Thursday, July 26, 2007
Monday, July 23, 2007
I was tagged by Miss Petite America as a Rockin Girl Blogger (awwww!) and now I shall tag these lovely ladies whose blogs I obsess over, I mean, read.
Maritza, of course, because she's a sweeheart and a devoted runner and even has a cooking-show thing going on on her blog right now. Can't beat that!
JKRunning if she hasn't been tagged already. She is very smart and inspiring.
Michele is a super rockin' triathlete blogger.
Jessica has a great website for her trail running group in Southern California- I need to get down there and meet her!
GB (aka Silly Lillie) is an incredible runner who has run several of the same races as me (boston and CIM) and I hope to meet her someday too!
Ladies, you all rock. :)
I did my first ever "real" bike ride last weekend, followed by my first ever transition run! Here are the stats:
Saturday's bike: 16.0 miles/1:03:49/15 MPH average pace
followed immediately by:
First of all, that bike ride was tough! My bum was on fire, and every other muscle was working hard too. But mostly, my bum. :D Not saddle-sore (I have proper bike shorts and was really pretty comfy) but muscle-burn. Youch! We kept a good cadence and I only fell behind Zach a couple of times, otherwise I kept a good pace. I wore my Garmin so I have good data on the ride- I don't think we had any mile slower than 14 mph average, and our best mile was over 17 mph! This was really encouraging for our first real ride. Somewhat humbling was the transition run...
We hopped off our bikes and just propped them against the car, took a swig of water, and jogged around the parking lot. Weird!! My legs were tight and a little numb-feeling (not actually numb, just weird-feeling) but running actually felt ok! Zach only jogged a minute or two then decided that was enough for our first excursion, but I ran back and forth for a total of one mile. It was weird. As the tightness/numbness went away, I got a little calf cramp, which luckily didn't stick around. I slowly re-gained feeling and control of my legs, and running felt fine. I did feel like I was a few miles into a run, rather than only a few minutes, so that was odd. It was fun though, and I can see that transition runs will be very valuable for training!
The next day my lower back was a little sore, and my neck too. That bike position takes some getting used to.
So a pretty mild week overall:
TOTAL miles run: 4 (how cute!), biked 25 (sweet!), total yards swam: 1120 (just one day last week- open water).
So that was kind of a warm-up to our real training, which starts this week. I managed to come up with a training schedule that works for both Zach and I - please give me your feed back on this!
Monday: pm: Run 4-6 (speedwork, hills, etc)
Tuesday: am: swim 500-1000 m
pm: bike ride and weight training
Wednesday: pm: Run 6-8 (Group)
Thursday: am: swim 500-1000 m
pm: bike ride and weight training
Friday: am: longer run 8+
Saturday: longer bike ride (15+) with transition run (1-3)
Sunday: longer swim or Open Water Swim
So that is 3x swimming, 3x cycling, and 4x running if you count the brick. I will be doing the swims in the morning by myself (Zach will do his swim Friday evening), and I'll be running solo on Friday mornings too. I know bike is my weakness, and I love to swim and obviously run, so I think I have a good balance of the three. I don't plan on any rest days but will take them as needed. Zach and I will work together to come up with specific workouts each week but this will be the general plan for the next 10 weeks. Should be interesting.
Finally, I have to mention that I did finish the final book in the Harry Potter series this weekend. :) It was very, very good. I want everyone to go read it now so we can discuss. Just kidding, but not really!
Friday, July 20, 2007
Friday 3.0 miles/25:04/8:21 average pace
Maritza looking strong:
Zach running to the finish line:
Early on I'm feeling great:
I managed a smile, but I'm tired here:
Tuesday, July 17, 2007
At just a few minutes past 7:15 we were off! The course is generally flat with some rolling hills. The scenery is all rural wine country. Gorgeous. There were virtually no spectators, but I was feeling the energy of the other runners and had no problem getting into a groove. I started off very strong:
mile 3: 7:49 (ave)
mile 4: 8:04
mile 5: 7:56
mile 10: 8:08
Maritza charged in not far behind, we were waiting and gave her a roaring cheer as she passed (and I got a high-five!) and went and found her at the finish line. She did great!! GO Maritza!! She hadn't done many long training runs due to knee/shin issues and cranked out this half marathon on pure will. Not too shabby! Girl's got endurance.
