Wednesday, November 29, 2006

The Final Countdown

I am SO done with riding outside until spring/summer. I met Tracy at the Rec Center at noon yesterday. It was 65 degrees. It was cloudy and had rained a little. It really looked like a good day to ride. We were ok for the first 10 miles or so but when we turned onto Fredonia Road, the head wind was unbelievable. We ended up riding 20 miles and once again I couldn’t get off the bike fast enough!!
My trainer came today, now I just have to convince Ronnie that it should be my anniversary present. The good thing is that his new golf cart cover came today also and I know he won’t want to wait until Christmas for it. I am thinking anniversary presents for each of us!

This morning was my LAST run. The schedule called for 3 miles at planned marathon pace. I got up at 5:15 and was out the door at 5:30. It was 62 degrees and clear (lots of stars) when I started. I had a hard time getting in the groove this morning. I was either running way too fast or too slow. I ended up running the 3 miles in 26:27.

I had thought about getting up tomorrow before work to swim but I think that I need the sleep more. I will take the next two days as rest days. Then it is marathon time!!!! I am getting really excited. The weather forecast for Saturday has improved.

Monday, November 27, 2006

The One That Started It All

While the kids were decorating the tree tonight, I got to look at each ornament as they hung it. My favorites are the one the kids made but I also love our “Santa Riding” collection. MANY years ago, I worked for an engineering firm that at the Christmas party had an ornament swap. That year we got Santa riding on a chicken. A tradition was born. Every year since then we have purchased Santa riding on some animal. What will Santa ride this year????>

Last Speed Workout

This morning I got up at 6:00 for my LAST speed workout. The plan called for

10-20 minute warm-up
6 x 400 (400m RI)
10 minute cool-down

Once again being the lazy person that I am, I just used my programmed Garmin to run in the neighborhood vs. driving to the track. It was cold again this morning. I ran 1.85 mile warm-up in 18:42. I stopped at my mailbox and grabbed a drink of water and then did a 400m RI in 3:57. The first 400 I ran in 1:45. I almost threw up after I finished it so decided that it was too fast. I walked the 400 RI for 4:15. The reminder 400s went like this
400 1:48
RI 3:43
400 1:47
RI 3:47
400 1:48
RI 3:35
400 1:50
RI 3:42
RI 2:56
Cool-down 0.89 miles in 8:51
Average heart rate of 145 bpm.

I don’t know what I was thinking waiting until 6:00 to run because I got home just in time to rush the kids out the door to school. I then came home to shower. After cleaning up, I went back to the school to help decorate for the 2nd grade parent lunch.

Weather forecast in Memphis for Saturday is not looking good. After enjoying 70 degree temps there last weekend, it is upsetting to have to think about running in freezing temps this weekend. Dawn refused to stop at a sporting goods store Friday while we were shopping because she was too tired and hungry, so now I don’t have my cold gear that I wanted to buy. She has offered to go and get us both some cold gear (she is running the 5k and going to be waiting around on me for a LONG time). Is it safe to wear it new for the first time for 26.2 miles?????

My buddy Chris is going to be waiting on me on North Parkway to run my final miles with me and push me to the finish. Diane also said she is going to come down and cheer me on, but she wasn’t sure at what mile marker she would be. Dawn and her son are running the 5K so will be near the finish. Anyone else coming down??? I NEED anyone and everyone willing to help me out. What about other bloggers, anyone going to be in Memphis?

