Tuesday, December 8, 2009


Week 13 was a glowing success. I followed the schedule exactly!!! Breakdown is as follows:

Tuesday: 4 miles
Wednesday: 6 miles
Thursday: 4 miles
Saturday: 4 miles
Sunday: 14 miles

Total: 32 MILES!!

I won't lie, 14 miles was probably one of the toughest long runs I've had in a while (my first long run of 6 miles was probably the toughest because of the heat and my foot hurting), so this probably ranks as 2nd hardest. Last week's 12-miler seemed pretty easy (relatively speaking). On the 14-miler my legs were really hurting for the last 3 miles . I'm guessing it is because of my high mileage the rest of the week. But, it was a success so I'm happy and feel like I am getting back on schedule. I don't have a time however because my garmin's battery ran out in the first mile. I think I ran it in about 2.5 hours which is decent. I ran two 7 mile laps which mentally is not my favorite thing to do, but I did it and that is all that matters...right??

This week I'm going to slightly pull back to give myself time to recover which is probably a great idea considering the pathetic fitness center they have at the Sheraton I'm staying at. Today I attempted to run 4miles on the treadmill at said fitness center, but the treadmill obviously hadn't been recalibrated in at least 10 years. To get to a comfortable jog, I had to put the mph at 9.0. I normally run between 5.5 and 6.0. I decided I couldn't base my run on distance because it was clearly off so I decided to run for 45 minutes to get as close to 4 miles as possible. The treadmill said I ran 7 miles in 45 minutes which for me is pretty much impossible. Oh well, at least I got a little exercise in.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Confession Time

I finished week 16 with 23 miles. I had to cut my long run short on Sunday to 8 miles because of Grandma's shrimp stew. Totally worth it!!

Week 15 didn't go so well. I only managed to run two days that week. I was in Tucson for work and unfortunately the hotel did not have a fitness center. I have no excuses for Thursday and Friday of that week though because I was home and didn't get off my lazy butt. I ran 3 on Saturday and 10 on Sunday for a pitiful total of 13 miles.

Week 14 went a little better. I ran 4 miles on Tuesday, 5.5 on Wednesday, and 4 on Thursday. I wasn't able to run on the weekend because of various life events, but made up for it on Monday with a long run of 12 miles for a total of 25.5 miles.

This week I have 28 miles planned and hope to stick with my training schedule for here on out. Only 3 months to go and it is do or die time. When I have more time to blog, I may update everyone on my run-ins with nature including 2 deer sightings which almost gave me heart attacks. I'm kind of a scaredy-cat if you didn't already know that. Also, I want to post pics before my long run next week so everyone can see just how ridiculous I look with my ten million add ons hanging off of me.

Friday, November 13, 2009

Week 16--Midweek Post

So much to catch you guys up on....

I ended Week 17 with a total of 26 miles. I ran 11 on Sunday to round out the week. Then, I took the first three days of this week off. I was just burnt out and was super busy. We have new carpet and tile in the house and are working on the finishing touches like sealing the grout and getting the shoe molding installed and painted. I also hired a housekeeper to take some of the burden off me. Hopefully once this is all done, I will be refreshed and have a renewed interest in training. Well, I'm trying to get back on track so last night I ran 6 miles on the treadmill in just under an hour. It was nice to run again although I was upset with myself for not following the training plan. I plan to run 6 on Saturday and 12 on Sunday to end the week with a respectable 24 miles. Let's see if that happens considering tonight we are having a fun night out at a fancy restaurant for my sis's birthday.

In other birthday/training news, my lovely husband got me a Garmin 305 for my birthday. I haven't taken it out of the box yet, but I'm excited to use it on my runs this weekend! It will be fun to keep track of my pace/mileage/heart rate!! YAYAY!

Also, the finisher's medal has been revealed. Here it is!

