Wednesday, August 31, 2011

3.5m Fueled by Frustration

Week 3, Day 2:  3.5m Track Workout

Today I was busy from the time I woke up to the time I should have been going to bed. I'd already put off Tuesday's track workout, so I had to figure out how to fit it in today. I was not going to have the luxury of using a track and my hubby wasn't going to be home in time to allow me to go to one. So, my creative juices started flowing. I measured the distance around the pasture and figured I'd have to run around it an absurd amount of times to get all my sprint repeats done. Not going to happen.
Next option took me to the hardware store. I came home with colored duct tape (I didn't know there was such a thing) and marking paint. I put Fats in the stroller and down the road we went marking distances along the road so I could do my sprints between markers.
It was a cooler day and a storm was moving in. I had nervous, anxious energy from dropping my son off for his first day of Kindergarten. I had a crazy amount of stress and frustration ready to explode out of me from situations that arose the day before. All of this fueled me through my run.
 My training plan with splits:
 800 meter warm-up
 400 meter sprints (5x) progressively getting faster and with 45 second rest between laps.
 3-4 minute rest
 400 meter sprints (5x same as above)
 800 meter cool down
As I started my warm-up, it started raining and blowing. It was raining so hard I could barely see where I was going so I ran in the house and put on my visor. I was already sopping wet and needed to reference the splits I wrote on a sticky note.  So, off I went to the house again and put the sticky note in a plastic baggie. Then, I put the baggie in our mailbox so it wouldn't blow away. Genius!
I ran 3.5 miles in 34:47 with an average pace of 9:55, including a mile of warm-up and cool down!   I ran off all the tension in my body and had a finish time to prove it! I've never run that fast in my life. I felt better when I was done before I started.  Time will tell if it ever happens again.

Sunday, August 28, 2011

5m Woo Hoo

Week 3, Day 1: Five Mile Run

Tonight I accomplished something that I’ve never done before; I ran five miles without stopping or walking!  I had a constant, negative self-talk going on in my head, but I pushed through the doubt and just kept running.  I geared up with my not-so-sexy reflector vest and water belt.  I put Nuun in my water bottles and set out.  It was another HOT summer night and I finished in the dark completely drenched in sweat.  I had a goal time to finish in an hour and I nailed it on the nose without a minute to spare.  Total time: one hour.  Pace: 12 min/mile.  I’m happy.  Life is good.

Saturday, August 27, 2011

2.75m I'm a Skirt Convert

Week 2, Day 4

I had another dead Garmin battery and another night of guessing how long I’d been running.  Obviously, I’m not a quick learner.  I was exhausted yesterday, so I postponed my training until today.  I chose my route because I was in search for a key that might have dropped on the road.  I did a slow jog down the road and back keeping an eye out for a lost key.  It felt good to be moving and the key search kept my mind of the distance and the heat.  I wore a pair of running shorts and was quickly reminded why I’ve become a running skirt convert.  Unless you are Barbie, I would expect other runners to understand chafing.  My shorts were short, it was a bazillion degrees outside, and I was sweating.   When I run, I intentionally make sure my thick thighs do not meet by covering them with compression/spandex shorts.  My not-so-sexy behind does not need to be seen by the world.  Thus, the running skirt is a perfect solution for me.  The skirts I wear come with compression shorts under them to keep my friction under control.  Then, the skirt adds a nice feminine touch while covering what needs to be covered.  I LOVE the skirts from Running Skirts (

On the topic of running skirts, I just bought this one to wear at the Run Like a Girl Half-Marathon in October (  Check it out!  I have a great group of women joining my Sole Sister’s team.  It is going to be a blast and an experience the gals will never forget. 