Sunday, November 26, 2006

Black Friday and Last Long Run

Friday was my “rest day”. I got up at 2:30 am with Dawn and her son. We headed out to Best Buy. When we drove through the parking lot we saw people camped out in tents in line. Dawn suggested that we go to the Best Buy in Southaven. So off she drove. We got to Southaven only to find out there wasn’t a Best Buy. Instead we saw a Circuit City with about 50 people in line. I jumped out of the car and asked someone it I could see their ad. There on the cover was what we were after. I ran back on told Dawn to come on. We got in line and waited. It was about 3:15 by then. At around 4 the employees came out and started handing out sale flyers and vouchers. We got all the flyers but were wondering where all the vouchers were. Turns out they only had 22 laptops and something like 18 desktops. The vouchers all got handed out to people in front of us. Dawn went begging. She got a voucher for a $199 desktop. Then someone offered to trade her the desktop voucher for the laptop voucher. She made the trade and she was happy. I decided to give begging a try. I walked to the front of the line and started calling out “Anyone have a laptop voucher they are not using?”. It didn’t take long before someone said “Oh, yea here you can have this one” Yes, I was happy now. I got back in line with Dawn and her son and we waited for the store to open at 5:00. Someone else offered Dawn another desktop voucher and she took it. Once the doors were open we went right in and got in the checkout line. Dawn’s son ran and grabbed the 1 gig memory cards that were on sale for $2.99 while Dawn and I got the computers we were after. It took an hour to get check out but it is so worth it. I am sitting on my bed right now with my new $299 laptop. I got the FREE wireless router connected and now I don’t have to fight my daughter for computer time. The laptop also came with a bag, some internet software and a printer all for free. And because I spent $250+ I also got a free digital camera. After Circuit City we hit Target and Kohl’s for some more great deals. I LOVE shopping the day after Thanksgiving; it is crazy but so much fun.
Like I said Friday was my rest day so that made Saturday my LAST long run day. We were at my mother-in-laws. I got up at about 8:00 and headed out. It is fairly hilly by her house and the goal for the run was 8-10 miles at marathon pace. I didn’t know if I could do 9:00 miles on those hills but I sure was going to give it a shot. Since I don’t know my way around out there I just did an out and back. I ran 5.08 miles out (the extra 0.08 was in case Garmin decided my run back was shorter then the run out) then turned around and headed back.

The hills were tough but I was feeling strong and holding pace. Final time: 1:29:01, 8:54 pace. Splits look like this: 8:41, 8:56, 8:56, 8:47, 8:47, 8:53, 9:09, 9:03, 9:02, and 8:50. I have less then a week now until my marathon. Ekkk! But I have had several good runs here at the end so I am feeling ready.

Thursday, November 23, 2006

Happy Thanksgiving

Hope everyone has a wonderful Thanksgiving. I have so much to be thankful for my family, friends, and health topping the list. I could go on and on but this is a training blog so I will get on with that…

I got up to run at 8:00 this morning. It is beautiful out, sunny and about 40. Today’s schedule called for a tempo run, 2 easy, 3 at ST, and 1 easy. I ran my normal 6 mile route and felt great. The two easy I ran in 9:43 and 9:25. I picked up the pace and ran the 3 tempo miles in 8:18, 8:17, 8:07. Then I slowed it back down and headed home for the final mile, which took 9:49.

Off to shower.

Wednesday, November 22, 2006

More Toning and Riding to Nowhere

This morning it was right back to the Rec Center for Cindy’s 5:30am toning class. After class I went upstairs and rode the stationary bike for 30 minutes, 7.8 miles. I don’t know if stationary miles are equal to road miles but I do know I was soaking wet when I was done.
Now I gotta get busy with the work I brought home.

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Slow Swim-Slow Run

Yesterday I went to the pool and had another slow swim, 1750 yards in 38:12. That pace just isn’t going to fly for tri season.
Today I did my speed work out at 5:00am. Man was it cold!! My cold gear tights were still dirty so I just wore a pair of regular tights. By the time I was done my rear end was frozen.
Anyway the plan was 10-20 min warm up, 5 x 1K (400m RI), 10 minute cool down. Guess there is no taper on speed day. Here’s how it went:
Warm up 1.86 miles in 18:83, 10:10 pace
400 RI 4:53
1K 5:00
400 RI 4:50
1K 5:02
400 RI 5:02
1K 5:01
400 RI 4:47
1K 5:09
400 RI 4:47
1K 5:10
400 RI 4:03
Cool Down 1.06 miles in 11:26, 10:48 pace
Average heart rate 136
I am not overly pleased with the numbers. I had hoped that since it was Tuesday speed would be easier but I guess 5am is 5am. The cold did nothing to make the run easier. My face and rear were both so cold they hurt.
After work I picked the kids up from ESP only to find out there is no ESP tomorrow. WTF, tomorrow is NOT a holiday. What are working people suppose to do?? I called my boss and asked if I could come back to work and pick up something to do at home. What my job lacks in pay it has in flexibility. So tomorrow I get to work at home.
Tonight I went to the 6:00pm toning class and the 7:00 flexibility class. Cindy was feeling tight from her weight lifting competition that she kicked serious butt at, so she really made us work tonight. Both classes were great.

Sunday, November 19, 2006

Just Running

Today was the first time since mid-August that I just set out on a run. No schedule telling me a pace, no schedule telling me a distance. I just ran to run. It was cold and it took me the first two miles to get in a groove and stop thinking about quitting. I ran 6 miles in 57:04.

Saturday, November 18, 2006

Where's the Love???

