Sunday, September 25, 2011

Marathon Training Recap: Week 15

75% of the way through with training! And this week I had a great place to run - the Port Orleans resort at Walt Disney World!!

Monday - 48 minute run (5/1 intervals); walking around Disney World
Tuesday - walking around Disney World
Wednesday - 40 minute run (5/1 intervals); walking around Disney World
Thursday - 48 minute run (5/1 intervals); walking around Disney World
Friday - walking around Disney World (half day)
Saturday - 18 mile run (7/1 intervals)
Sunday - rest day

I woke early each morning before my mom and the girls and ran the lighted trails at the resort. I had to change the training around a little bit to accommodate our vacation schedule. Tuesday we had a breakfast at 8 AM which meant we had to leave the room by 7AM, and then we had the Halloween Party at Magic Kingdom and didn't get back until nearly 1 AM. So, obviously, no time to run that day. I ran on Wednesday instead. LOL

We spent Friday morning at Downtown Disney, and left at 2:00 PM to drive home, arriving at 10:20 PM. I went to sleep and woke up at 6:00 to go run. Of course, this meant that I had to do my 18 mile run on tired Disney legs, but it was either do that and get to run with my BFF, or go on Sunday alone. And since it took us 3 hours and 24 minutes, I am glad I wasn't all alone.

I guess it went pretty good. We were able to maintain a fairly even pace through the entire run, and overall averaged 11:20 miles (including 8 water breaks where we stopped completely). This is very encouraging since we have to maintain 14 minute miles for 20 miles to beat the bridge! We should have a 30 minute cushion, plus the time when we usually stop for water but will still be walking during the race.

Only one more long run - 20 miles! It is really absolutely impossible to believe!! Training is nearly done and the race is 5 weeks from today! Now that I'm back from my Disney vacation, I'll be able to devote more time to planning for my trip! :D

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Marathon Training Recap: Week 14

70% of the way done with training... that sure sounds more encouraging than "Just 6 weeks to go!" Though knowing that the marathon is just 6 weeks from tomorrow is very exciting.

Monday - 45 minute run
Tuesday - 40 minute run (7/1 interval)
Wednesday - 42 minute bike ride
Thursday - 48 minute run
Friday - rest day
Saturday - 8 mile run (7/1 interval)
Sunday - rest day

My legs felt like lead all week long. The runs were really, really hard. I had to do intervals on Tuesday because it was hard to run at all. By the end of the week, though, it was getting better.

I have been really wondering lately why I wanted to try this in the first place. It's so painful and trying to train around my family's needs is really hard. I really hope this is worth it. I am tired.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Marathon Training Recap: Week 13

This week's training began well until I came down with a cold. I guess running in the cold and drizzle on Monday and Tuesday really didn't work well for my body.

Monday - Big Peach Sizzler 10K
Tuesday - 35 minute run (adjusted time to take the race into consideration)
Wednesday - rest day (sick)
Thursday - 45 minute run, plus form drills
Friday - rest day
Saturday - 16 mile run, including Operation Soldier Support 5K
Sunday - rest day

Overall, the running part of the training was fine. The key for me is to keep my pace under control. I have to keep re-learning the hard way that, when I don't keep to my training pace, my legs suffer for it. And then the rest of my training suffers as well. Hopefully, this week is the last week that I will have to re-learn that lesson!

I can't believe there are only 7 weeks left until the marathon - and really, only two more LONG RUNS!! 18 miles and 20 miles are all that are left! In between those I just do 8 milers! It's going by so quickly!

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Race Report: Operation Soldier Support 5K

I have to give you a bit of background on why we decided to run a 5K in the middle of our 16 mile training run. My BFF and I have run at this park ever since we started running "longer" runs. It's a wonderful paved trail and the hills aren't too bad. It's longer than most of the trails in the area and it's usually quite busy so I don't have to be worried if I have to run alone. Well, every now and then, we would be doing our regular run and suddenly we'd start to see people running towards us wearing race numbers! It was just so funny to find a race happening in the middle of our regular run. We decided that one day we would have to find one to participate in. Well, that day came today! My BFF found a 5K run that benefits Operation Soldier Support - a ministry of the church across the street from the park that serves deployed soldiers and their families.

