Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Saturdays run will be very interesting

Well I didn't even go to work today. I woke up this morning if full flu like mode. I've been sleeping most of the day and am finally starting to feel ache free and more human. So obviously I did not do my run this evening.

On Saturday the group will make our first attempt at 18 miles for this season. 18 miles last season was when I really started to lose my confidence in completing the marathon. I really struggled. I'll be concentrating this week on fuleing and pacing better. I'll also be looking out for newbies who may need encouragement. That will help keep me distratced too. A good day Saturday will be to finish in good spirits.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Tuesday back at the gym

I still feel yukky but I was determined to get some exercise today. So I went to the gym. As I drove over I almost turned around and drove back. But I stuck it out and I'm glad I did. I was fully prepared to stop if it wasn't going well.

I completed my usual routine on the resistance machines and then moved to the elliptical. I kept the level on that on the low side. My goal was to work up a bit of a sweat without overdoing it so that I'd crash when I got home. I think I accomplished that.

One day at a time. I will try to run outside tomorrow.

Sunday, September 27, 2009


I thought it was allergies, the stuffy head, sore throat, earache..... I was too tired to do anything every night. But when I woke up this morning with achy neck and shoulders and as that moved over other parts of me during the day it is obvious that there is more going on than just allergies. *sigh*. Here's hoping I can shake this by the end of tomorrow and get back on track Tuesday.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Walking on Monday, Running on Tuesday

Monday was a scheduled day off. Instead I walked about 4 miles with one of my Realtor friends in Harrisburg. She can't run right now due to some back and hamstring issues so we enjoyed a walk across the walking bridge to City Island around the Island back over the bridge and then along the river trail for a bit.

Today (Tuesday) I met two other Realtor friends at 6:15 for a 5 mile run along the trail. The really nice thing about this was that my ankle did not twinge even once before during or after the run. In fact, all day, despite being in heels I felt not discomfort at all. I really hope this is a long term thing!

Been debating what to do the next couple of days but then I saw the weather forecast so I'll stick to the plan which calls for 2 gym days in a row.

Monday, September 21, 2009

Philadelphia Distance Run

On Sunday I ran the Philadelphia Distance Run in 2 hours, 28 minutes and 6 seconds. Given that my goal run right now is the Goofy Challenge (really two runs) I was happy with the time. I was also pleased with the way my hydration and fuel strategy seemed to work. I wish I had done better with pacing and that I had eliminated the walk over the Falls Bridge.
I had hoped to pace the first 5 miles at more than 11 but less than 12 miles per hour. Then see if I could pick up the pace slightly in the next 5 miles and finish the last 5 at the quickest pace. According to my chip times my pace for the first 5k was 10:29 and my overall pace was 11:18. I went out too fast and got slower. I have to work on this. I do not use a running watch and maybe the only way I will be able to control this is to get one.

I felt good at the end despite this 'failure' despite having run the 9 miles the day before. So mentally I like i'm making progress toward Goofy.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

9 miles and the expo

I adjusted my plan for 10 miles today so I wouldn't keep anyone waiting. Here's what happened. About 12 of us showed up for the regular group run today. Most of the running group are in the Distance Run tomorrow and took the day off. Of those that showed up this morning, only 3 were not running tomorrow. They set out to do the full 10. The rest planned to do 5. As the three increased the distance between me and them I decided to turn around at 4.5 so that, even if they passed me on the way back (they didn't) I wouldn't keep anyone waiting especially since they would have returned so much earlier. It was a gorgeous day for running; just a bit cool at the beginning. I will have to bring my headband tomorrow to keep my ears warm. I was uncomfortable the first 2 miles and tomorrow it may be a bit cooler still.

So after I drove home for a quick shower and then off the to the train station to head into town for the expo which seemed smaller than last year; less vendors. The shirt is nice. Not as nice as last year's marathon shirt - it will be hard to beat that for a while - but it is a tech shirt rather than a t shirt like last year. I will still wear my Phillyfit shirt for the run but it's nice to have another running shirt.

I was able to get another pair of sneakers and stock up on gus all for less than I could get the same sneakers at the local running store. I also found an extra pouch for my belt for about $5. I made the mistake of not eating lunch before going down so I had to stop at Cinnabon on the way to the train going home. I could only eat half of it though.