Today was sunny and about 60 so I set out for a bike ride at about 2:30. The goal was to ride 20 miles in 1:15 or less. I haven’t spent much time in the saddle lately and the rides I have done have been longer, slower rides. I needed a faster ride.
I tried to focus on cadence but I was struggling. I just couldn’t seem to get my speed up and keep it up. I felt like I was riding into the wind but I looked around and it didn’t look windy. I was miserable. Why do I ride? I am not enjoying this. I am cold. The wind hurts my ears. I hate those stupid dogs that insist on chasing me. Why do people want to run me over? And lots more negative thoughts. I made a few turns and then all of a sudden I discovered I had been riding into a strong wind and now it was at my back. I was keeping a great pace, the wind hurt a lot less. This wasn’t so bad after all.
A few more turns and I was riding into the wind again. I decided I am asking for a trainer for Christmas. I can’t do this all winter. Call me a wimp but I hate riding in the cold. I had to finish the ride into the wind and was so glad to be home. 20 miles in 1:15:12. Darn it, missed goal!!

Now, I need some help…I know nothing about trainers. What do I need? Any suggestions?

Non-training story. Yesterday I was trying to watch a movie in my room and the kids were watching TV in the den. A commercial came on for a hair beader that my 6 year old daughter has been trying to tell me about that she wants for Christmas. Since I had told them to leave me alone, she used the TiVo to pause live TV (I don’t even know how to do this), got my son to write down the web address, and then she went to the computer and went to the website for the hair beader. She came in and told me “I found that hair beader I was telling you about, it is on the computer”. I went out to the den and sure enough, there on the computer was the beader. Last night I told my husband the story. He didn’t know that we could pause the TV. He had her show him how to do it. If you have remote problems, ask the 6 year old!

Friday, November 17, 2006

Search Results

Imagine the disappointment the person who did a google search for “training for a sub 2:20 olympic distance triathlon” got when they hit my blog!!

Only 2 Weeks To Go

Yesterday was my scheduled rest day. I did make one huge mistake. I wore 3” heals for cheerleading practice yesterday. Granted these are kindergarten and first graders that I am coaching so they aren’t really doing anything too fancy but my legs were sore after an hour of jumping around in those boots.

Today’s long run was 13 miles at planned marathon pace.
I got the kids to school and started my run at 8:00. We have had two days of steady rain but today the sun was back out. It was about 40 degrees, a little cool but at least it was sunny.
I felt great the entire run. I still have some crap in my chest and would cough it up every now and then. But otherwise a great run. Here are the splits:
9:03, 8:57, 9:00, 9:03, 9:03, 8:45, 8:43, 8:53, 8:58, 9:00, 8:53, 8:54, and 8:48
That’s 13 miles in 1:55:58, 8:55 pace!!!

Good luck to everyone running this weekend. I know TriSaraTops is going for a half marathon PR, E-Speed is tackling a 50 mile run, Rae and Brent are running a VERY hilly marathon, and …I know I am forgetting people. But good luck, I am looking forward to all the reports.

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Cold + Rain + Dark = Running Inside

Yesterday was a cross training day. I got up at 5:30 and went to the Rec Center for a swim. 1750 yards in 37:40. I have a lot of work to be done on my swimming after this marathon.
Then last night I went to Cindy’s toning class. She was a weight lifting competition this Friday so she could not lift. Therefore she just walked around yelling at us. It was a great class despite the fact she was trying to kill us. After toning I stayed for her flexibility class. I love this class and I really needed the stretch. I felt great when I was done.
When I left the Rec Center it was raining. I checked the forecast when I got home and it showed rain this morning. Yuck!! My plan called for 5 miles at MT. I haven’t run inside since Feb or March so I decided to suck it up and run the track at the Rec Center.
I got there right at 5 this morning and got started. I had calculated my target pace for a twelfth of a mile. I ran each of the 60 laps right around target and finished my 5 miles in 43:13, 8:38 pace.

