Personal

Seattle Bound.

What a busy last two weeks.  My life has literally gone from 0 to 1000 in the last month.  A month ago (I guess right before the Shamrock half marathon) I did not have much to do.  I was beginning a job but not working every day.  I was relaxing, making sure things were clean at the house etc.  After Shamrock, it seems my life is constantly on the move.  I can’t say I thrive on being always on the go, but I don’t mind it either.  It’s just a big change.

With work and my commute, I’m away about 45 hours of the week right now.  (That far beats the few hours a week I was away the months before working). 

Anyways long story short, I’m once again in a transition mode.  I am transitioning to having a job again and now transitioning into wedding planning.  In my little free time, I find myself reading wedding planner blogs versus healthy living blogs…I’m still here though.  I can truly say I am in a very good spot in my life.  Although I’ve been limited on the internet (sorry twitter, instagram, facebook and blogging) I am still enjoying reading blogs and chatting with people on various medias. I’ve just gone from sending 100+ tweets daily to 15.

That being said a few months ago my parents surprised me with a plane ticket to Seattle.  My oldest brother Doug and his wife live out there.  My parents were going to visit and then surprised me with a plane ticket to go as well.  This all happened before I began work, but luckily I was able to get off to go!  It couldn’t have come at a better time because lord knows I need to talk with my mom and dad (as well as my sister in law) about how to plan a wedding.

So from now until next Monday I will be hanging out in Seattle.  I’ll be visiting my brother and his wife Lindsay as well as their beautiful child (and my neice).  I’ll be exploring Seattle, possibly finding a 5k or 10k to update my athlinks with a new state and finally (hopefully) visiting the Oiselle HQ!

It’s going to be a great time and I could not be more excited for this adventure.  I might even have some good blogging content afterwords!

Questions for you:

Have you ever been to Seattle?  Any recommendations?

When was the last time you took a vacation?

 

NYC training cycle, Running

1 Week to Go (NYCM) 54 miles

This week in workouts was a combination of taper and I’m so busy I don’t have time or energy to workout.  There I said it.  It’s been fairly good that my week of taper has coincided with moving, looking at houses, traveling, being at home, being ultra busy and every other excuse I can think of.  As I said before I have absolutely no idea what a good running taper is.  I’ve researched and looked at various articles but it’s my first taper for a running race. (swimming I just followed a coaches plan). If this plan doesn’t work, it doesn’t and I know next time I run a marathon not to do this.  I know a lot of things not to do next time training for a marathon but that is a post all to itself.

Monday: 12.23 miles Charlotte, NC. 
Tuesday: Cross train (elliptical)
Wednesday: 11.12 miles home, fast finish (8:25 overall pace)
Thursday: Off
Friday: 7.22 progressive run
Saturday Wicked 10k (39:28) (total 11 miles)
Sunday 12.75 miles
Total: 54 miles

Thoughts:

As most articles suggested, the second week out is the time to reduce mileage by around 20-25%.  I’ve gone 102 miles-80 miles-54 miles.  So that is falling about into that. (a little more actually). My legs honestly did not feel as good as I was hoping with the cut of mileage.  Hopefully they will continue to feel better.

The Wicked 10k on Saturday went extremely well.  I’ll have a recap tomorrow but the weather and course made it for a fast race.  I was only 8 seconds from my PR and with no speed work I should be happy.  Am I happy?  I’m pretty happy but alas a 10k PR would have been nice too, especially since I have reduced my mileage.

My last high effort run yesterday went according to the plan.  The goal was to start off easier (8:30 pace) progress and hold for a few miles at goal marathon pace (7:15) then push the envelope a little more and drop down to 7:00 minute pace. Even with not wearing racing flats, I was able to do this so it was certainly motivating.

When I had bad tapers with swimming, I never felt good and found myself feeling sluggish at the start of the race.  (I swam the 1000m and mile in college).  As much as I tried to swim fast, I just felt like I had no turnover or speed.  Hopefully that isn’t the case here.

