Thursday, January 31, 2013

21 Days Left

I am a runner.

It's true.  I am a runner.  Sometime in the past 6 1/2 months, it happened.  I am a runner.  I like to run.  (Don't get me wrong.....there are days when I don't like to run.....days when it is hard....days when I am no good at it.....days when I am slower than usual....days when it hurts.)  The way I know that I am a runner is because today, when I can't run, I want to.  I really want to.  It's been beautiful in Virginia for the past few days.  All I wanted to do was put on those fancy new running shoes and get running.  

My run on Sunday irritated my IT band.  I rested on Tuesday.   Yesterday I couldn't put weight on it when I got out of bed.  Today, it was fine.

I didn't want to chance irritating it again.  But, I had to so something.  I got into my gym clothes, packed up the baby, and headed to the Y.  My plan was to make an appointment for an orientation to the weight machines and then head upstairs to get a couple of miles in on the elliptical.  As usual, my plans changed.  There was an opening in the schedule, so the trainer was able to fit my orientation in today.  I got a mile in on the elliptical.

Now I have a plan for weight training.  I know that I can get some mileage in on the elliptical.  I think I can make my leg healthy for the Princess.

Today's Stats:
1 mile in 11:30 (Obviously that is an 11:30 minute mile.......obviously I am fast on the elliptical.)

PS - Thanks to all of my running friends for their advice on this IT Band mess.  The advice that they have given totally trumps "Motrin and aren't going to die from it."

Sunday, January 27, 2013

25 Days Until the Princess Half Marathon


I woke up this morning and felt like I needed to go for a long run.  I've been nursing a tight IT band and trying to rest it so I will be able to run a half marathon in 4 weeks.  There were only (only....) 3 miles on the schedule today.  My plan was to run a quick and easy 5K.   But, plans change.....

Today was MRTT Winter Runnerland Day!!  I met about 20 girls for a group run.  Some were running 5K, some were running 10K, and a couple were running a half marathon.  (I got the medal for the half marathon because of last week's run, but I ran today just because it was a group run.)   I talked to some girls who were going to be running slow like me.  But, they were going to run 10K.  What's another 3 miles?  I decided to join them.  (Small aside - I wasn't prepared for a 10K.  I didn't have any fuel and I didn't have any water.   I wouldn't need it for 5K so I didn't bring it.  Luckily I had a bottle of water in the car.  I had just finished a pretty big lunch, so I just hoped that it would be all of the fuel that I needed to get through.)

We got started.  We ran up the road to the start of a trail.  The trail was paved for about a mile and then it went to real trail.  We had some snow the other day.  Most of it had melted, but there was still some icy and slushy spots along the way.  The girls I started with were a little slow for me.  (Yep, you read that right....I was faster than someone.)  They ran at my walking pace....which was great while I was walking, but not so great while I was running.  So I just did my thing.  I was feeling good.  I woke up and wanted to run long, so I did.  

Today's run was not without its trials and tribulations.  There was ice.  I was slow.  My fantastic brunch decided to remind me that it was probably not the best choice before a run right about at mile 4 1/2.  It was hard to breathe sometimes.  I must have been leaning forward because my arms and chest got sore trying to keep myself upright.  

BUT!  I ran 6 miles today.

I'm getting slower.  I'm not sure what is causing it.  Maybe the Garmin is just keeping my honest and I have always been this slow.  The slow started when the leg got tight.  I'm not sure.  It's frustrating.

In other news, when we met at the running store, one of the workers overheard me talking about my tight IT band and how the doctor told me to take some Motrin and put some ice on it.  She asked if she could show me something.  Of course I agreed.  She got down on the floor and pressed in my leg.  It HURT.  She confirmed the tight IT band and asked me if I was rolling it.  When I said I was, she asked if I was rolling it at the hip or the knee.  She tsked me when I said at the knee.  She recommended rolling from the hip and tapping my foot while I was doing it.  The tapping can stop when the pain goes away.  She also recommended an Epsom salt bath.  10 minutes in the coldest water I can stand followed by 15 minutes or so in a regular warm (or hot....these runs have been chilling me to the bone) bath.  I haven't been able to try out the bath, but her rolling idea helped.  It hurts like the dickens when I am rolling it, but it makes it feel better.