Looking forward to tomorrow.

Friday, September 18, 2009

So on Thursday I spent an hour at the gym. 30 miutes on weights and 30 minutes on the bike. The gym is still a strange activity for me. I still have to force myself or talk myself into going but I always feel good when I'm done.

Today is a rest day. Tomorrow I will meet with USAFIT-Philly. On Sunday, I'm running in the Philadelphia Distance Run (half marathon). I'd like to run the 10 miles with the red group at Philly Fit anyway to keep up with my back to back runs. It may mean that my run at the PDR will not be as fast or as good as it could be if I rested tomorrow. I really don't know that for sure though. I guess this will be a good way to find out. I'm certain I can finish 10 on Saturday and 13 on Sunday as long as I don't get too caught up in the race atmosphere on Sunday and go out to fast. I'll let you know.

To keep me honest I'll tell you now that my bib number for Sunday is 14298.

Keep smiling, keep moving! :)

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

It's not about speed...

It's about endurance, sticking it out and finishing. This is my new mantra.

Today I ran a great 5 mile loop through Media. It is a modified version of the five mile race course. I cut out Street and run on Baker Street instead. This cuts out the traffic, people and food smells on State. By running to and from the house to the loop I still get in five miles. The weather is like June out there now. A perfect evening for running. A couple passed me on Olive commenting, "We won't have many more of these!".

The ankle was still oddly better while running - go figure. The toes on my left foot are doing some weird stuff. Not toenails, toes. It's hard to describe. Not really a blister although possibly a blood blister but it doesn't hurt like that. I'll keep an eye on that.

I noticed an odd thing about parking spaces as I ran today. All the spaces between Front and Second on Olive were empty of cars making it easier to spot this. Every space had the same wear marks just to the outside of the space where the drive would get in and out of the car. A distinctive wear spot as if a good snow fall will create a pothole there. The street seems to be able to handle cars but not people. Interesting. Hey! You have to think about something when you're running.....

Sunday, September 13, 2009

7 miles more... 22 back to back for the weekend

I won't sugar coat it; physically this one hurt! Mentally I'm on over the top.

I woke up with soreness in my right ankle still. This is unusual. Typically after a good night rest with at least 6 hours of uninterrupted elevation the ankle is good to go in the am. This morning I hadn't even stepped on it and I could feel it. My half sleep self said bag the run today. My cheapskate self (the one that knows I've invested significantly in Goofy with race fees and airfare) said there has to be a way. I had planned a zig zag run through Media. The soreness left me thinking I should stick closer to home just in case. So I changed it to 5 times around the neighborhood. Each trip around is 1.4 miles. Boring, yes, but if the ankle really started bothering me I did not want to have to walk to far to get back to home.

So I got out of bed and walked around to make the bed. The soreness did not go away :( . So cheapskate brain said "Get into your running clothes now, before breakfast" I did. Breakfast was water and a peanut better chewy granola bar. I put on sneakers, and filled my water bottle. I put my water bottle on the front porch and headed for the first lap. Strange thing happened. Within 2 blocks I had no soreness.

Theory: I need to keep more blood moving to this ankle more regularly. More massaging and icing after a long run.
Fact: I have to work on strenthening the muscles around it too. I already knew this but haven't been paying attention.

I finished all 7 miles. I ran two loops, went to my porch for water and stretching and then did two more loops in the opposite direction to try to ward off the boredom. After two more loops I went for more water and stretching and finished the last loop. I felt a slight twinge in the ankle on the last loop but nothing to stop me. I massaged it and iced it (in reverse order) then put the compression brace on it to go into town for the street fair to help the Lions Club sell hot dogs for a few hours.

My quads are sore. They were sore the entire run and when I got home I put the shower on as cold as I could stand it on my legs top to bottom, front and back for a few minutes.

Today was about working through all that and finshing. I feel great about that.

Tomorrow is a scheduled day off. But I know that I will not be able to do my Wednesday run. I have not mastered getting up before work and after work I have way too much to do and won't even be home until late. So I will move my Tuesday gym workout to Monday, run on Tuesday, take Wednesday off and back to the gym on Thursday. However, tomorrow's gym workout will have no leg work; upper body only.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Yup 15 miles in the rain

Which is actually not so bad. It was a fine misty rain and the temperature was about 60 so really it was ok. I woke up still feeling good about it in advance and the jet lag that had been dogging me during the week seemed to have passed over as well.