Thursday, August 25, 2011

4.78m Overshot

Week 2, Day 3:  3-4 miles easy

Tonight I dressed in my obnoxiously bright, florescent green running shirt and white skirt to help me be visible as dusk set in.  Too often our neighborhood turns into a super-speedway and I get nervous when the drivers don’t see me.  There aren’t any sidewalks, so it’s a free-for-all.
I planned the route in my head before I left and went slow, steady, and RELAXED my upper body.  My easy pace is slow enough that speed walkers could cruise right by me, but I don’t care because I’m moving.
The first mile was hard.  My legs felt heavy and my neck and back were still tight.  As I pushed through, I felt better and lighter.  My aim was to finish just under or at four miles, but when my Garmin chirped that I was at mile four, I estimated I was still about a half mile from home.  I thought about walking the rest of the way, but figured it would just take too long so I kept running.  Another .52 miles I was home, and  then I walked for .26 to cool down.
I realize that I overshot a bit on the mileage, but I felt good at the end of the run.  The 13:00 pace is probably why.  Tomorrow I’m scheduled for 35 minutes of cross training.  I think I may choose yoga to help stretch out my muscles.  We’ll see.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

4.25m With a Side of Ibuprofen

Week 2, Day 2: Track Workout

Yesterday was another track workout and another four miles of mind numbing circles. I only had one distractor with me instead of two, so I was able to focus better on what sequence I was on during my repeats. What I did discover was there are eight lanes on a track (I’m probably the only one who didn’t know that) and I had to repeat my sprints eight times. How convenient? Very convenient because I started my first one in the eighth lane and by my final sprint I was in the first lane. This helped me to not think so much and just run. Because I ran the track this way, my workout ended up being 4.25 miles instead of 4 miles which was fine by me. I finished in 48:22 with an 11:23 average pace.

Thank God I finished when I did because I was slowly being taken over by the high school cheerleaders starting their practice smelling like the Hawaiian Tropic oil they just sprayed on so they could “get a tan today.” Wow, did that smell bring back memories of my high school years!

Yesterday I was smart and armed myself by wearing my compression socks to help “wrap” my shins. Last week my shins talked trash to me the whole time I was sprinting and then for days after. This time, my shins felt better and I could focus on sprinting at 90%. I thought I’d done a good job until this morning when I woke up and my shoulders and neck hurt so bad I could hardly pick up my son. This shouldn’t have been such a surprise to me because I had focused so much on my shins and laps, I didn’t notice how I would tense my shoulders and neck when I was pushing through the sprints. Duh, I’d been so good about focusing on form and relaxing through my runs that I completely blew it yesterday and now I’m paying for it today. So, I started the day off with my normal breakfast, but added a side of ibuprofen.

Sunday, August 21, 2011

3.52m Running in the Dark

Week 2, Day 1:  45 minutes easy run

The nights are quickly creeping up as I often venture out about the same time, but todays run I ended up running home in the dark.  I made sure to charge my Garmin to ensure I wouldn’t have a repeat of last week’s dead battery.  Even though it was working, I still had no idea how long I had been running because I didn’t know how to turn the backlight on to read my watch!  It was too dark to read it, and I wasn’t going to chance pushing random buttons and mess up my time.  It was another successful guessing game because I finished back at my driveway at 45:17!  My pace was 12:51.

Again, I focused on my form and consistency in pace.  I ventured out with the goal of enjoying the run despite having eaten a LARGE, late dinner.  I went slow and steady and didn’t have any issues.  It was a beautiful summer evening and I know that they will soon come to an end.  Until they do, I will enjoy them.

Saturday, August 20, 2011

3m Award Winning Day

Week 1, Day 4

My training assignment today was “30 minutes or cross-training,” so I met my friend Lisa in Medical Lake to do the Strides for Strong Bones 3 miler with her.  Well, I use the term “met” loosely because she was there prompt and early and I was praying I would make it before the start.  In my typical fashion, I cruised in right as it was starting.  The problem…I hadn’t even parked my car. 

I quickly texted Lisa to let her know that I was there so she could go ahead and start.  In lightning speed, I got Fats strapped in the stroller, gear in the bottom, coffee in the cup holder, and I started running.  No one was at the start line, so I prayed I was heading the right way.  After I found Lisa, I had her push the stroller while I took off my sweatshirt.  To my surprise and relief, she continued to push the stroller for the remainder of the race! 

It was a relatively small crowd, and Lisa and I cruised past quite a few people as we were busy chatting, catching up on the months since we last saw each other.  Before we knew it, we were crossing the finish line and noticing that there were not very many others there before us.