After the run, we all met back at a pub for food and wine and raffles and fun.  I will definitely run for some wine!!  It was a great evening and I am glad that I got to share it with the MRTT girls!!

Let's review a couple of things....just in case you missed it.
1)  I think we may have cracked the code on the IT band thing.  Motrin and ice are just not going to cut it.
2)  I ran a 10K today.  Except for the IT band thing, NOTHING ELSE hurts.  Remember the day after the Wicked 10K?  I couldn't walk after that.  Every part of my body hurt.  Today I ran 10K and I am walking just fine.  It's not getting easier, but I am getting better.

Today's Stats:
6.2 miles (Yep, I was only going to run 3.1) in 1:28:53 (14:21 minute mile)
Fastest mile:  Mile 3 (13:43)
Slowest mile:  Mile 5 (15:20)
Fastest pace:  9:30

Thursday, January 24, 2013

28 Days Left

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My leg has been bothering me.  I have had 2 runs where I couldn't really run.  I tried to run yesterday and it hurt.   This has me worried, so I called a doctor.  The doctor could see me yesterday. 
Yesterday was also the only day this week that I have free.  The kids were off on Monday for MLK Day and they are off on Friday for a teacher workday.  Yesterday, everyone was at school.  I had 3 hours to myself.  I was afraid that the doctor would ground me from running, so I did the most logical thing I could think of......I got on the treadmill.
I tried to run.  It hurt.  So, I walked.   I walked 3 miles on the treadmill.  I couldn't run, but I got my miles in.  I set the treadmill to 4.0mph (a 15 minute mile) and I got going.  That was FAST....walking at 4.0 mph is not an easy task.  There were a couple of times when I slowed the treadmill down just so I could reset and keep up, but I put it back.....every time.
I finished 3.2 miles in 50 minutes today.  That is a 15.6 minute mile.   Now I know that even if I can't run at the race, I can walk it fast enough.
So then I went to the doctor.  I got an X-ray and then he came in.  He said that I have a thin layer of cartilage on my knees.  It's not terrible, but it's definitely on the thin side.  He gave me some ideas of how to strengthen and protect the cartilage that is there.  He gave me some ideas to cross train for the next few weeks to still keep up my cardio, but take the pressure off my knees.   But, the bottom line is that I have the beginning of IT Band Syndrome.  I didn't do anything wrong to cause just happens sometimes.  He told me to ice after every single run.  He told me to take Motrin before and after runs.  He told me to rest when I can.  Then he told me good luck at the race and call back if I need to. 
Here's hoping modern medicine is right.  I have come too far to be hurt now.
Today's Stats:
3.2 miles in 50 minutes (15.6 minute mile)

Monday, January 21, 2013

31 Days Left

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Something is wrong.  I went out for what I hoped would be a 3 mile run on this beautiful winter day.  It was 50 degrees when I set out for my run today.  My legs weren't sore after the long run this weekend and I was looking forward to getting in a few miles today. 
I started out and my knee felt funny.  It didn't hurt, but it didn't feel right.  I finished my warm up and started my first running interval.  As soon as I took the first step, it felt like sandpaper was rubbing on the side of my knee.  It went away after a minute or so.  After the next walking interval, the sandpaper feeling came back.  It took a little longer to go away.  When I got back to my house after the first lap (3/4 mile), I switched directions.  It didn't help.  By the middle of the second lap, every step in the running interval was sore and walking wasn't much better.  The feeling (it's not me, pain HURTS.  This doesn't hurt.  It irritates me.) didn't change my stride, but it didn't go away either.  I made the executive decision to stop.
This started two week ago.  I felt fine after my 12 mile run.  I didn't feel it until the first run after the long run.  I rested more than usual last week.  I stretched and I rolled it with the massage stick.  I didn't have any problems with that part of my leg during the 13 mile run this past weekend.  When my muscles were sore on Sunday, my knee didn't hurt.  I started feeling it again today. 
So, I am going to take it easy this week.  I might try a mile a day instead of longer runs spread out.  I am going to stretch and roll.  I am going to make this go away.
In other news, today was my first run with my new shoes.  It felt like I was running in sand.  They better hurry up and break in. 
Today's stats:
1.57 miles in 22 minutes (14 minute mile)