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Week....I Forget...Update

Okay, so I'm tiring of this whole training business. Maybe it is because life is busy or because I'm having blood sugar issues or because the marathon seems too far away, but my motivation is lacking. In spite of this, I still managed to fulfill most of the mileage last week. I ran 5 on Tuesday, 7 on Wednesday, 3 on Thursday, and 11 on Sunday. Nothing too exciting occurred. I did have a run in with nature on Wednesday as a snake slithered by and shortly after a cardinal almost flew into me. That got my heart racing for sure, but other than that, it has been uneventful. I have a couple longer runs planned for today and tomorrow, but I have a feeling I may cheat and shorten them a bit and just run a little longer this weekend. I'm finding that I really enjoy my one longer run of the week, but the running in the 4-8 range during the week is really getting me down. Partly because if I want to do it outside I have to wake up super early and that just hasnt been happening and if I don't wake up, I have to do it on the treadmill at night which sucks. I need to just get my butt out of bed but I just can't seem to talk myself into it at 5:45am. Also, next week is a pull back week, but maybe I will trade and run more next week.

And, at the wise suggestion of a commenter I have altered my goals. I have 3 goals.

Attainable: Finish marathon in under 5 hours
Moderate: Finish marathon in under 4:30 hours
Pie in the sky: Finish marathon in under 4:15

So there you have it in writing. Less than 4 months to go!!!

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Training Recap

Back from beautiful Marshall, TX. Training last week was not the best. I managed 5 miles on Tuesday and 7 miles on Wednesday, but then took off Thursday, Friday, and Saturday. Sunday I tried to make up for my slow week and ran 10 miles. It was a good run with beautiful weather and candy lined streets.

This week I am attempting not to skip any of my short runs. Like last week, I've run 5 miles on Tuesday and 7 miles on Wednesday. I'm planning a 4-5 mile run tonight.

I'm getting slightly fatigued with this whole training thing. I've scheduled a doctor's appointment for tomorrow to make sure there is nothing wrong besides just being tired from training. I'm having some moments where I feel very weak and just overall icky. This doesn't happen during my runs and sometimes happens on my rest days. So, it could be stress, allergies, the weather change, over training, or something that is not good. Hopefully I'll get some answers tomorrow but I'm not completely confident that this is something that is easily diagnosed, but we shall see.

Monday, October 26, 2009

Signed up for the Marathon!

I signed up today and paid my money. No turning back. I'm going to rock this thing.

Also, I'm changing up my training schedule. We are now 18 weeks out so today will be Day One of Week 18. I'm also changing the weeks to start on Monday and end on Sunday that way my weekly mileage totals will not get messed up when I switch my long runs from Saturday to Sunday. Most training plans are 18 weeks long so today is the official beginning of training!!!

Double Digits Baby!

Yesterday, Sunday, I completed my first 10-miler. AND I did it in 1:45. No, not one minute and 45 seconds. One hour and 45 minutes. If my calculations are correct, which they very well may be wrong, I averaged 10:30 miles. THAT IS AMAZING. I'm starting to get the confidence to actually believe that instead of just finishing....I'm going to kick this marathon's a$$! Okay, so maybe that is an overstatement but with 4 months left to train I'm feeling really good about changing my goal time to 4:30. Okay....so maybe it is wrong to get ahead of myself and all the books say to just finish your first one and not worry about times, but 4:30 isn't a particularly fast time and I keep underestimating myself, so maybe just maybe I can run faster and longer than I think I can.

So, that is the latest news. I did a bad job of recapping last week because I was super busy and just a little disappointed in myself for not following my schedule last week. But, here is the update:

Sunday: 9 miles in 1:42 (sore from 5k so went super slow, but it was a good, fun run...i love running slow!!)
Monday: off
Tuesday: 4 miles on treadmill in 41 minutes
Wednesday: tired, stressed, busy + full of excuses
Thursday: same
Friday: same
Saturday: 4 miles on treadmill in 42 minutes

Big announcement later today...stay tuned. :)

Saturday, October 17, 2009

1st 5k Report

So, I haven't been the best about updating the blog recently but time seems to be an issue with me these days. I ran on Monday (4 miles), Tuesday (5 miles) and Wednesday (4 miles) of this week. For Wednesday's run I woke up at 5 am to complete it before the research project in LA began. I'm super proud of myself for that....but then, on Thursday I was so done with everything. I was tired, work was stressful and long, and I just didn't find the time to get any running in. Friday was all day on a plane (almost literally) as my flight was delayed because of a faulty ceiling panel on the plane, so again no running. Ultimately, the week started out good but was ending poorly until....my very first race!!!!!

