchat) It was actually surprisingly enjoyable and I'm really glad I tried it! I have a couple more recipes I bought ingredients for and want to put together for leftovers throughout the week. Since moving my runs from the afternoon to before work, I have more time in the evening to prep and cook dinner. To most people this may seem like a blessing but I really stress out when it comes to my cooking abilities. I don't feel like I can't, I just don't ever feel prepared to do it. Prepping a list for the grocery store seems so *duh* but I rarely do it, and it made such a difference today. I spent less than I usually do with the exception of a miscalculation in the bulk spices section. (Always weigh people, always weigh.) It totally changes my attitude about cooking from stressed to excited. I'm going to try to make this a regular thing, this cooking thing. #adulting

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Speaking of morning running, this last week of training has been going pretty well! I'm still in the beginning stages, so no strength or speed workouts, but all the easy miles have been really nice and pleasant so far. This week was:

Mon: Memorial Day, rest day.

Tues: 4.15 easy neighborhood (4 easy on schedule)

Wed: rest day - Global Running Day. Oops. 

Thurs: 3 treadmill + 1.05 neighborhood miles (4 easy on schedule) It was raining when I started but then let up after a few minutes so I jumped outside for the last mile to make sure and get a hill in for the day. 

Fri: 4 treadmill (4 easy on schedule) Rushed morning as a single dog mom, stayed close to home for my fur babies and to make sure I made it to work on time. 

Sat:4.04 neighborhood (4 easy on schedule) I tried to get out early to beat the heat today and just barely made it. If I would have had to run any farther I would have melted and it was only 8:30 by the time I finished. This was a good confirmation that I made the right decision switching my runs to the AM for this training cycle. I am a heat weenie. Also, I ate my oatmeal too close to take off and the first mile was questionable as was the last half mile. Note for tomorrow - cool it on the breakfast fiber. 

Sun: 5 easy on the schedule - TBD.

It's supposed to get to 90 tomorrow so I'm setting up the kiddie pool for the pups and planning on doing a whole lot of nothing. Maybe I can do some yardwork in the morning but no promises. 

What's your ideal running weather?

What's your favorite easy and cheap recipe?

Are you a good cook? 

 

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Happy Memorial Day!

I hope you get today off from work and I hope you do something lovely!

As promised, here's a little recap of my last few miles. 

Sat - 7 mild miles with BFF (3 Easy on schedule)

Sun - 4.1 easy treadmill miles (4 Easy on schedule)

Total Miles for the Week: 21.2

Saturday I was able to meet up with BFF and run on her trail for 7 miles. Let me just preface this by telling you a bit about my amazing friend. She is working her way up from running 3-4 days a week to 6 days a week and hitting workout PRs like a madwoman. She's killing it in the nutrition game, raising the best almost 11 month old baby girl I've ever met, and is the one who found the Iron Horse Half Marathon in August for us to run. I had 3 miles on the schedule, but didn't feel too bad adding a few more since it meant a longer hangout. It was sputtering rain for a bit of the run, but mostly felt nice in a refreshing but not soaked sort of way. If I were to have done 7 on my own I would have done a lot more complaining later. This whole run flew by and was wonderful.

After the Saturday run I decided to hop on the treadmill for my easy 4. Boyfriend was dressed and ready to accompany me on my run but then the sky opened and torrential rain took over our neighborhood. Next time though I am definitely making him come with me. It felt good and easy on the treadmill and was a good mood boost. Randomly my left ear has been ringing for a few days now and it was seriously bumming me out. Typing symptoms into google is a pretty terrible idea but I went deep anyway. That was a tough one to get out of, let me tell you. It's still roaring/ringing today, but I'm trying to ignore it because that always works best. Fingers crossed!

After the run we saw X-Men Apocalypse and came home to do some yard work. It miraculously cleared up after we got out of the movie so we tried to take advantage of it. Now we're off on an outdoor adventure to celebrate the holiday and get my legs moving in a non-running way since it's a day off!

Any great memorial day plans?

How was your weekend running?

 

 

 

More Easy Miles + Dresses

Looks like we made it you guys, happy Friday.  

Running update:  

thurs- 3.1 easy miles outside (3 easy on schedule)

fri- 3.6 easy miles treadmill (3 easy on schedule) 

In an effort to not fall apart or break my body in some strange way this training cycle, I even added some foam rolling, stretching, and/or core work after this runs. 

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The low mileage is strange. I know I've said that before and it's not like I was running very much pre-training, but there was a lot of mental build up to marathon training starting and it feels like maybe I didn't need to freak out that much. When the strength workouts and 800s start showing up on my calendar there will absolutely be some meltdowns, but I think I can chill until then. Enjoy the gradual build up! Embrace the mitochondrial changes! Sleep as much as I can!  

After posting about my capsule wardrobe failings earlier this week, I decided to remedy that with some dresses that were on sale at the rack and selling more stuff on Poshmark. (First sale complete, woot!) Brace yourself for some bathroom selfies.  

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The serious face is just the paranoia of a co-worker walking in to see me snapping these and dying of humiliation. It's weird because we all know everyone selfies, but I still can't stand to be seen doing it. I'm always super impressed when someone on the bus or train selfies next to me. In public. With people watching (or sleeping). Way to own it.  

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This weekend I have two more easy 3 mile runs on the schedule. It looks and sounds incredibly boring, so expect an unnecessarily verbose evaluation on here in a few days.  

 

What's on your schedule?

Do you love or loathe training plans?

How often do you selfie? 