Saturday, January 19, 2013

33 days Until the Disney Princess Half Marathon

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Dear Running Gods,
     I am sorry for whatever I did to make you angry.  I am not quite sure what it was but I will do ANYTHING to make it right.  I will do fartleks, hill repeats, speed work for a month a week once or twice to make you smile down upon me once again.  Please stop making my ankles hurt and my legs feel like lead.  Please let me run more than 10 miles without feeling like every step is agony.  Make the soreness go away....just a little I will be able to walk after the race.  Please.....I am begging you. 
Love,   Me
Today I was not the runner that I want to be.  Today I wasn't even the runner that I usually am.   Today was another hard run.  It started slow and ended slower.  It hurt.  The last three miles were slow enough to get me swept at the Princess.  That's all I could think of for the last 3 miles.....I am not fast enough.  I'm never a speed demon, but today I was not fast enough for 3 miles. 
I got up super early on this Saturday morning.  I got dressed in two layers to ward off the 29 degree start.  I had my usual pre-run breakfast.  I drove 40 minutes to the Oceanfront to meet some other runners.  (Just so you know, that was the last time I saw those other runners.  They took off, ran fast, and were gone by the time I finished.)  I knew that I couldn't even pretend to keep up with an 8:00 pace, so I just did my thing.  The training plan had 14 miles for today.  I was going to run 7 miles north and then 7 miles south for 14 miles.  I got going.  After 2 miles, the boardwalk ran out so I moved to the sidewalk.  When that ran out, I moved to a feeder road.  This was a new route that I hadn't even mapped out....I was following a pink jacket that was with the group I started with, but was way ahead of me.  At just under 5 miles, the feeder road ran out too. I knew which direction I needed to go, but there was no sidewalk to take me there.  The fast people had made the turn around 2 miles ahead and passed me again.  Clearly they had been running on the side of the road....a road that is notorious for people getting hit by cars. I was all alone.  I was not about to be a statistic, so I turned around at 5 miles.  I knew that I had a little bit of room (probably a mile or so) at the other end of the boardwalk, so I figured I would make the lost distance up there.
At about 5 miles, my legs started to feel a little heavy.  I lowered my running intervals from 3/1 to 2/1.  I kept that up for about 2 more miles and then my legs felt like lead.  I knew that if I was going to keep going, I had to walk more.  I dropped the intervals to 1/1.  I got back to the boardwalk and ran 40 blocks to the other end.  I looked down at the Garmin and saw that I was only at 11 miles.  At the end of the Boardwalk (over a few streets, but you get the idea) is a bridge over the inlet.  I decided to add the hill.  If Disney is going to make me run up and around an overpass at mile 11, I needed to practice a hill at mile 11 when the opportunity presented itself.  I made my way from the Boardwalk to the road and got myself up and over that bridge.....and then up and over it again so I could get back to my car.  I got back on the Boardwalk and ran the 18 blocks back to the street that would take me to my car.
Things I didn't do today:
  • I didn't get to 14 miles.  I stopped the Garmin at 13.1.  There was just at a 1/2 mile from that point to my car.  I didn't do 14, but I did do 13.6.  Today we are going to round up. 
  • I didn't stick with my intervals.  I dropped from 3/1 to 2/1 to 1/1. 
  • I didn't always start running when the watch beeped.  There were lost of times that I just walked.
  • I didn't keep pace.  I was slow from the start and only got slower.  
  • I didn't stop moving.  I may not have done my whole 14 miles, but I did over 13.1.  I know now that my body can move forward for a half marathon.  I can get across the finish line.
Things I did do today:
  • I RAN A FREAKING HALF MARATHON.   If I can do it here, then I can do it in Disney....and then again back in Virginia Beach.....and then in Washington DC.   I can do this!
  • I walked....a lot.  I called my husband at mile 6 and then again at mile 11.    I needed him to tell me that I was doing great and I could finish.
  • I went over a bridge at mile 11 when my legs were tired.
  • I tried Jelly Belly Sports Beans.  They were DELICIOUS!!!  They are my new favorite thing.
  • I finished 13.1 miles in less than 3:30 (which is Disney's cut off time.)  Even though I had 3 miles that were over pace, the other 10 miles were fast enough to keep me under pace overall.  I am a little worried about my picture stops, so I am going to pick my top 3-4 MUST HAVE picture stops and save the rest for another year.
This was the last "long" run before the Princess.  February 21 (the day we fly out!) can't come soon enough.  I am ready!
Today's Stats:
13.1 miles in 3:14:04 (14.49 minute mile)