When the awards were announced (given 5 deep in each age group), Lisa and I both won 3rd place in our age divisions!  Even with her pushing Fats in the stroller for me! She was a super trooper and I’m so proud of her.  She has worked so hard to overcome a setback. She is even considering doing her first half marathon next year…considering being the key word.

We don't know our finish time because Fats was fascinated with my Garmin and apparently restarted the timer on my watch when I was holding him.  He also loved the medal and did a taste test on it.

It was a good day, for a great cause, and with great company.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

3.17 Restless Run

Week 1, Day 3

Today was actually a rest day, but I was very restless.  It was a stressful day, which started with my son getting his shots for school.  (Last time it took three of us to hold him down while he was screaming.)  Needless to say, the opportunity to run arose and I took it.   I won’t be able to run tomorrow as my training calls for, so I did the run tonight.

“Three miles easy” ended up being 3.17 miles in 35:22 with 11:10 average pace.  My “easy” run was probably closer to a medium run, but it felt great so I went with it.  Tomorrow will be my rest day, then I will meet a friend for a walk on Saturday.  I’m looking forward to it.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

4.06m Track Workout

Week 1, Day 2

I went to the nearest high school track with my kids in tow. By the time I got out there, I was surrounded by football practice and the heat of the day was creeping up. Before I started, I called my cousin to make sure I was interpreting the workout correctly:

800 meter warm up (track)
8 x 400 (1 lap) @ 90% effort with a 200 meter (1/2 lap) walk recovery
Finish with an 800 m cool down (walk or jog)

Once he saw the track, DD decided he wanted to run a lap with me. He has the potential to be a great runner someday. Despite wearing his cowboy boots (and me telling him he needed to wear his running shoes today), he ran one lap at a consistent 8:30 pace!  When my other munchkin got restless, I would push him around the track with me. When neither was with me, I would I circle back to see DD pushing his brother around in the stroller and waving a WSU Cougar flag at me like I was about to finish a race. I felt a little like we were part of a circus show.

It felt good to get my workout done early. I did lose track of which lap I was on since my focus kept being interrupted by my kids. In the sprints, my shins reminded me that in high school I used to tape them before races. My lungs reminded me that I’m not young anymore. I have a long way to go, but excited that this journey has just started. 

Final stats: 4.06m/47:15/11:39pace

Monday, August 15, 2011

DetermiNation Training Begins!

Week 1, Day 1
Today was Day #1 of my DetermiNation Team training! My assignment was a 40 minute easy run. As I headed out, I felt good and forced myself to go slow and steady. I know an easy run has a pace you can talk through, but when you are training alone that is hard to go by. I decided if I could sing along with the songs on my Ipod, I was okay. A quarter of a mile in, my Garmin died, so I was on my own to determine when I'd completed my 40 minutes. I ran a familiar loop around the neighborhood and felt great the whole way. It surprised me how "easy" the run was, which made me question my pace. When I got home, I calculated how long I'd run by adding up the minutes of the songs I listened to on my Ipod. Total song time elapsed: 43 minutes! Because I intentionally ran at a slower pace, I estimated my distance about 3.3 miles. Not having any experience with a training plan, this is all new to me. I'm keeping my mind open and my legs moving.

Saturday, August 13, 2011

5K Walk for Wishes

I took my kids and went to the Make a Wish Foundation's Walk for Wishes 5K. I pushed both in the stroller most of the way.  My oldest was excited to get a "race" shirt, dinosaur painted on his face, balloon sword, and slinky toy. The snacks were an extra bonus for him.  It was a great walk for a great cause.

Friday, August 12, 2011

I'm a DetermiNator!

I got my welcome packet and team shirt today for the American Cancer Society's DetermiNation Race Team!  I will be running with the team in the Rock 'n' Roll Phoenix Half Marathon on January, 15, 2012!  I cannot do it without the support from my friends and family.  Please go to
to make a donation to help save lives.  Don't have much to give?  How about a donation of $1 for every mile I will run ($13.10)?  Anything helps.  Thanks SO much for helping me achieve a dream of helping others.

