HOF Half Marathon Training: Week Eleven

We’re now in the home stretch of the training cycle, and I finally got out of the rut I was in, well most of it anyway. This week was fairly uneventful, and luckily I was able to spend some much needed time away from our recovering cat and catching up with friends and family.

Monday- 0

Tuesday-6 Miles, 1 Mile w/u, 3×1600 w/400 recovery, 1.25 Mile c/d

Wednesday- 0

Thursday- 2 Miles

Friday- 0

Saturday- 11 Miles

Sunday- 0 Miles

Total Miles-19 Miles

Not quite the total mileage I wanted, but I felt great after every run. Tuesday I decided to switch things up a bit and ran mile repeats instead of 800’s. I forgot how much I love the mile, and plan on testing my limits with that distance this summer.

Thursday I got home late so I was limited on time before dinner, but I powered through 2 miles and negative split every 800. Even when runs are short, I try to make them hard.

Saturday I picked sleep over a 6:30am group run, and I didn’t regret it. Instead I ran at 11am and despite the brutal wind, I felt pretty good. Between the inlet, the marsh and the trails, I covered all of Buckeye Woods and by mile 9.5 I could tell I was ready to be done.

IMG_9326

Another week done, another week closer to race day. I have one more long run before I cut back on mileage. And honestly, I’m ready for this training cycle to be over. It’s been a weird one for sure. Spring training cycles usually suffer because of the the weather and lack of motivation due to the weather. But this cycle, I did great on all my long runs, it was really the weekday runs that suffered. Hopefully now that the weather is warming up, I can change that.

And if you’re keeping track of mileage, that’s 82 miles for March (my highest March mileage ever) and 222 so far for 2015. Idealy I’d like to hit at least 90 for April, if not more. Fingers crossed!

 

HOF Half Marathon Training: Week Nine and Ten

I opted to combine training weeks 9 and 10, because they weren’t anything too spectacular. I had good intentions in the beginning of both weeks, but for one reason or another, workouts were the last thing I had time for.

Week 9

Monday- 0

Tuesday-6 Miles, 6×800 repeats

Wednesday- 0

Thursday- 0

Friday- 0

Saturday- Strongsville Super Saturday 5k

Sunday- 0

Total Miles-9 Miles

I lacked on workouts in week 9, but the ones I did were hard on effort. I had one of my best 800 repeat workouts of the cycle on Tuesday which was definitely uplifting. I had meant to run on Wednesday or Thursday, but things just kept coming up to prevent me from getting out there. Poor scheduling on my part.

Saturday I ran a 5k, recap to come this week, which was again, a solid effort and a hard workout. I’m not sure what happened Sunday, but motivation was no where to be found. I kept putting off my long run until it was too late. I found comfort in the idea that maybe I needed a weekend off of long runs, and to start fresh the following week.

Week 10

Monday- 0

Tuesday- 1 Mile

Wednesday- 4 Miles, 4×800 repeats

Thursday- 0

Friday- 0

Saturday- 0

Sunday- 10 Miles

Total Miles-15 Miles

And then week 10  happened. Our poor cat Pudge decided to eat 6 inches of an earbud cord, which lead to surgery, constant watching, and a very stressful and tiring week. The poor thing had to be kept in a separate room and needed almost constant attention.

Luckily Darren could work from home, and my mom could stop over when neither of us could take off work. Unfortunately, the little guy was having some separation anxiety and would take off his cone while we weren’t home, which means he could pick at his stitches. Cue additional stress.

The little patient

The little patient

Needless to say, we’re in the home stretch, and he should be allowed out by Saturday. But with all of going on, my runs were scattered, rushed, and not what I wanted.

Tuesday I did a quick progression mile. I wish I had time for more, but didn’t, so I tried to make it count. Wednesday I snuck down to the treadmill and hammered out a speed workout. Not as long as I wanted, but it was better than nothing.

Thankfully Sunday I was able to get out and do a long run with Mallory. We ran 7.25 miles together and I finished up the rest on my own. It was exactly the run I needed. I felt a little out of shape at times, but it was the perfect way to step away from the past two weeks and remind myself that I’ll have bad days or weeks.

10 miles of relaxation

10 miles of relaxation

This training cycle has been a weird one. I’ve had my ups and downs, and of course the weather hasn’t helped over the past few months. But comparing myself from previous spring cycles, I know I’m putting in more work, even though I may have moments of struggle.

I’m looking forward to starting a new week and finishing up these last four weeks where I know I should be. And hopefully, warmer weather will follow!

Wedding Wednesday

Another month has gone by and we’re that much closer to our wedding. Unfortunately I didn’t get as much done this month as I had hoped. I’m not sure how the month went by so quickly, but here we are just 5 months away from saying I do!