Thursday, January 17, 2013

35 Days Left

Doesn't THIS
Adrenaline GTS 13
Look a lot like THIS???
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In case you are wondering, that glass slipper on top is going to carry me across the finish line of the Disney Princess Half Marathon in just over a month.  My other shoes aren't that old.  There are about 200 miles on them.  But, when I bought them way back in August, the saleswomen suggested that I break in a new pair right before the race.  It seemed silly then.  However, way back in August, I was registered for 1 half marathon.  I wasn't even sure I would be able to finish that one.  My how things have changed.  Today I am registered for 3 half marathons and the last thing I want in the middle of all of that is to have to break in new shoes.  So, I jumped the gun a little and bought them before I hit 500 miles.  Oh well.  Now I have 2 pairs of shoes to work real running people.
While we are on that topic.....the real running people topic.....let's talk about these new shoes for a minute.  They are Brooks running shoes.  That may not seem to exciting to most people, but to me it makes me real.   REAL runners wear Brooks running shoes.  They are in both Runner's World and Running Magazine every.single.month.  I mean, my Asics were bought a running store, not at Target, so that was "real," But now I have a pair of BROOKS.  Let's follow the logic - If A=B, then B=C.  Fast people wear Brooks (A).  I now wear Brooks (B).  Therefore, I must be fast (C).  Hey, a girl can dream.
Since I bought new shoes today and I am running forever on Saturday, I thought that I needed to go for a run in my new shoes today.
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 Epic Failure.  I planned all week to run today.  I didn't run on Tuesday.  We spent the weekend with the pukes at our house.  I was dealing with that on Tuesday.  I also couldn't take my sicko children to the Childwatch at the Y.  No run.  That left today.  I woke up this morning feeling queasy and with sharp pains in my stomach.  (So, I went shopping....great plan.)  I came home and nothing had come of the yucky feelings, so I still planned on the run.  It's cold and wet and rainy, so I didn't want to run outside and I really didn't want to tempt the fates and end up throwing up all over the Y gym.  So I ran on my treadmill.
Have I mentioned how much I hate the treadmill?  I got going and felt pretty good.  5.5 mph running for 3 minutes, 4.0 mph walking for 1 minute.  I was able to keep that up for exactly 12 minutes....then I starting sweating and panting and getting dizzy and  feeling puky.  So I slowed to a 3.5 mph walk. When the room stopped spinning and the tummy stopped gurgling, I tried a 5.2 mph run and a 3.7 mph walk.  I kept slowing down until I was a 5.0 mph run and still felt yucky at the walking time.  (Amazingly, I felt okay during the run.....stopping made me feel sick.) After 2 miles of this, I called it quits.  (Plus, my baby has vaulted out of his bed and came upstairs to join us, which prompted screaming from his brothers.  No nap = no run.)
All in all, 2 miles is better that nothing.  The pukes better come soon if they are going to come or just pass me by.  I have 14 miles to run on Saturday.  Then my long runs are done and it's taper time for the next month until the Princess. 
Today's Stats:
2.25 miles in 30 minutes  ( 13.3 minute mile...considering how bad I felt on that treadmill, I'll take it.)