So, I haven't run a 5k since high school and was very skeptical of my ability to run fast. I mean, I know I can run at least 8 miles, but most of my training runs I only average between 10-11:30 minute miles. So, I was content to run this 5k and finish in the 30 minute range.

I barely woke up in time this morning. I was still tired from my day of travel and was a bit off because of the time change, but I forced myself out of bed. I didn't really eat healthy yesterday so as I was getting ready I warned Ryan that I might come in last place and finish in over 30 minutes. Ryan seemed annoyed and a bit disappointed in my lack of ability, but we wound up getting out the door by 8:15...only 15 minutes late. I arrived and got my number and then we waited....and waited...and waited. This was actually probably a good thing for me because it allowed me time to wake up. It also gave my competitive spirit some time to wake up as well. Ryan kept picking out people as goal people to beat and while I was skeptical, I really wanted to do well and not come in last place.

So the race began. This was a small race and it really started abruptly. I wound up by accident being the the front (on the far left side) while everyone was bunched up on the far right side. So, I just started running as fast as I thought I reasonably could maintain. I really had no clue how fast I should be going. There was a small pack in front of me and as I ran, no one was passing me. I just kept waiting and waiting for the crowds that were back at the start line to come up and pass, but they just weren't. It was really weird....but I kept running and trying to keep pace with this really old man that seemed to know what he was doing. There were no mile markers, but I must say I ran the whole first mile with no one passing me which was really odd. At some point, a guy that looked in his 40s passed me and I was running next to this little kid that kept sprinting then slowing down then sprinting then walking which got kind of annoying because I kept having to worry about where he was because we kept going back and forth passing each other. Anyways, we got to the first turn around, and much to my surprise, there was hardly anyone close behind me. As I kept running, I realized that I probably would beat most of the people Ryan told me I need to beat because it didn't look like anyone was running particularly fast, and a lot of people were walking by this point.

The race then recrossed the start line and went out and back for the final mile. This was really funny because at this point very few people had gotten to that point, so Ryan, assuming that I was going to be at the back of the pack, wasn't even watching. I turned the corner and happened to turn my head and I made eye contact with Ryan. He looked surprised and all he could muster was a thumbs up. He was really shocked to see me in the front of the crowd. I think he was really proud of me and I could see it on his face....along with the utter surprise.

At this point, I knew it was almost done and I started running as fast as I could. I usually like a really slow pace so I made sure to push myself to go faster than normal. I felt good and 3 miles is starting to feel pretty short to me which is a great feeling. One chick passed me but then lost steam pretty quickly, so I re-passed her. I wound up finishing in 24:20. I was the fifth overall female to finish and finished first in the 25-29 age group. I even got a medal!!! I wound up finishing at the same time as two 70+ old men which was kind of funny, but I did wind up beating A LOT of men which was fun. I probably finished in the top 20 overall. I think not many people took the race very seriously, but the big accomplishment is the confidence boost knowing I can run faster than I thought I could. Maybe this is a lesson that I need to start thinking more positively....

Monday, October 12, 2009

Week 4--Recap

So, I've been MIA, but that doesn't mean I have given up. Just had a busy weekend. On Thursday of last week, I completed the trifecta of not waking up for my morning run, but again, I made up for it in the afternoon. I ran 4 miles on the treadmill in a little under 40 minutes. I'm working to run faster on my short runs in order to improve my speed and get ready for my 5k that is next Saturday.

Then on Saturday, I set out to kick 8 miles's butt again. And.....I did. I completely rocked it and am so proud of myself. I stayed at my parent's house and so I ran in the back of their neighborhood. It was a great route and I really felt great the entire time. My knees hurt a little, but nothing that was too bad. I felt like I was going really slow and wound up finishing in 1:32, which is slow but good...and then I realized that I went too far in one direction so I actually ran over 8.5 miles when I relooked at my route map. But the great thing is, even if I had taken 1:32 to run the 8 miles, it still would have been a great run. I just felt really good, had a positive mental attitude, and actually felt like I had more in the tank when I was done.