Next week I’m cutting my miles again with a few miles spread out at marathon pace.  Nothing left to do but continue to rest and mentally prepare for the race.  As I’ve said throughout this training cycle my primary goal for this marathon is to finish.  Would I love to run a 3:10?  Yes, of course, however with waiting around a cold start for 3 hours as well as running a very overcrowded race it’s very tough to say what will happen.  I know if I cross the finish line as happy as when I start, I will be happy.

Questions for you:

What was your first marathon goal?

What is your most confidence boosting workout? 

Running

The Travelers Miles (80)

This week I’ve essentially been on the road and trying to continue my training.  As you may or may not know, I’m headed back to Virginia (home) and hope to get back tomorrow night.  Though if I don’t,  no big deal as I don’t have a time crunch to actually get back there.  That’s why we have spent the last week on the road and just taking things as they come.  We make awful time, stop at multiple places along the way and run a lot.  I fully enjoy it.  It’s nice to not have any pressure to get back quickly.

Monday: Home OFF: Recovery from last weeks 100 mile week…I didn’t move from the couch for about 8 hours besides to eat and use the rest room.  That is not an exaggeration. I should have been packing to move but didn’t even have the energy for that.
Tuesday: Home 13.2 miles untimed
Wednesday: Houston, Tx 12.63 miles untimed
Thursday: Louisiana 13.1 miles untimed
Friday: Pensacola, Fl 13.67 miles (8:30 with 2 miles 7:30)
Saturday: Atlanta Haunted Hustle XC 5k (19:15) total: 11 miles
Sunday: Charlotte 16 miles progression (8:04 overall pace)
Total: 80 miles

Thoughts:

The first three days were spent solely not caring about pace and just getting through the miles.  I took Monday off because I needed to recover.  I honestly felt like if I didn’t take Monday off I would have done damage to my body.  I also don’t think I could have actually run as I was so exhausted.  I enjoy rest days (when they come because they are needed) and having easy days. I fully enjoyed bonding with the couch (and avoiding packing) all day long.

The rest of the week was spent just getting in the miles.  I knew my body was going to be tired.  I had no incline to push the pace, the goal of this week was to get high mileage while traveling and no injure myself.   Friday, I added some quicker miles to prepare me for my first 5k in close to 3 months.

The race in Atlanta was about how I expected it to be.  It was a cross country 5k and I haven’t run anything in the low 6 minute pace since my arm broke in August.  I haven’t run a cross country race since early June either.  (I love cross country though!).  It was nice to shock my body into it and after driving 1200 miles and not being rested (or tapered) it was about how I thought.  I knew it wasn’t going to be a PR but still a great time.

My long run went perfectly.  It was in a cross country park in Charlotte and the weather was beautiful.  I started around an 8:30 pace and then progressed to a 7:30.

Next week/Taper Thoughts:

I’ve never fully tapered for a half marathon and never run a full marathon before.  When tapering for swimming championships I had a mix of having the best race of the season post taper as well as having slower races then in the season.  I plan to slowly cut down my miles and hopefully my legs will feel fresh for the race.  I don’t know how this taper will go but I have my life to run marathons.  If this isn’t the best race ever then I can train and try new things next year.  Though my goal has been 3:10 this entire process, finishing a first marathon is truly an accomplishment in itself.

Questions for you:

Do you do deal well with taper?

Are you a good traveler?

I’m not, I’m a really high maintenance traveler.  I always need to stop and use the rest room, am hungry, thirsty and everywhere in between.  I don’t know of anyone who enjoys traveling with me.

Running, Training

NYCM Peak Week 1 (102 miles)

I cannot believe we are three weeks out from the marathon and I have finished peak week number 1 (out of 2).   I had a great week and focused on quality and recovering.  I continued to take my baths, foam roll and keep my legs feeling as good as they could after running that amount of miles.