Saturday, January 12, 2013

40 Days Until the Disney Princess Half Marathon

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Here are some things that did NOT happen on my run today:
1 - Nobody threw up on me.  (I cannot say the same thing for other times in my day.)
2 - Nobody cried.  (Nope, not even me.)
3 - The music I was hearing was NOT from a Music Together class.  (Thank goodness....I am going crazy with The Train Song and Old Blue in the car.)
4 - I was not fast.  (News flash, I know.)
Today, I ran to escape my life.  Something on the side of my knee has been acting up since my run on Tuesday.  It's not my usual knee swelling and's an ache on the outside of my left knee.  I am praying to the running gods that it's not an IT band injury.  It's not's just sore.  It's sore when I get out of bed in the morning and it is sore most of the day.  I didn't feel anything yesterday, but it was back again this morning.  Running didn't make it feel any worse, but it didn't make it feel any better either.
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It's been a rough week.  I've been covered in poop or puke at one point on 4 out of the last 7 days.  My husband didn't come home when he was supposed to and I missed my choir rehearsal.  I haven't been able to run. My only morning "off" was spent at the dentist getting two cavities filled. I am petrified that I am going to get whatever is being to lovingly shared at our house. 
So, today I just took it slow. I needed to be out there.  It felt good.  I'm glad I did it.  There are 40 days left until the race.  40 days.  That's how long people give up chocolate before Easter.  40 days is really not very long.  The race is 6 weeks from tomorrow.  That's 18 more runs.  Next week is the longest run before the race.  I have to do 14 miles.  After that, it's all downhill.  I have a 14K (just under 9 miles) race two weeks before the Princess.  There is a light at the end of the tunnel.  All of the weeks and miles of training are just about over.  It's almost race day. 
Today's Stats (from the Garmin):
3.1 miles in 39:38 (12:45 minute mile)

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

44 Days Left

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I was a little worried about today's run.  It was the first run after my 12 mile run this weekend.  It took me every bit of 2 days to stop being sore after that run, so I wasn't quite sure what today would hold.
My life is hectic....but, really, is there a mom who doesn't have a hectic life?  In order to get my run in today, I knew that I would have to go to the YMCA and put my kiddos in Child Watch.  Since the big boys had swimming lessons this afternoon, it was most logical to run in the afternoon....just before swimming lessons while we had to be there anyway.  I figured that I would have to use the treadmill even though it was a BEAUTIFUL, 60 degree winter day.   
After I got everyone loaded up in the car and into the Y, I discovered that I can run outside while the kids are in Child Watch as long as I have my phone on me.  I took advantage of the gorgeous day and ran outside.  It was a new route on a sidewalk along busy streets and then through some quiet neighborhoods back to the Y.
Amazingly, it felt really good.  I thought that I was plodding along until I looked down at my watch and realized that I was actually going pretty fast (for me).  I am a little sore after the run tonight.  I am not normally sore after short runs, so maybe I overdid it a little.  But, all in all, if was a good run.  It felt good.  The intervals weren't too hard.  I was a great day for a run.  I'm glad I got out there and I got my run in.  
Running win today!
Today's Stats (from the Garmin):
2.78 miles in 32:50 (11:50 minute mile)
Some fun facts:
*Average pace - 11:50 min/mi.
*Average moving pace - 9:07 min/mi.  (Not sure why there is such a discrepancy, but it's a glimmer of fast.
*Best pace - 7:52 min/mi.  (If only I could keep this up for longer than a second or two!)