We arrived at the park at 6:30, ready to get in a few miles before the race started at 8 AM. The sun is coming up later now, so we didn't get on the trail until 6:45, but we got 2 laps in (about 4.5 miles). We ran across the street to the church, picked up our race bibs and goody bags, ran them back to our cars at the park, and ran back to the church. Then we ran around the church parking lot until time to start.

The race was very, very small - maybe 100 people? I had just told my BFF that morning that we were going to focus on running OUR pace in a race setting where others might be going much faster. It would b good practice for the MCM. Well, that totally did NOT work. We just joined in with the other speedy folks who were out for nice, short 5K, and went out way too fast. By the time I realized what happened, the damage was done. We settled down our pace and took our walk breaks - but still I nearly ended up with a 5K PR. @@

After we finished our race we wanted to keep walking while we waited for the raffles, so we went back to find our friend who was running her 2nd ever 5K. We found her and ran her in - she took 6 minutes off her previous 5K time!! We continued to walk in the parking lot, adding on to our required mileage for the day. We knew it would make our overall pace slower but the time is not the important thing. We did stop walking long enough for the raffles, which we didn't win, but our friend did. Then it was back over to the park to finish up - we had about 5.5 miles left to complete 16.

The starting and stopping 3 times was NOT easy on the legs. And the fast beginning to the 5K was a BAD BAD thing for my legs. My calves were burning. :( And it was dramatically warmer at 9:30 than it had been at 6:45. But we muddled through, keeping a much better pace (not that we had much of a choice! LOL), and finally we MADE IT!! 16 miles - 16.15 on MY Garmin (we use my Garmin for intervals and BFF's for distance) - and it is DONE! Felt awesome, or as awesome as it could be considering that we had to stand around and do a lot of waiting for the race, and the fact that I have had a cold since Wednesday.

The only disappointment was when I got home and realized that my race shirt was way too big. I had asked for an XS but the bag had my name on it and "No XS" written next to it. I guess they ran out of XS or didn't get any to begin with - so they gave me a Medium. That's WAY too big, so I was really bummed. But I gave the shirt to my hubby! He suggested we go out and do the traditional race shirt picture - and he immediately struck MY pose! LOL
Then he needed to redeem himself so he did a "manly pose"! See? There really is never a dull moment around my home! LOL
Overall this race was very nice and I'm glad I ran it. The proceeds go to a great cause and we're nearly always at this park on Saturday mornings anyway! I will definitely run it again next year if I'm able! :) And hopefully the next time I will be able to wear the shirt!

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Shameless

There were finish line photographers at the Big Peach Sizzler.

So I'm posting this picture for the sole reason that I think I look good in it! ROFLOL I have no shame!

Monday, September 5, 2011

Race Report: Big Peach Sizzler 10K

The forecast ended up being very wrong for this race, and I'm glad! Last night when I went to bed, weather.com called for 90% chance of heavy rain. Then this morning at 5 AM when I woke up to get ready, the forecast said 90% of thunderstorms! I was preparing for the worst! But it never did more than drizzle. The wind was a little strong at times, but the course was fairly flat (for Atlanta LOL).