So now Week 5 begins. I did a little too much imbibing on Saturday night at the LSU party, so I skipped my Sunday run. I plan to make it up this afternoon. Obviously it will be inside because it is a monsoon right now. And then I'm off to LA for the week, so now begins the ultimate question, can I keep up with my marathon training schedule while busy on the road???? The answer to that question and much more on the next installment of "iheartryan's running blog."

Hahaha, so much suspense.....

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Week 4 -- Wednesday

Wake up FAIL. Again, I hit snooze too many times and did not make it out for a morning run. So, after work I went. Ran 5 miles in 53:23. I'm trying to run a little faster in preparation of my first 5k next week. I managed to meet my goal of running faster than 11 minute miles, but I would like to run the 5k in less than 30 minutes which obviously does not seem possible at this point. Oh well. If I could manage a 10 minute mile pace that would make me happy. It seems so easy on the treadmill, but when I get out on the open road, I guess I go much slower. Oh well. We will see how I do next Saturday.

Week 4 -- Tuesday

I hit my first major milestone on Tuesday.....I ate my first bug. Yep, I'm very proud of my accomplishment. It was just one of those days. I set my alarm for 6:45am and much to Ryan's chagrin, I hit the snooze about 4 times before it was finally time for Ryan to get up for work and he turned the alarm off altogether. So, no morning run for me. I left work about 4:45 and headed to the Y. Got there, and of course there were no treadmills open. UGH. So, I headed home to get ready for an outdoor run. Got all my stuff, except my watch, and headed out. Didn't make it to my route until 5:30, so there it began. My first race of the season.....a race against the sunset. So, I started out on my run and soon realized I had forgotton my watch. Oh well. Keep running. About half a mile into it, I ran into a swarm of flies. Ate a few, a few got in my eyes, and rest were stuck to my sweaty face. I was like a human spider web. Not my best moment. Oh well.

I made it to milemarker one and instinctively looked down at my left wrist. Yep, my watch still wasn't there. It unfortunately had not magically appeared. In my mind I was thinking, this could have been my fastest mile 1 ever and I would have no way of knowing, but deep down I knew it was much more likely that it had been my slowest mile 1 ever so I was sort of glad I didn't have a watch to make myself feel bad about it.

So, from there it was on to mile 2. I HATE mile 2. It is always my worst mile. I always feel like quitting. It is so funny how mile 8 can feel better than mile 2. But anyway, I soldiered on and conquered mile 2. And you know the best thing about finishing mile 2, is I get to mile 3, which is my favorite. Mile 3 always seems to fly by. At that point, I'm always sufficiently covered in sweat and for some reason that feels a lot better than the beginning miles where I am half wet half dry and I can feel the sweat tricking down. Once I get to mile 3, I stop feeling it and just accept the grossness and kind of hit my groove. Anyways, the last 2 miles were uneventful. I even got a bit of a kick in the end which is always fun. So, I accomplished 4 miles in about 43 minutes (give or take). Not bad, not good, but I finished them and tomorrow is another day. :)

Oh, and in other news, I signed up for my first race today. I'm going to be competing in a 5k on October 17th. 3.1 miles sounds really easy, but I want to get a good time so I'm going to attempt some tempo runs next week to improve my speed. Can't wait and I will post pictures after the race!!

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Week 4 -- Sunday

Long time no see. Work/life got in the way of training last week. I'm really glad I got my 8 miles in on Wednesday. So, I didn't run on Friday or Saturday. But, overall it was a good weekend for other reasons.

So, here we are at the start of week 4. I decided to get out there this morning and run 6 miles to make up for my failure to run 4 miles yesterday, but the weather wasn't really cooperating. I wound up making it 5+ miles in about 1 hr, but then the waves on the lake prevented me from going any further down the path. As I turned to finish, the wind just about knocked me over. I was exerting a lot of energy but not getting very far, so I called it a day after making it to my car. I don't know the exact mileage.....wish I had one of those nifty garmin watches that tracks that sort of thing....