Saturday, January 5, 2013

47 Days Until the Disney Princess Half Marathon

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Today I set out to finish what I started (and couldn't finish) two weeks ago.  Today I ran 12 miles.  I didn't really have a choice.  I ran 6 miles up the road and then I had to get back to my car.  It's a lot easier to find the will power to keep going when you don't really have the option to stop.
The run this morning started EARLY.  I got up at 6 to eat and get to the Dismal Swam Canal Trail to meet with some of the Hampton Roads Runners.  It's a local (free!) running group that meets at races and for group runs all over the area.  I have been following them on Facebook and Meetup for a couple of months, but I was never brave enough to actually go out and run with them.  Faced with a 12 mile run after a DNF on the last long run, I found a group run that worked for my mileage and my schedule.  I knew going out that they would be running WAY faster than me, but I was excited to try out the Canal Trail with some other people.  When I say "with," I really mean that we were on the same trail at the same time.  It was COLD while we were waiting for a few others to get there.  I wore long sleeves with a short sleeved shirt over top, long running pants, my rocking hat, and my gloves. 
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I got there and found the people I was supposed to meet.  We headed to the trail head and got going.  They took off at their pace and I plodded along at mine.  I knew that I would wear myself out if I even tried to keep up with them, so I just did my own thing.  After a while, they were gone and I was on my own.  The Dismal Swamp Canal Trail is an old road that had been kept up as a walking/running/cycling/horseback riding trail.  It goes 8.5 miles toward North Carolina and is marked every quarter mile.  (There are signs warning you about bears.   I'm not sure what I would have done if I had run into a bear this morning.)  Today, it was the site of a local running club's winter distance series.  There were people all along the trail setting up water stops and turn around points.  It was nice to see people.  That road could get long and lonely.
It's amazing how easy 6 miles is when you have to run 12.  I got to the 6 mile turn around point pretty easily.  Right at the turn, the men from the running group had already turned at the 7 mile point and were heading back.  They asked how I was doing and kept on going.  About that time, my ankle started to hurt.  I stopped and retied my shoe to try and help.  (It did for a couple of miles.)  At about 9 miles, the leaders of the distance series race started to pass me.  I saw my super fast friend, Susan, and conjured up some energy to give her some enthusiastic support.  There were distance series runners for the next two miles.  That was the best (while not the easiest) 2 miles of the run.
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So many of those runners, who had just started their runs and who were running fast enough to make it look easy, shouted encouragement to me as we passed one another.  There were a lot of "great job" and "keep it up" and even just "good morning."  It lifted me up.  It helped me keep going.  At mile 11, one of the women that I met earlier in the morning had caught up with me and was passing me.  She asked me how I was doing.  By that point, I had gone a mile farther than I had ever run before.  I told her that every step was one step further than ever before and that I was tired.  I didn't even get into how much my legs hurt.
I walked more in the last 2 miles.  I would run for about 2 minutes and 15 seconds and walk for about a minute and a half.    It took everything I had to get going again when it was time to run.  I got SLOW.....very slow,  But, I finished.  And next time, it will be easier.
But for now, my body hates me.....
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I forgot to turn on my Garmin until a quarter mile in, so my Garmin time is a little off. I did my 12 though. Now I only have 1 mile left. I can do anything for 1 mile. My husband put it into perspective for me. I train at about a 13 minute mile and the pace requirement is a 16 minute mile. That gives me 39 minutes of buffer time. I think that I could crawl a mile in 39 minutes. I can really do this....I can finish a half marathon and I can do it without getting swept!
Today's Stats:
12 miles in 2:37:41 (13.1 minute mile)
From the Garmin:
11.8 miles in 2:34:41 (13:06 minute mile)
Moving time:  2:32:41 (12:57 minute mile)
I'll take it!

Friday, January 4, 2013

48 Days Left

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I am seriously hoping this is true.  Yesterday was supposed to be my running day.  As usual, I had a lot going on.  To ensure that I ran as scheduled, I got dressed first thing in the morning in my running clothes.  I even wore my running shoes to the commissary.  (I NEVER wear my running shoes out and about.  I wear my running shoes to run.  I have my old running shoes for out and about.)  I planned my dinner so I could run when my husband got home from work and dinner was cooking in the oven.  I would get home from my run and pull dinner out of the oven with a smile.  (Just add pearls and high heels and I am June Cleaver.)  Then my husband was late coming home from work.  I still pulled dinner out of the oven with a smile, but I didn't get the run in beforehand.  After dinner, we got the boys to bed and I was done.  I was sit on the couch, don't even talk to me about the fact that we have a treadmill upstairs done.  I felt a little bad about it.....just a little.
This morning was a new day.  I had to get my run in.  I got up, got dressed, got my kids to the bus and then got going.  It was a little chilly this morning.  Chilly enough that I put on a sweatshirt over my running clothes (but not so chilly that I didn't get roasty hot after about a mile.)  Since I was a couch potato yesterday, I had to keep today's run short so my legs didn't get too tired for tomorrow's long run.  (That's the line I am using anyway.  I could sell it in a couple of ways....I was cold (and then hot), I was hungry, I just didn't really want to do it....a number of reasons excuses.)  I did get a mile and a half in.  That's why I am hoping that fairytales (and half marathon finishes) come true one mile at a time.  Because sometimes, I only have a mile in me.
Today's Stats:
1.54 miles in 23:04  (14:58 minute mile)
A few notes about today's run:
*I walked the full 5 minute warm up because it was cold and I sort of woke up and got going. Normally I walk about 3 minutes to warm up.
*I stopped and talked to my mom while she was out getting her newspaper.  That ate about 3 minutes.  (I am not sure how I can or even if I can pause the Garmin.)  If you take off the talking time, the new stats are 1.54 miles in 20:04 or a 13.0 minute mile.  That sounds a little closer to accurate.
Get ready for tomorrow.....12.5 miles.  It's going to happen. 