Monday, November 13, 2006

Endless 800's

I spent the weekend trying to shake this cough and I never had time to squeeze in a workout. Two more days of rest. I did do a better job of eating right so the weekend wasn’t a total wash.
Last night I programmed my Garmin with my last 3 speed workouts!!! When I got up at 4:30 this morning it was COLD. I bundled up and headed out for my run. Since I had programmed 3 workouts I forgot how many 800’s were on the schedule today. No problem, my Garmin would tell me what to do.
I ran a 1.87 mile warm up in 18:34, 9:56 pace.
I took a 1:30 rest interval then started the 800’s.
As I was running I thought to myself, last week was 10 x 400, so I bet this week it is 5 x 800.
I did the first 5 in 4:08, 4:04, 4:15, 4:12, and 4:08. I walked the 1:30 rest intervals. After the fifth 800, I walked and prepared to run just in case I was supposed to do 6. Sure enough, Garmin said run another 800. So off I ran. 3:58. Again, I walked the rest interval and was told by garmin to run another 800. Maybe I miss counted. Ran that one in 4:04. Walked again and then was told to run ANOTHER 800. 4:10. I prayed this was the last one. My legs felt like lead and I didn’t even know if I could make it through a cool down. Finally, after the rest interval, Garmin said cool down time. I ran 1.05 miles in 10:55, 10:23 pace.
When I got home I checked the schedule and sure enough there it was in black and white 8 x 800 (1:30 RI). And I thought it was taper time.

Friday, November 10, 2006

A New Running Partner

Last night my husband asked me how far I was going to run this morning and when I told him 20 miles he just looked at me and asked “And when was the last time you ran?” I said Saturday. He just gave me a knowing look. I could tell he expected me to fail.
The girl at work suggested yesterday that I try MucinexD for my cough. Turns out Teacherwoman also suggested it but I just got that comment. Anyway, I stopped by the drug store and picked up a box and took 2 tablets. The stuff really does work but I don’t recommend taking it before attempting a 20 mile run.
I went out at 8:30 to get started on my run only to discover that the battery in my Garmin was low. Luckily I bought my husband a Garmin for his birthday and I had noticed that it was plugged in and fully charged. I grabbed his Garmin and headed back out.
It was a beautiful day, sunny and mid 60’s. I was feeling great. Today’s goal was planned marathon pace plus 30 seconds. So based on my 4 hour goal that makes my target pace 9:39. Since I ran with Ronnie’s Garmin, I don’t have mile splits; he doesn’t have his programmed to lap on mile like I do.
After 4 miles, the battery died in my MPS player. Great no music for 16 more miles. Then at about 4.5 miles I noticed I had a new running partner. A little beagle had joined me. I tried to get him to go home but he just kept running right along with me. I figured he would run a little ways down the road then run out of stream but this little guy stayed with me for the next 11 miles. We had made it back around to the general area where I had picked him up and he dropped off there. He kept me very entertained and detracted. I had to keep him from getting run over several times; he wasn’t the smartest dog I have ever met.
Just about the time I lost my running partner I also started suffering from taking an antihistamine right before running. I swear I could feel my tongue swelling. I was very low on fluids and knew I needed some water. At 18 miles I was passing my house. I toyed with the idea of calling it quits. I knew that all my blogger friends would support me. After all, I had been sick all week. But I knew this was it, my last 20 miler for this training program. Only 3 weeks until my marathon, taper is coming. I HAD to finish. I grabbed a water out of the fridge in the garage and drank all 10 ounces while walking down my driveway. Then I shuffled out the last 2 miles.
Those last 4 miles were HELL and really killed my overall pace (the water stop sure didn’t help the pace either), but I still managed to squeak in just under target. 20 miles in 3:12:18, 9:37 pace.

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

A Hard Choice

Last night I was still coughing pretty bad and when I was getting out my running clothes my husband said, “You aren’t seriously going to run in the morning are you???
I had decided I would see how the night went. My coughing is always worse at night.
The forecast was for rain in the morning so I knew I would be running inside. Didn’t think running outside, sick, in the rain, at 5am was a good idea.
I coughed all night so when the alarm went off at 4:30 I just reset it for 6:00 and went back to sleep.
Turns out just getting ready for work exhausted me, so I don’t think my run would have gone well at all.
I guess I will just rest again today and tomorrow and do my 20 miler on Friday. I hate missing this many runs and the guilt is killing me.

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Help - Advice Needed!!!!

I am thinking I am going to be ok to run tomorrow. So now I need to know which workout is more important speed or tempo. This week called for:

10x400 (400 RI) with warm up and cool down
8 miles at marathon pace
20 miles at marathon pace + 20 seconds

I can’t get all 3 in so which are more important to reaching my 4 hour marathon goal???
I am planning the 20 miler for Friday but which one should I do tomorrow?