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Week 3 -- Thursday

4 miles on the treadmill. 41 minutes 40 seconds. Felt good but a little long. Knee is now stiff. Oh well. See you in Madison....

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Week 3 -- Wednesday

I did it! 8 miles and it felt great. Love the fall weather. I didn't go particularly fast, but my only goal was finishing. I did it in 1 hour and 30 minutes. It was a good course and a beautiful day. I still need to work on waking up earlier. I didn't get out of bed until 7:30. Ate breakfast, hydrated, and got ready. Didn't make it to the route until 8:30 and then did 10 minute of warm-up. That meant that I didn't get home and showered till almost 11am. Yikes. Good thing I took the day off of work!!! So, today was a great day (and I ordered tile and carpet for the house to boot!!!!), but now I'm exhausted and just ready for Ryan to get home so we can chill.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Week 3 -- Tuesday

Not much to report today. I hadn't planned on doing any running because I was supposed to be at a research project in Philly all day and then catching a late flight to Texas. As it turns out, both projects got canceled or postponed, so here I am with nothing to do. Anyways, I decided to go to the gym and take it easy today. I ran 2 miles in 20 minutes and then lifted some free weights. I wasn't feeling particularly great, so I cut it kind of short on the weights. (Just to give you a clue about my mindset, I went to Smoothie King after the gym. I decided to get two smoothies using a coupon I had. I decided I wanted a Berry Punch and a MangoFest. I order the Berry Punch and then asked for a Blackberry Dream. I have no idea where that came from. I've never had one of those and didn't even know they existed. I guess it is on the menu next to MangoFest and I somehow read it out loud. I didn't even catch it in time to change my answer. So I sit here drinking my blackberry dream and realizing this whole training thing is way more tiring and mentally exhausting than I ever imagined.)

So, today was uneventful but tomorrow is pretty important. It will be my first attempt at 8 miles. I've decided to move up my long run to Wednesday since I will be in Madison all weekend. I still plan to head out on a trail in the WI, but I think it is a better idea to shoot for 6 miles in a strange town instead of 8. Wish me luck!

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Catch Up Post

So, let's start from the beginning.

Why did I decide to run a marathon?

It has been something that I have wanted to do since I started soccer sophomore year of high school. For conditioning we had to run 4 miles every Thursday in October. A lot of people doubted my ability to run this far and actually told me this to my face. To their surprise, I was actually somewhat of a decent long distance runner and wound up doing pretty well with it. I found I enjoyed long distance running and would look forward to this time of year. I secretly decided then that it would be a life goal of mine to complete a full marathon.

Why now?

Well, why not now? I let this goal of mine slip away for several years. Heck, its been 10 years since I've been in high school. Anyways, recently I decided to shed a few pounds that I had gained since getting married. While at the gym one day, I did a 20 minute warm-up jog on the treadmill before doing some free weights. A big gym-guy came up to me as I was lifting and complimented me on my running style. He told me I had a good run and asked how many miles I did. I sheepishly replied only 2 (it was actually less than 2 to be honest). He said, "Wow, I'm surprised. You have such good form I was for sure you had run at least 10 miles." I don't know why, but this conversation really reminded me how much I used to love running and I felt a little ashamed that I was no where near in shape enough to run anywhere close to 10 miles. So, that conversation motivated me and I really got to thinking about it.

I also got to thinking about the fact that I don't have a hobby. At a pre-focus group dinner one night several months ago, the client called me out and asked what my hobbies were. ((Big gulp)) Ummm.... (I reached for my water, took a big sip, and prayed that I could come up with a hobby in the time it took me to swallow my water......nothing came to mind). At this point, everyone is quiet and staring at me. I replied, "All I do is work." My boss says, "That's right." The client says, "No, I'm serious, what do you do in your free time." I quietly mumble something about hanging out with my family and my boss chimes in that I always seem to be going to weddings. Boy, that was awkward. Eventually, the subject changes to Doug's hobbies. He has a million so we were good to go. But seriously, I can't believe I don't have a single hobby that I can identify. I need a hobby and running will be my hobby/obsession.

Why did I start this blog?