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

51 Days Left

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This morning, I got up and started 2013 with the Hair of the Dog 5K.  The website said to wear your New Year's garb - from formals to pajamas.  Since we are boring and have three little ones at home, my New Year's Eve was spent in my pajamas.  I fed the monkeys, gave all most of the instructions to the babysitter, and headed down to the Oceanfront for the my pajamas.  Just FYI - Pajamas are not appropriate clothing for running.....let alone running in today's weather.
The drive to the beach was very much like the drive for the Neptune Festival 8K.  It was raining.  the closer I got to the beach, the harder it rained.  The biggest difference was that it was warm in September when I was faced with running the the rain.  Today it was about 48 degrees and raining.  I didn't have a coat and I wasn't wearing fabric that would support running in the rain.  You see, the last forecast I saw before I went to bed said that rain would move in "later in the day."  That obviously means 8:30am.  I seriously considered stopping at the Target that I drove past to pick up some appropriate running clothes for the weather.  I decided to suck it up and just go with it.  I also put my race t-shirt underneath my pajama shirt for a little extra cotton-y warmth and because I didn't want to walk back to my car in the rain. 

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After I checked in a got my shirt and my bib, I met up with my Moms Run This Town friend, Kris.  We stood under an awning to wait for the race to start.  She is faster than me, so once the gun went off, she took off with a promise to meet me at the end.  I did see her run past me after the halfway point turn. 
Luckily, the rain slowed down a bit and I warmed up once we started.  We had some moments of drizzle, but all in all, it wasn't a terrible day for a run.  My new Bondi Band hat kept my ears warm and my head dry and my new Handana kept one of my hands warm and gave me something to wipe my nose with when it decided to start running.
The run today was easy and work, all at the same time.  It was easy because all of a sudden it was the halfway point and we were turning around and heading back to the start.  It was work because I decided to race a lady that was next to me.  (She may or may not have known that I was not going to let her cross the finish line before me.)  We started the race together. (Her family met her 4 times on the race course.  It was really cute.  Mine was at home with the babysitter.  No family love for me!)  The problem was that she would pass me during my walking intervals.  I would get back in front during the running intervals, but then the watch would beep and she would get in front again.  That irritated me, so I was determined to beat her.  So, I ran hard during the running intervals and walked as fast as I could during the walking intervals.
I had hoped to cross the finish line in under 36 minutes.  I didn't do it.  I won the race with the lady, but I was 30 seconds over my goal.  I crossed the finish line in 36:26 according to the official results (36:30 according to the Garmin.)  I was 263 out of 434 runners and 134 out of 235 women.  My age grade was 39.51%.  (I'm not sure what that means.  I do know that I finished 14 out of 24 runners in my age group.  I ran an 11:45 minute mile.
Now for the MOST exciting part!!!  The race had an extra category.  They called it the Heavy Kevy's Weight Challenge.  67 women gave their weight for the challenge.  I finished 19 overall in seconds per pound!  (That's the closest I will EVER get to the top of the leader board, so I will take it!!)  Top 20 baby!!
I saw a status on Facebook that said yesterday I said that I would be running a half marathon next year.  Today I can say I am running a half marathon in 2 months.  What a difference a day makes!!  (Not only that, but I am running 3 half marathons this spring and maybe another in June and another in October....I'll keep you posted.)
Today's Stats:
3.1 miles in 36:26 (11:45 minute mile)
Well on my way to a race a month!