Here’s what we accomplished this month

-Booked our honeymoon

-Booked our florist

-Booked the officiant

-Booked rehearsal dinner

 

Our two biggest things were booking our honeymoon and booking our florist. I had been working on some florists for a few months and finally made a decision. One less thing to worry about, and hope that everything turns out beautiful!

 

Our honeymoon was something I was determined to book this month. We changed our minds a few times, but it’s book, and I’m so excited to go to St Martin! Plus this has me both equally freaked out and excited to see.

 

I’m really determined to get a lot done in the next month, mostly because I know once summer hits things will really fly by. Here’s what I want to accomplish within the next month

 

-Order invitations

-Buy or make card box

-Book honeymoon flights

-Work on bridesmaid gifts

-Prepare wine bottles for painting

-Finish wedding registry

-Finalize dinner menu for reception

-Decide on formalwear

-Decide on favors

-Order our Guest Book

-Finish our wedding website


Lots to do! What was your biggest task to accomplish? If you’ve ever been to St. Martin, any recommendations on things to do or see?

HOF Half Marathon Training: Week Eight

I have to say, I was looking forward to this week. It was a cut back week, and I knew I needed it. After two straight weeks of headaches and pure exhaustion last week, I needed a break.

Monday- 0

Tuesday-3 Miles, .5 w/u, 3×800 with 400 recovery, .5 c/d

Wednesday- 0

Thursday- 4.5 Miles
Friday- 0

Saturday- 0

Sunday- 10.5 Miles

Total Miles-18 Miles

Tuesday I was limited on time, so I ran my speed work at home. I did 3 hard 800’s, but wish I had time for more. Still, I was able to get some mileage in, and it wasn’t a wasted workout.

Thursday I ran with Second Sole and it was great to actually have daylight after work! We ran from the store, to Roscoe and back. We managed to keep around an 8:50 pace, which felt a little uncomfortable. I wasn’t sure if it was because I hadn’t been running outside much, or the air was still cold on my lungs. But I was so glad when I finished, I felt fantastic!

Sunday I met up with Mallory and Mo and we tackled a road loop of hinkley. It’ was their second 9 mile loop in their 20 mile workout, so we took it easier than their first. I felt good despite the hills, and actually felt stronger than the previous weekend. While it’s hard to keep a steady pace on the hills, we were able to push 8:50 pace on the very few flat sections, and finished with an 8:20 pace.

Little slice of peace

Little slice of peace

Despite the lack of miles and days spent running, I felt great on every run. I finally felt like my body and legs were on the same page, and I could tell everything was clicking by how strong I felt.

I’m looking forward to another week of some higher mileage, another yoga class, and my first race of 2015!

HOF Half Marathon Training: Week Seven

With week 7 complete, we’re half way through training for the Pro Football Hall of Fame Half Marathon. I’ve been pleasantly surprised with how well training is going, even with a few bumps in the road. My long run is already longer than it was at this point last year, and I’m at the highest mileage during the first three months of the year than I can ever remember. It’s been a painful winter, but I think it will pay off.

Monday- 0

Tuesday-5 Miles

Wednesday- 5 Miles, 1 Mile, 5×800, .5 Mile

Thursday- 0

Friday- 0

Saturday- 1.5 Miles, 1 Hour Yoga

Sunday- 12.6 Miles

Total Miles- 24.1 Miles

Something I was excited to start this month was the new MCRR 30 day challenge. Last month were planks, but I could only make it so far without struggling. But I’m excited for this challenge…buns, guns and abs! Darren has also joined in, so suddenly it has become a competition.

Tuesday was spent on the indoor track, which I actually missed for once. It felt so good to be moving around, rather than staying on the treadmill. Mallory and I ran 5 easy miles, pushing the speedwork to Wednesday.

Wednesday I ran my 800’s at home on the treadmill. I was feeling a little feverish all day, so I was hoping to sweat it out. I pushed myself more than I normally do on this workout, and hopefully it will pay off.

Saturday I wanted to try something new, so I went to the local yoga studio for an hour of relaxation. I started with a 1.5 mile warm up run, and an hour of super warm yoga. It was a good class, but a little warmer than I was used to. I’m definitely interested in going back and trying a few other classes. I think getting back into yoga will help with my hips and hopefully keep me from getting injured.

Sunday I was finally able to do a long run outside. We went to Hinckley Reservation and were met with almost perfect road conditions. There were a few spots of ice, but with the temps between 25-35 degrees during our run, it was perfect!

Morning miles on the back roads

Morning miles on the back roads

We had a group of 5 and we kept a pretty steady pace. The 9 mile loop is full of hills of all sizes, and considering I hadn’t run anything with major hills for a while, I was a little nervous. I made it through and even tackled Effie without stopping, knowing the hardest part of the run was over at 6.5 miles in.