We picked up our souvenir wine glasses and sampled some local wine, then got lunch at a local bakery. It was a long drive home, we were all totally beat! I'm so proud of Maritza and Zach, and of myself. What a team. :) Thanks for reading!
Here is Zach's First Race Report!
The race began at a steady uphill walk as the crowd approached the start line. I was alone at the start of a long run for the first time ever; Jen had started working her way up in the pack and I watched her as she jockeyed for position about 150 feet ahead of me. I crossed the start line, started the timer on my watch, took a deep breath, and started off on my first half Marathon. As I crested the hill at the start I saw the crowd ahead of me cruising downhill for the first half mile or so of the course. As I watched the different colored shirts, hats, shorts, and bandannas moving down the road it made me think of gasoline spreading out on a puddle of water (you know what I am talking about if you have ever seen it). My first mile came in at 8:45; I was on pace and felt good – 12 more miles like this and I would be good to go. Fast forward to mile 4; my pace had decreased and now I was hovering right around an 8:00 mile. I watched my next two miles come in around 8:00 and knew I was running a bit fast but figured it was a race and I was feeling good; when I hit my lap and noticed I had just done a 7:40 mile I knew I had to make myself slow down. My next mile came in at around 8:21 and there was a soreness creeping up through my hamstrings but now I only had five miles to go so I told myself to suck it up and keep on moving. When I got to the 10 mile marker I knew that a much deserved walking break was coming my way. I waited until about 45 seconds into the mile then pulled out my last two cliff blocks, threw them in my mouth (two eaten at miles 4 and 7 as well), then washed them down with a big drink of water. I now had about 10 seconds left in my allotted 30 second water break so I stretched my arms and shoulders before taking off again. I now knew that there was only a 5k between me and the finish line and I knew I could make it. I had expected to slow down quite a bit but miles 11 and 12 came in at 8:31 and 8:35; my mind was saying sweet while my legs were saying you have got to be kidding me, we did that?!!. I decided that a 15 second walking break was in the cards at the start of mile 13 which gave me time to get another big drink of water and prepare myself for the last mile. As I started running again I thought holy crap this is going to be tough but suddenly I realized I was running the last mile of my first half marathon!! I knew I had to stop whining about the pain and bask in what I was about to accomplish. I relaxed a bit and had a smile on my face as I pushed through the last mile. Once I passed the 13 mile market I picked up the pace as much as I could and headed toward the finish line. The crowd was cheering, I was feeling good, and best of all I saw Jen as I crossed the finish line! 1:47:48, an average pace of 8:14, some pain, some pleasure, some laughing, some cursing, but all in all it was a great experience and I am looking forward to my next race!!
Saturday, July 14, 2007
Friday 5.0 miles/45:14/9:04 average pace
Easy run before work, I made a point to not even look at my watch and just run at a relaxed pace. It was nice and cool out, only about 60. That will hopefully be the case tomorrow morning for the race (plus, God willing, some fog!).
SO, my goals for the Wine Country Half Marathon!
A Goal: PR (sub 1:44:54) I think I can beat my PR by over a minute, which will require me to run an average pace of about 7:55. Although beating my PR by even a second would bring me great joy also. That's anything under an 8:00 pace.
B Goal: Come in near by PR (like 1:47 or better- under 8:10 pace).
C Goal: Run my best and finish strong (under 1:50 is certainly doable).
Pie in the sky/secret dream goal: Huge PR -let's say sub 1:43 (7:52 pace).