Tiny Victories

I made it through Monday and that is great. Was yesterday rough for anybody else? I wanted to be done with work around 9, so you can imagine how the rest of the day felt. But now it's over and Tuesday is right on track. I started out this morning with a tiny miracle. I heard the first few milliseconds of Beibs What Do You Mean and launched out of bed. No hesitation. No boiling rage. This song is my 4:37 alarm for morning running and has been a pain point for the last 2-3 weeks. I think I've almost got my body fooled into thinking waking up with the birds to run before work isn't going against everything it stands for. In fact, I ran more than the minimum requirement from Le Hansons while I was out there. Batshit, right?! I keep reminding myself it's only going get harder and the runs longer, and not to get used to anything feeling good for a while, but I will take this victory and enjoy it today. 

 The last few weeks of running my mileage has been on the low end since the Hanson's plan is just starting. It makes me a little frustrated that it jumps from high teens to 40s pretty quickly. Since I'm trying this out to conquer my fear of high mileage, I'm a little worried about these big jumps. This morning I literally had 2 easy miles on the schedule. I bumped it to 3.5 to make it worth waking up that early and getting out. Plus I want to minimize any fitness lost over the last few weeks. I haven't run more than 5 miles in 3 weeks! I will try to enjoy this downtime and bank it for later. 

Something not running related is my capsule wardrobe. I was super jazzed going into may but really only bought a pair of too-expensive shoes and felt guilty buying anything else. However now my May-July capsule still isn't picked out and what I'm wearing sucks. I think this is the opposite of what was supposed to happen. I went thrifting this weekend and snagged a pair of 501s that I am obsessed with but are not work appropriate, so I'm going to have to give it another shot this weekend. I'm trying to stick within a lower budget this time around while simultaneously looking more professional at work. It's not easy.  

How often do you shop for work clothes?  

Do you love/hate/don't care about the beginning of training plans when the mileage feels off? Does this happen to anyone else? 

 

Weekend Running + Random Updates

Yesterday was a little discouraging to wake up to - raining and rain on schedule for the rest of the day. 

So Run #2 of marathon training was moved indoors. Today was different enough, thank goodness, and I managed to get outdoors. 

Sat: Easy 3.5 (3 on the schedule)

Sun: Easy 4.4 (4 on the schedule)

A crappy weather bonus is I worked on some indoor projects that needed to get done and didn't feel guilty. I updated some items in my new Poshmark shop and did a bunch of grocery shopping. Has anyone else tried Poshmark? A friend introduced me a week ago and I'm obsessed. It's a little more fun than taking my clothes to the consignment store and honestly a lot easier when I feel like being a total homebody. Maybe I'll put up a review when I have selling and buying experience to report on. I figured it could be a quick way to clean out some closet items. 

I also tried making Aquafaba to not-so-delicious results, but I am willing to try it again. Aquafaba is bean water, I borrowed mine from a can of garbanzo beans, and when whipped has the same consistency of frothy eggs. It's supposed to be a good vegan substitute if that's something you are looking for. I read about it and decided to experiment. Lesson #1 - use unsalted beans. If not, your recipe takes on a slight beany flavor. Lesson #2 - use parchment paper when baking meringues unless you want meringue shards instead of meringue cookies. I tried to make meringue cookies but I may move on to the buttercream frosting of a vegan lemon meringue pie next. Onward and upward!

borrowed from here. 

borrowed from here

Now it's off to a long dog walk, checking out a new bookstore that opened near us, and prepping for the rest of the week. Happy Sunday!

Invisalign and Long Runs

One of my biggest concerns signing up for Invisalign wasn't the 22 hours wear each day I'd have to get in, the constant brushing and flossing, or loss of snacks, but how I would get in fuel during a long run. (Technically that itself is all of the combined things listed above... I see that now.)

I'm supposed to wear these puppies 22 hours a day leaving about 40 minutes per meal with the trays out. But long runs as we know, last longer than just 40 minutes and sometimes go up to the total 2 hours. I googled what gels I could use, if I could carry the trays around with me while running, blah blah blah. My strategy when the time comes is to swig down a clearing colored gel (to prevent staining of course) and rinse with the water fountain as soon as I see it. So, dear readers, I need clear gel recommendations or handheld water bottles so I can switch to Nuun/fancy water fuel instead of gel.  

Also, if this is something you've been through, how do you deal with the snacking issue? I have become very, very accustomed to fighting the runger by eating about 5-6 times a day. 2 breakfast-ish type meals, lunch, 3pm snack, and dinner. Now I'm shoveling eggs in a tortilla for breakfast to keep me full until lunch where I shove another meal in my mouth quickly and then paranoidly brush and floss in the locker room at work. Dinner has been a crazy 30 minutes of eating everything I can find in the kitchen while the Invisalign are out because I am starving after missing my afternoon snack. Being a hungry person is hard. Any advice? Any superfoods that keep you full ( I know, protein) longer between meals that don't get super stuck in your teeth? 

Continuing with the trend of dental issues, yesterday my dentist spent 20 minutes filing the sides of my teeth to make room for the shifting teeth and I'm really hoping that was the worst of this whole process. It was pretty awful. The noise I could deal with, but having the dentist hummed as she pulled really hard with wire razory tools between my front teeth wasn not cool. My body was having a hard time relaxing since I have worked my whole life to keep my teeth in my mouth. Anyone that's been through this before - did you have to get the metal dental floss? How did you deal?

I plan on documenting what I learn works best for me since I couldn't really find good info specific to runners in my searches. Most just devolved into messages boards arguing about how long you should run before needing fuel, it was super annoying. Hopefully it can help other runners going through this too. 

Had any weird dental/medical issues lately? This sounds like a very dangerous question to ask on a blog..... oh well!