Looking down on Effie, with no sight of the beginning

Looking down on Effie, with no sight of the beginning

We finished up the 9 mile loop and dropped three runners off. Mallory and I hit the lake loop to get up to 12 for the day, dodging ice and conquering some smaller hills. I’m looking forward to warmer weather and hitting up the lower loop and trails without falling.

Hinckley Lake

Hinckley Lake

Even though our pace was slower than normal it was still great to get out there and get the miles in. I always feel like running Hinckley is more of a challenge than most places, but I also feel that I’ve pushed myself harder as well. I’m still getting used to the hills and each time I can tackle Effie, I know I’m getting stronger.

Hills, hills, and more hills!

Hills, hills, and more hills!

Half way done with training, and my long runs are exceeding expectations. I’m looking forward to continuing my speed work and making my long runs stronger.

HOF Half Training: Week Six

This week didn’t go as originally planned. I wanted to work towards my goal of hitting 100 miles for February, but that idea quickly diminished after multiple things kept popping up that kept me from running. Wedding planning took over big time this week and it felt like almost every day I was meeting with someone or doing something from the wedding. Unfortunately, this meant training took a back seat.

Monday- 0
Tuesday- 0
Wednesday- 1 Mile
Thursday- 5.5 Miles, 1 Mile w/u, 5×800 with 400m recovery, 1 Mile c/d
Friday- 0
Saturday- 0
Sunday- 10 Miles
Total Miles-16.5 Miles

Such low mileage, it’s embarrassing. Since I couldn’t make Tuesday’s speed work, I pushed it to Wednesday, but for some reason my knee had a twinge that made me nervous to continue past my warm up mile. So I decided to play it safe and call it.

Thursday I knew I had to run something, so I did my speedwork. I felt ok, but probably didn’t push myself as much as I could. But I was glad I didn’t push it off.

Saturday was supposed to be my long run, and after waking up to a temperature of -15, I knew I’d be on the treadmill, then we had some unexpected visitors, and so I pushed my long run to Sunday. I spent my long run on the treadmill while another storm was dumping snow outside. I’m almost to the point that if I’m going to be on the treadmill, I’d rather run long than short, but I still don’t love it.

I made my way through more episodes of Friends, currently at season 2, and started to feel tightness in my left hip by mile 9. After another mile, the soreness wasn’t going away and I knew it was caused by the way I was landing on the treadmill. So instead of 11 miles, I stopped at 10 and stretched out as much as I could.

Not my best week, but I’m still hitting my speed workouts and my long runs, everything else is just recovery. I ended up with 77 miles for February, which honestly is my highest mileage yet for that month, and still higher than the 63 I ran in January. I’m thinking of going on a break with my treadmill, now that we’re supposed to have a heat wave of 30-40 degrees. I hope that with the end of February, we’re done with the cold, miserable, snowy weather and I can finally enjoy some outdoor running.

Wedding Wednesday

We’re just six months away, six months! I think this mile marker really hit home and I realized how quickly everything was going by, and how little time I still have left. I’m told that I’m ahead of schedule and that I shouldn’t have anything to worry about, but I still feel like I have a lot to do.

Here’s what we were able to accomplish this month

-Sent save the dates

-Booked the cake baker

-Created a short list of rehearsal dinner restaurants

-Designed invitations

-Booked the DJ

-Found my wedding day shoes

-Bought wedding bands

-Verbal agreement with officiant

Some things really just fell into place and have been fairly easy. Our cake baker lives down the street from us and has a mutual acquaintance, so once we had a meet and greet we knew we were in the right direction. Sending out the save the dates was pretty easy as well, with the exception of a few stragglers, but now that they’re out, I can focus on the invitations!

Some things have not been as easy, such as finding heels that will look good with my dress and also come in a size 5. Luckily I found the perfect pair, and they fit perfectly. Finding restaurants for after the rehearsal dinner has also been a little challenging as well. Trying to keep proximity, budget and non chain restaurants for consideration wasn’t as easy as we hoped, but we’ve narrowed it down, and now have to try them all out.

To keep myself from stressing out, I’ve started to make a list of what I want to accomplish every weekend. It’s helping, but I still can’t help that I’m forgetting things. Thankfully my mom and sister have done a few shopping trips to help me with centerpieces and decorations.

This was a good month for getting things done, but it’s only going to get more hectic from this point on. Here’s what I want to accomplish in the next four weeks!

-Book our honeymoon

-Order invitations

-Finalize dinner menu for reception

-Decide on formalwear

-Decide on favors

-Book our florist

-Book the officiant

-Order our Guest Book

-Finish our wedding website

-Prep wine bottles for painting

How do you break down your wedding projects? What little things am I forgetting?

HOF Half Marathon Training: Week Five

What a week. I was stressed from almost every single angle, and running was the only way to keep me semi sane. I think I have reached my breaking point with winter. These brutal temps and deep snow have me longing for warmer weather, and right about now, I’m considering anything above 25 degrees tropical!