So up at 5:30 with the usual pre-run meal; 1/2 raisin bagel with peanut butter, banana and water. Filled up my water bottles; 2 with water, 2 with decaf green tea. Packed GU and electrolyte caps in my pouch and off I went to meet the group at Valley Forge.

The plan to cover the distance was once aroung the loop (5.5), then across the bridge to betzwood, then 2 miles in one direction and back, then 2.5 in the other direction and back and over the bridge again. Over the bridge and back is about 1.5. I finished in three ours which is a very respectable time for me on a long run. A gu at mile 4 and mile 8, a salt capsule at 5 and 10, three one minute walk breaks each followed by stretches before resuming the run.

I made one almost fatal error. After the second walk/stretch I decided to run harder to catch up with two of the group I had been running with. Big mistake. Running hard is fine at the end of a long run but not 2/3 of the way through. I think that was the reason I needed a third break. BUT I did finish and still ran hard on the home stretch. My legs were pretty wobbly though.

My ankle is a bit achy and again that's my fault. Usually after long run i'll ice it and have Dave work it around for me. I didn't do this in my haste to change and get out the door to visit my daughter. Next time I'll take the time. It would have only meant another half hour before leaving.

After talking to some of the group after the run, it seems a lot of us were on some kind of out of mind experience when choosing our Distance Run predicted finish time. Few seem confident about making the time. Of coure there are some that always say that. For me though.. that isn't the case. Honest. Last year I finished 2:25 and change. Well I predicted 2:17 and change for this year. And I know the reason too. I registered shortly after the Broad Street Run which was a fantastic run for me and I guess I was figuring that if I kept at it I could improve that much on the PDR.

To put a more realistic spin on it, I'll be very happy to best my time from last year by any amount and still happy to simply finish. I will be running with the group on Saturday the day before to continue my preparation for back to back running for Goofy. They plan 10 miles. I haven't decided if I will go the whole 10 or not. I'd like to and then to be able to finish the PDR the next day in good form would be considered a success. In a perfect world.....

Friday, September 11, 2009

15 mile long run tomrrow

Well it's still raining and it sounds like it might still be rainy and cool for our long run tomorrow. Strangely enough I'm looking foward to it. I've felt so good on the days I did go out this week that I'm feeling really positive about the run. I have to be careful not to go too excited and go out too fast. I have to remember that my goal now is Goofy and running strong is more important than running for time. Running for time really never was my focus but it is even more different now. I want to finish both races for Goofy feeling good, not depleted like I was after the Philly Marathon.

So tomorrow is 15 miles and next week a lot of us will be running the Philly Distance Run. Hard to belive it's here already. I received my confirmation in email and my corral # is 14. I looked at the prediction time I must have sent it with my registration and I have to say... WHAT WAS I TIHNKING? LOL

Thursday, September 10, 2009

5 miles in the rain

On Wednesday I ran 5 miles around Media in a light rain. I'm pleased that I felt strong the entire way. I think I recommend a vacation to everyone. I'm sure the enormous amount of walking we did helped avoid a serious loss of fitness level but I was expecting much more struggle upon my return. Having said that today I pooped out. The plan was a gym visit but I'm too pooped to even turn the car on.

Monday, September 7, 2009

Happy Labor Day! I'm happy to say I managed 10 miles with little laboring! :) I headed out to Valley Forge and ran over the bridge from the Visitors Center to the River Trail, ran the trail and made up the difference in mileage on the Schyukill River Trail. I felt good and strong. My ankle is bothering me a bit right now but Dave massaged it and I have it compressed and elevated. I ran in my old shoes and I really think they are done.

It's off to the gym tomorrow.

Sunday, September 6, 2009

Return from vacation - Day 1

Well after two weeks off I'm back to training. I did a lot of walking on vacation but only one very short run.

I ran for 5 miles in the first hour then decided to finish my workout for time not distance. I determined that a total of two hours was my goal for today. So I went to Cherry Street Field to run on the grass. I spent the final hour running laps around the entire field; doing sprint-jog-walk intervals around the soccer field. I finished the workout walking but I did manage to meet my goal of two hours. Yay me!

Tomorrow I hope to do 10 miles running.