Monday, November 06, 2006


Well, I thought if I just ignored it, it would go away. Not so.
Yesterday I attempted a bike ride. It was a beautiful day, perfect for a great ride. I was miserable. The wind blowing in my ears was painful and I could not breathe. I was reminded of those days when I first got my bike and HATED it. I couldn’t wait to be done.
When I finally did get home I went steady down hill.
I went to bed early and did not bother to set my alarm for speed work this morning.
This morning I was still feeling bad so I called in sick to work.
I have spent the morning on the couch and am going to go take a nap now.
Hope this thing clears up soon. I have my last 20 miler scheduled for Friday.

Saturday, November 04, 2006

Goodlettsville Half Marathon Race Report

Two nights of coughing made it really hard to get up this morning when the alarm went off 4:30. Thankfully I had to pick Lana up, otherwise I fear I would have rolled over and tried to go back to sleep.
We had a hard time finding the place but we finally made it there. We rushed to get signed up and collect our shirts and stuff. Last year we got really nice long sleeve tech shirts and lots of stuff in our bag. This year a short sleeve tech shirt and an empty bag. Disappointing!!!
We headed to the start line and jumped in the crowd in what looked to be about the middle. A few brief words and we were off.
I stayed with Lana for about a mile. I just couldn’t hold her pace today. I did have her in sight ahead of me for most of the race but there was no catching her.
My goal today was to break 2 hours. Last years time was 1:59 and change.
I was doing a fairly good job of holding a 9:00 pace but was getting passed by tons of people. I would be sure that I was in last place then there would be someone else coming by me. I tried not to let it effect me but it is hard having that many people blow by you.
We got to the first major hill at about 3.5 miles. I got to the top and thought “that wasn’t as bad as I remember”. The second major hill came at about 8 miles. I was thinking maybe this course isn’t as bad as I remember; maybe I am in better shape. Ha. Hill number two was TOUGH. I continued running, if you call the slow shuffle I was doing running, just praying for the top. I made it and knew I had some time to recover before the last big climb.
Then I had to stop and tie my shoe. Next time I will double knot them.
I got to the last major hill and made it up just fine. The finish line was getting close.
I saw Lana and she cheered me on. The guy just ahead of me looks back and says “Oh no you don’t” and he kicked it in. I really tried to catch him but I just couldn’t.
I got my medal and Lana and I headed over to see what kind of food they had.
Another disappointment. They had chili and some hard bread sticks.
We both needed to get home so we left right away. I was glad I had brought my cough drops and had 3 of them on the way home.
Here are my splits
8:38, 8:44, 8:59, 9:10 (hill #1), 8:50, 8:59, 8:59, 9:28 (hill #2), 9:07, 9:03, 8:50, 8:52, 9:10 (hill #3), and 1:28.
Offical time 1:58:18 8th in age group and 127 overall (I wasn't last)

Friday, November 03, 2006

Getting Ready for Goodlettsville

Yesterday was my scheduled rest day and even though I was not doing my long run today I went ahead and rested. The main reason for resting was that I was just too lazy to get out of bed any early then I had to yesterday.
So this morning I got up at 5:30 and went to the pool. I swam 1750 yard in 37ish minutes. I felt fine while swimming but seem to be in a rut. After the marathon in Dec, I am going to have to work on my swimming more.
Tomorrow is the Goodlettsville half. Lana, Tracy, and I ran it last year for their inaugural event. We made the website, so Lana and I felt it our duty to return this year. There are 3 hills that really kicked my butt last year; I hope I am better prepared this year.

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

10 Miles BEFORE Work

Today the plan called for 10 miles at planned marathon pace. In order to get 10 miles in before work, I had to get up at 4:20.
As I said before, I was very nervous about this run. I haven’t had much luck on very many of my interval or tempo runs using a program where pace is suppose to be very important. So, I REALLY wanted to prove to myself that I could hold marathon pace for 10 miles.
Phil’s advice yesterday was to start slow. So at 4:30am, I started my run nice and easy. I ran the first 3 miles in 9:19, 9:14, and 9:16. I was feeling good but starting to worry that I would NOT be able to make up those lost minutes and average my marathon pace. The next two miles I ran in 8:53 and 8:44. Now my average pace was closer to my goal pace, so I fell back to 9:10 for the next mile. I was still feeling good and ran the next three miles in 8:58, 9:10 and 8:59. The last mile was a final loop around my neighborhood. I tried to push myself but my pace was all over the place. I would run fast for a little bit only to find myself slowing down. I ended up with an 8:39 final mile. So that is a total of 10 miles in 1:30:23, average pace 9:03. I did it and with time to spare!!! Whew that is a load off. It still doesn’t mean that I can manage a 4 hour marathon but it is a step in the right direction.