I finally got to wear my "Blue Splatter" outfit from Skirt Sports - very comfy and cute! I didn't take the camera with me, or the Garmin, because of the threat of very wet weather, so I don't have many pics to share.
One side benefit of not wearing the Garmin was that I had to race/run based on how I felt, not on my actual pace moment to moment. I knew that I didn't want to push too hard because this is a high-mileage week. So I think I was able to run at a comfortable race pace without going all out - and I managed to set a PR. OK, so it was only by 15 seconds (ETA: they had only posted gun time! According to chip time, I beat my PR by 58 seconds! WOOHOO!!), but that's really not too bad for not really trying! LOL AND if the time standards hold for next year's Peachtree Road Race, then I'll finally get out of the "F" corral and make my way into the lovely "E" corral. Of course, the standards changed this year, too, keeping me in "F" corral so I'm not counting on much! ;)

Regardless, it ended up being a fun race - though not one I think I need to do over again. I have my shirt with the cute "Peachy" on it (the little Peach character wearing running shoes - it's the local running store's mascot). And the bright orange will certainly be helpful when I'm riding my bike or running in the dark and I need to be spotted! LOLOL
One more race this week is yet to come - this one will be a 5K that we're throwing into the middle of our 16 mile training run! Should be a lot of fun!

Sunday, September 4, 2011

Marathon Training Recap: Week 12

This week begins the pattern of an 8 mile "shorter" run in between each of the increasingly longer long runs. It's the make-or-break time of marathon training!

Monday - 45 minute run
Tuesday - 44 minute run
Wednesday - 40 minute swim
Thursday - 50 minute run, plus form drills
Friday - rest day
Saturday - 8.12 mile run (7/1 interval)
Sunday - rest day

Training went very well this week. The running during the week was a bit longer than usual, but it wasn't too bad. I didn't need to run intervals for any of those runs. The long run on Saturday went well. Just an uneventful week of training, I suppose. I am feeling a little tender today but I think that is mostly from the fact that I sat on my legs/feet while doing laundry yesterday. @@ Laundry is hazardous to my marathon training. I think I should stop doing it!! LOL

Tomorrow I have another race - not just a virtual one this time, either! And we are expecting the remnants of Tropical Storm Lee to come through! So it may not be a run so much as a swim! Be sure to check back tomorrow for the race report and pictures - my BFF got a waterproof camera so we should be able to have a few pics at least! (But no Garmin tracking! LOL)




Saturday, September 3, 2011

Race Report: ROTE Munchkin Run Half-of-a-Half

This time last year I was in California, running the Disneyland Half Marathon as part of the Coast-to-Coast Challenge. As much as I really didn't enjoy that course, I couldn't help but feel sad that I wasn't there again this year. I'm sad that I won't get another Coast-to-Coast Medal. And I'm sad that I won't get to see my friend, Sadie. And I'm sad that I won't get to spend alone time with my Mom. And I'm sad that I won't get to see the folks from ROTE. And I'm sad that I won't get to spend more time at Disneyland.

So many of the ROTE folks were sad about missing out on the DL Half this weekend that they came up with a virtual race for all ROTErs to participate in - the Munchkin Run Half-of-a-Half. The goal is to run/walk 6.55 miles and then reward yourself with Munchkins from Dunkin Donuts!!

My training plan called for 8 miles today so it worked out really well to do the 6.55 miles (half of a half marathon!! Get it??). I printed out my race bib, put on my ROTE gear, and was ready to go!

Here is a picture of me before I got started. The sun was coming up behind me but it was still too dark to tell. On a side note, it was a really beautiful day sunrise today!
The "race" went well - my BFF must have taken the notion of a race seriously because she was truly flying all morning! LOL I keep threatening her with a leash. I think she thinks I'm joking! Ha ha!! ::insert evil grin::

When we hit 6.55 miles, I paused my Garmin (1:09:53) and took a "finish line picture" which I shall not post here because I have the goofiest look on my face! Then we kept on until we hit our 8 miles for today.

On the way home I picked up the Munchkins - plus enough to share with the hungry masses back home! My husband took my "post race" picture below eating my yummy Munchkin, which I think is better than an ill-fitting tee shirt any day of the week! LOL
Hope this becomes an annual event - or maybe any time there is a Disney race there could be a virtual ROTE race for those who cannot attend the Disney race! LOL It sure helps the sadness! :D