So, I'm going to use this blog to keep track of my training. I want to keep myself accountable so I will post the good, the bad, and the ugly. I will include distances and times even if they are not the best. My number one goal in all of this is simply to finish the race. I secretly hope to do it in under 5 hours, but I'm not there yet and just need to do my best. Five hours is not that ambitious of a goal, but I will revisit this issue closer to the race.

Recap of training so far:

Week 1
Tuesday- Distance: 2 miles Time: 20 minutes Comments: treadmill, easy
Thursday-Distance: 4 miles Time: 40 minutes Comments: treadmill, easy
Friday- Rest day. Got fitted/Bought running shoes at local running store.
Saturday- Distance: 6 miles Time: 66 minutes Comments: This was my first long run. I woke up early which is a big deal for me. It was hot and humid, but not horrible. I got a little mixed up on my route so it wasn't quite the full 6 miles but pretty close. I also got a horrible pain in my right foot around mile 5 which was brutal. The new shoes were not doing it for me....more on that later.

Week 2
Sunday- Distance:
4 miles Time: 44 minutes Comments: Good run. I woke up early again. I was sore from the day before so I kept a light pace. I went back to my old shoes which helped alleviate the foot pain. It was hot again but I had a good attitude and was proud of my run.
Monday/Tuesday- I rested my legs both days as they were pretty sore from the weekend. On Monday, I returned to the running store to talk to the owner about my foot issue from Saturday. The people at the store were super sweet and let me exchange the shoes for a different pair. I decided to go with a different style and brand and these are working out much much better. I also did some cross training on Monday to get my upper body into the game.
Wednesday- Distance: 4 miles Time: 38 minutes Comments: Before work I headed to the YMCA and ran on the treadmill. I had a great run and finished with a great time (for me). Had a minor snafu with the treadmill and accidentally paused it for a minute, but overall it was a great run.
Thursday- Distance: 5 miles Time: 54 minutes 30 seconds Comments: By far my biggest success of training so far. I was out of town for work. I had to wake up at 5:45am to get the run in before having to get ready and attend a focus group at 8 am. I did it on the hotel gym treadmill. I had a great attitude and great run in spite of the wine and dessert I had eaten the night before at dinner with the clients.
Saturday- Distance: 6 miles Time: 65 minutes 50 seconds Comments: By far my worst run. It was hot, humid, muggy, and drizzly. I felt like I was running through a sauna. Set the alarm for 6:30 but didn't roll out of bed until 7:20. No time for breakfast before the run so I drank my water and left on an empty stomach. Didn't get to my route until 8am. By that point it was rainy and very hot. I wore my new fanny pack/hydration belt for the first time. It was not the best. Too heavy and it was pulling my shorts down. I wound up having to carry the bottle in my hand the whole run. I also got confused about the route and had half a minute where I was literally running in a circle in a parking lot with a bunch of old fishermen staring at me like I had two heads. Eventually, I found my way and managed to have a good miles 5 and 6. The bad thing about this run is I really let the mental side of training get to me. I had a bad attitude and had to literally talk to myself out loud to stay motivated. All in all, it wasn't that bad because I finished and had a decent time especially given the weather and the fact that I got lost and ran at least .15 miles off track.

Week 3
Sunday (Today)- Distance:
4 miles Time: 40 minutes 40 seconds Comments: A lot better than yesterday. I got my motivation back. It was hot as can be as I didn't go out until 2pm, but I had a good run and a good time considering the heat and humidity and the fact that my legs are tired from yesterday.

That is it for now, assuming you made it through this ridiculously long post. Tomorrow is a rest day so I will post again on Tuesday.

Very First Post

Hi anybody who decides to read this! This is my first blog. I've decided to run a marathon Feb. 28, 2010 and have created this blog to track my training progress. Yesterday was the end of Week 2 of training. Week 3 starts today with a 4 mile recovery run from my long (hahaha) 6 mile run yesterday. Yesterday's run was not the best. I'm beginning to understand why everyone says that running a marathon is more mental than anything else. I had a bad attitude and all I could think is if 6 miles is this uncomfortable, think of how bad 26+ miles is going to be. But, I did it and its done, and today I promise to have a better attitude. Stay tuned to see how it all goes.....