Wheels fall off/not my day backup goal: suck it up and finish
I am feeling really confident and excited for the race! It is going to be really beautiful course and my two best friends will be out there running it too- what more could I ask for. Can't wait to post my race report, plus of course we'll hear about Zach's day too- his first long distance road race! I'll have some pictures too, although not many since my photographer will be busy running. :)
Thanks for the well wishes everyone as always!
Thursday, July 12, 2007
Not only was it hot, but that paved path works its way UP into that canyon. So hot and hilly. Oh, and there were warnings all around about High Mountain Lion Danger! Factor in the informative signs and pictures of tarantulas and venemous snakes, and I was in for an adventure.
I had a water bottle and knowlege of where to refill, I was sunscreened up and ready to go. I huffed and puffed for 2 and a half miles up that road, seeing fewer and fewer people as I climbed. I originally planned to run to the end of the trail at 3.7 miles, but I was ready to throw in the towel at 2.5. I was standing in the shade, chugging my water, when I fellow runner came up behind me. At the last second, instead of just saying hello, I asked "Is it ok if I run along with you?" She said Sure, come on! So we started up the hill together. She was a local Tucson girl about my age and she runs this canyon often. So I shook off my worries and enjoyed her company. We ran to the 3 mile point, refilled our waters, and headed back down the hills. Now that was fun!! I really enjoyed chatting with her and flying down those hills. We were doing about 8:30 pace until the last mile, which flattens out and even has a final hill, but we finished strong. I was so grateful to meet her- I wouldn't have even done 6 miles, and I also would have done a lot of walking and whining. Just goes to show that runners (and other athletes!) are such kind and helpful people. Thanks Tucson runner girl!! :)
Oh, and finally an update on the 5k results!
I finished in 4th place in my AG out of 49 girls age 25-29. Nice! (but no shiny medal. Poop!) I was 22nd woman overall out of 430.
The surprise of the day is that Zach is 38 years old! Ha ha!! Well that's what the results say. That put him in 16th place in that AG, but once the results get corrected (and I get my 28 year old husband back) he got 3rd place in his AG!!!! GO ZACH!!! Only 16 guys in that AG but he smoked most of them. Way to go babe! He was 70th man out of 325. I'm so proud- his first AG medal!!
Sunday, July 08, 2007
Thursday, July 05, 2007
Monday 5.0 miles/43:34/8:43 average pace
Easy run in the heat. It was really only in the high 80's but it has gotten much hotter in the last few days, up to 104 yesterday!
Tuesday 1500 meters swimming in 33:37.
Yes, that's right, I got a watch. (ok, Zach got a new watch and I got his old one) Whoo hoo! Look at me with my minutes and seconds. :P Nice long swim and felt comfortable.
Then... this week's MAIN EVENT:
The Run San Ramon 5k Race!
Well, I admit I was anxious, even though it wasn't a goal race at all. Despite all my understanding of mental training- visualization, positive thinking, etc.. and I usually am very good about this stuff, but I just can't help but psych myself out sometimes. I honestly didn't think there was any way I'd come even close to my PR of 22:08. Who is that fast runner, I wondered! Plus I also admit I was worried Zach would beat me, and then I felt guilty about worrying about that. Ugh! In summary, I was not confident.
But I did give myself a little pep talk before bed, and I slept really good. I woke up feeling energized and excited! I wasn't really confident, but I wasn't down on myself either. I knew I'd try my best, and Zach would too, and it would be fun. I was ready to race!
We drove down and registered before the crowds got there, about 7:15. Then we did a 1.5 mile warm up jog around the park as more people started arriving. It was already pretty warm, about 70 degrees at 8:00. Finally, after the standard delay, we were off!
I went out fast, too fast actually, as I was swept up in the fast pace of the crowd. Felt great for about a quarter of a mile, ha ha. After that it became more and more difficult to maintain a fast pace. First mile: a smokin' fast 6:58!