Monday: 12.72 miles (8:22 pace)
Tuesday: 12.71 miles (8:08 pace) last 2 miles <7:30
Wednesday: 13.21 miles (8:37) recovery, easy
Thursday 15.7 miles mid week long run
Friday: 13.1 miles untimed but perfect half
PM: Core work
Saturday: 13.5 miles untimed
Sunday 20.5 miles (last 7 at sub 8 min) overall pace 8:02.
Total: 102 miles

Training thoughts:

Wow my first 100 mile week.  My first and possibly only 100 mile week.  As I type that out, I am honestly in shock with it myself.  This was a perfect training week as far as mileage goes.  I felt great when I should and I felt tired and sluggish when I should.  I recovered well and did exactly what I was supposed to.  It was honestly my best week of the cycle.

I wanted to get my faster runs done in the beginning of the week because I knew it would be a lot easier.  As far as any niggles or injuries I had none.  Someone asked about my knee the other day and I’m happy to report I have felt no pain or twinges in the last two week.  (Knock on wood) I’m still injury free.  It was a little hard for me this week going from running 6 days a week to 7 (something I haven’t done in a while) but I know that is what I needed to do in my two peak weeks.

My shift and focus for training has gone from speed week to just huge amounts of miles.  Hoarding all the miles is what I’ve done best this week I suppose.  Something I keep in mind with these huge mileage weeks is that in another week I’ll begin tapering and I honestly can’t wait.  I know a lot of people hate taper or are grouchy during taper but I like nothing more than to relax and recover.  I’ll be busy looking at houses and enjoying family time so it really will be nice not to worry a lot about high mileage.  It all balances out between peak weeks and taper weeks.

My goal for New York is still to hopefully come in around 3:10.  My primary goal remains finishing and finishing happy and injury free but I would be absolutely ecstatic with a 3:10 finishing time as well.

So that is that.  My best and most productive week is done with.  Knock on wood, I’m still injury free and I feel ready.

Questions for you:

What has been your best week of workouts ever?

What is your favorite workout ever? 

 

Running

Running for a Team

Putting on the Oiselle team singlet for the first time last week made me realize I was part of something bigger.  After a year away from my college team and college sports I had began to miss the general team aspect of running.  Though I am a member of the Tidewater Striders down in VA Beach, I’ve spent (unwillingly only 3 months in the last year actually in VA).

Tidewater Striders Singlet :-)
Tidewater Striders Singlet 🙂

As most endurance sports are running is one of the most individualized sports out there.  Only you can determine how fast you will cross the finish line.  You can have a coach or someone pushing you but nobody controls your legs except for you.

That being said I have missed being a part of something bigger than myself.  I’ve missed the team atmosphere.  I’ve missed lining up with my college team in a box ready to start a race.  I’ve missed prerace speeches.  Every aspect of collegiate and team running I have missed.  Not that every Oiselle teammate could run every race together (I know that I tend to run far more races then the average runner…) but I do know that if I ever see another teammate I can always count of them.

oiselle

As someone who has been part of a team (with swimming or running), it is finally great to be part of something greater than myself.  As I said running is one of the most individualized sports there is.  You run the race by yourself.  Only you can determine how fast you will run on a given day.  You can have people pace you, give you advice, coach, ect. But when the clock starts it’s you and you alone.

crosscountrystart
Can you pick me out? ha.

But then zoom out of the scope of a road race, cross country race or any other sort of race.  Yes, you are running alone but you are running in a community.  You are with people also running alone but also running together.  Runners are some of the most supportive people both on and off the course.

During the off season of cross country in college (ie: when I was not injured) and after college, I tended to do a lot more road races than the average person.  If I lived in an area that had more races then I would still do that.   I don’t race often because I expect to PR every time I race, I race because I love the running community.  In VA, I loved to see and talk to my friends every weekend.  Similar to a giant social gathering in college, for me running road races allowed me to catch up with people throughout the week that lived 45 minutes away.

crosscountry
Wow was this a while ago.

Since I don’t do a lot of speed work and save money in other areas of my life, racing every weekend is something I love to do.  I enjoy that running is such an individualized yet social community.  Whether you are on a team (YAY Osielle) or you are not, you are still apart of great community.

So after putting on the Oiselle singlet last weekend and realizing that I was no longer just running by myself, I have come to realize just how much I enjoy the team aspect of running.

Questions for you:

Do you run for a team?

What is your favorite race outfit?