4.68m Centennial Trail

This morning I took another walk with Sue and pushed Fats in the stroller.  More talking and walking.  I remembered that I have a 5K tomorrow with Walk for Wishes and feel really guilty that I didn’t actively fundraise for the cause.  Dennis is excited to go and be in the “race” tomorrow.  He did a great job last year and I look forward to taking him again this year. 

Thursday, August 11, 2011

6.48m Split Workout

4.48m Centennial Trail: 
I met Sue again, same place, same time.  Pushing Fats in the stroller we walked and talked again.  I think I did most of the talking (which I’m sure doesn’t surprise anyone.)   We made a date to meet again tomorrow, sorry that it will be the last time we get to walk before she starts back to work on Monday.  Where did the summer go?

2.0m Around the Block: 
Later that evening, still dressed in my workout attire (yes, I’m a workout clothes junkie and slob), I decided I to go out for a slow short jog.  I started out running the first mile in 10:56.  My legs felt great, my breathing was comfortable then suddenly my stomach decided that it wanted to donate back the taco soup I ate for dinner.  Luckily, I didn’t get sick, but thought it was a good time to walk for a minute and turn back.  A 12:05 mile later and with a sigh of relief I was back home.   I won’t make that mistake again.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

4.42m Centennial Trail

I met up with my friend Sue and we walked along the Centennial Trail.  Pushing Fats in the stroller, Sue and I just walked and talked.  Just under four and a half miles later, we found ourselves back at our cars.  We enjoyed it so much we made a date to do it again tomorrow.

Sunday, August 7, 2011

4.16m Neighborhood Loop

Tonight I worked on my form, stride, and staying light on my feet. I took it slow and without music so I could stay focused. I did a warm up with intervals.
Mile 1: walked (15:05)
Mile 2: walked 2 min/jogged 1 min (14:08)
Mile 3: jogged 1 min/walked 1 min (12:50)
Mile 4: jogged 2 min/walked 1 min (11:22)

My average pace was 13:28.  I don't mind because I am trying to train myself to run correctly before I train to run faster.  Hopefully it will work.

Saturday, August 6, 2011

6.0m Lewiston, ID/Clarkston Wa Levee

Having missed an early morning running date with a friend, I pushed my little guy in the stroller on the same route we would have run together.  The morning heat was starting to creep up and I was pushing my litle guy in the stroller so I chose to walk the Lewiston/Clarkston levee loop across the bridges. I didn't take any tunes, but instead chose to stroll down memory lane.

I was in town for my high school reunion (year intentionally omitted) and I found myself smiling and laughing out loud as I walked along remembering memories I hadn't thought of for many, many years.  It was a fun way to remember the good times.

Thursday, August 4, 2011

1.0 Manure Mile

Dressed in my black secret stealth clothes, I went out to run another manure mile in the pasture. I waited until my very chatty and nosy neighbor had gone in her house for the night. A repeat of last night's scenario left me no other option but to run "lines" again alternating from jogging to the middle fence and sprinting back to the front fence. I was already in the negative for time since the sun had just set, but I was able to get a mile in before I couldn't see the piles to avoid anymore. The air was thick with smoke from fires somewhere and my lungs didn't like it.  That's when I called it quits.

It was a very short run and 10:12 later I had logged a mile more than when I started.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

2.0m Bad High School Flash Back

I felt like I was back in high school running lines. It wasn't a good flashback and my body isn't as spry as it once was.  I had 15 minutes of daylight and my husband wasn't home, so I had to get creative or I wasn't getting any miles in today. I wasn't going to leave the kids and had to go out and feed the horses anyway, so I just started doing laps around the pasture. I dressed in all black as to not draw anymore attention to myself.  I ran Ipodless (is that even a word?) so I could hear the horses coming if they decided to get frisky and join me running. I ran laps from the front fence to middle fence and back alternating walking out and sprinting back. I would have done more, but I could no longer see the random rocks and manure piles in the dark. It was a good obstacle course, to say the least.  I got in 22:58 minutes at an average pace of 11:29.