The course is just a big loop around this big park and the surrounding office park. So we made a couple of turns, I was tucking behind random people trying to get some pace help from them without their knowing it. I slowed down a little, which was inevitable, but kept on running. Second mile 7:28
Now I'm really panting, and my legs are heavy! We're out in the sun again too and man I want this to be over. About mile 2.5 I am trying to find a pace buddy to help me along, when I hear a loud throat-clearing behind me. I turn around and who do I see but my surprisingly speedy husband! Drafting off me this whole time without my knowing it! Ha ha!! My brow furrows and I laugh simultaneously. Before I can stop myself I yell at him " YOU F#%&-ER! What are you doing?!" Ha ha. He pants "Just trying to hang in there." Pretty cool. Now I am NOT letting him beat me, after trailing my like a sucker this whole time. I didn't realize it at the time, but he told me later- I sped up right away. How - I do not know. Competitive nature I guess!! We blow by the mile 3 marker with a 7:12 split, and sprint to the finish.
Last .1 miles: 45 seconds.
My finish time: 22:25!
Zach's finish time: 22:27!!
What a race! I was soooo pumped that I came so close to my PR, I did great! I was sooooooo impressed and proud of Zach for hanging in there, and he saved himself a painful existence by not passing me at the end (he insists he couldn't have if he wanted to, which I want to believe). We might have even got a picture together from the official race photographers. How cool! I know I am competitive with him, but I don't think there's anything wrong with it. We spent the whole day telling each other how awesome the other did, and how proud we are of each other. I had a fantastic time at this race, and I'm so grateful for my lifelong running buddy. :)
Well we stuck around and ate Popsicles and cheered on other runners for a good half hour. I had one lady who was nearing the finish offer me 100 dollars for my Popsicle. :D Hilarious. We left before results were posted, and they are not online yet, but I'll update when I see them.
We had a great rest of the holiday. I jumped in the pool when we got back to the apartment (did I mention it was 104 degrees??) and then later we rode our bikes up to watch the fireworks in San Ramon- got about 8 miles in (half in the pitch dark!). So I ended up doing a triathlon yesterday! ha ha.
Got up this morning and went to the pool. I swam 1000 meters in 22:34.
Hope everyone had a great 4th!
Monday, July 02, 2007
Friday 6.0 miles/54:xx/9:xx average pace
Easy run in the morning on Friday, felt really good.
Saturday 15.0 miles/2:12:08/8:49 average pace
Zach and I went for a long run looping through Golden Gate Park, with couple hilly miles on the streets of the city, then up the big hill past the Cliff House. Zach finished at 12.5 miles and I continued out and back on a path along the Great Highway (the road that parallels the beach) for a total of 15 miles. It was a really exciting run- I forgot how much can happen when you are out on these long running adventures. In the park we saw turtles and a waterfall (oh, and don't forget the buffalo), then we climbed up a long hill to a gorgeous view of the coast and the city, and then I ran along a busy beach path with tons of other runners, some were cheering for each other (training groups are common there, and they cheer and yell for all runners!). We were consistent with our pace, even on the hills. There were lots of street crossings and other obstacles, which made it hard to get into a groove, but oh well. There was so much going on around us, the run flew by. :)
I went for a short, easy bike ride yesterday - about 6 miles including one stop at the library and another at the park. Otherwise, took the day off.
TOTAL miles for the week: 40!! This was my goal so I'm very happy. I've never hit 40 miles a week when not in Marathon training. Cool.
PLUS: 2000 meters swimming, and just 6 miles on the bike. (I know, I know).
Here's my plan for this week:
Monday: 7 miles
Tuesday: swim, 3 miles easy
Wednesday: 5k Race!
Friday: 5 miles
Saturday: 11 miles
Sunday: swim, bike
The 5k race should be fun. I did the 10k event in 2005 and placed 2nd in my age group! My PR for the 5k is pretty fast for me- 22:08, so I don't know if I'll beat it. But if anything it's replacing my speedwork this week. I don't think it's too close to my half to cause any problems. Weeee!