Monday- 0

Tuesday- 7.5 Miles, 2 Mile W/U, 5×800 w/400 repeats, 2 Mile C/D

Wednesday- 2 Miles

Thursday- 0

Friday- 0

Saturday- 10 Miles

Sunday- 7 Miles

Total Miles-26.5 Miles

Tuesday was a much needed speed workout. We started with two miles on the track and 5×800 repeats on the treadmill. It was pretty busy and abnormally hot at the rec, so these weren’t pleasant, but it was nice to run somewhere other than my basement.

Wednesday was a rough day. It was uncomfortably warm in the basement and my iPad’s battery died after 2 miles. I definitely wasn’t feeling the run, so I just called it. I also noticed a bit of a pull in my arch, hoping it was just the angle I was running, and that it doesn’t lead to anything serious.

The normal view these days

The normal view these days

Saturday I was determined to hit my long run, one way or another. I had thought of joining the group run, but when I noticed how quickly the snow was coming down, I decided to attempt the treadmill. I broke it up into episodes of Friends, and upped my pace at every new episode. I’m not sure how, but I made it. 10 miles on the treadmill is rough!

Sunday I met up with Mallory and Mo to run outside for the first time in two weeks! It was chilly, but absolutely wonderful, and just what I needed to get rid of some cabin fever. We ended up with 7 miles around town, about 9 minute average pace. While it felt amazing to get outside, my legs were a little tight later on in the day from all the hills and inclines.

It hit me that we’re already getting into week 6, and I feel that I’m at a much better point this year, than I ever have been for a spring half. Looking forward, all of my long runs will be between 10-14 miles with the exception of two cut back weeks. And even though I had a tough start, I feel more confident than I ever have at the end of February. What’s most surprising is I’ll be ending the shortest month of the year with almost 100 miles…which has never happened. I’m still debating if I want to push for 29 miles in six days, but I’m already close so I might as well!

 

HOF Half Marathon Training: Week Four

Week four is complete, and my body is starting to get used to a regular schedule again. This was a cut back week, so I knew going in I wouldn’t have too many high mileage days, but I ended up a little under what I should have done. I’m also super tired and feel like I’m on the edge of fighting a bug, so crossing my fingers I don’t get sick any time soon.

Monday- 0
Tuesday- 2 Miles
Wednesday-5 Miles, 1 Mile W/U, 4×800 repeat with 400 recovery, 1 Mile C/D
Thursday- 0
Friday- 0
Saturday- 4 Miles
Sunday- 5.5 Miles
Total Miles-16.5 Miles

Monday was a rest day, and well, Tuesday wasn’t too active either. I got home late and just had no motivation to run on the treadmill. So I did an easy two to get something done, but I actually felt pretty tight from all the miles over the weekend. Not a huge problem, instead switched Tuesday and Wednesday’s workout.

Wednesday I was determined to get my speed work done. Because we didn’t meet for our regular Tuesday workout, I was alone on the treadmill at home. I turned on my trusty iPad and knocked out four 800 repeats while watching Friends. I felt pretty good, and it was nice to push myself a bit.

Thursday and Friday were off, but Saturday I was back on the treadmill. It was pretty gross outside, so I stayed in the basement. To mix things up a bit, I changed the incline every time the scene changed in Friends. It was definitely a different way to make it through a workout, but at least I wasn’t too bored.

Sunday was my longer run, and again I spent it on the treadmill. I slogged through 5.5 miles, but it actually didn’t feel that long. I’m getting to a point where I’m ready to run outside again, but unfortunately, the weather is just not cooperating.

HOF Half Marathon Training: Week Two & Three

After a week of traveling, and another week of playing catch up, I was finally able to get caught up on my training recaps. Because weeks two and three were less than normal, I’ll be combining them together.

Week 2

Monday- 0

Tuesday- 3 Miles Biked + Core

Wednesday-0

Thursday- 0
Friday- 0

Saturday- 0

Sunday- 6 Miles

Total Miles-6 Miles Run, 3 Miles Biked

Talk about a horrible week! I was traveling in Toronto from Tuesday through Thursday, so I was stuck with a tight schedule, and limited gym equipment. The only time I got to the hotel gym, I was forced to the bike because all of the treadmills were taken. The rest of the trip was spent schmoozing with customers, fancy dinners and tracking down my luggage that was left in Canada. The only positive of the trip was the beautiful views outside my hotel room.

Beautiful downtown Toronto

Beautiful downtown Toronto

Saturday was intended to be my long run, but instead we were on the road from 9:30am to 6pm picking up our new treadmill! Our new (to us) treadmill was a Christmas gift we bought from my aunt. It’s in perfect condition, and I spent Sunday morning trying it out. I’m looking forward to many miles in the basement after spending so much time at the rec center doing laps!

Week 3

Monday- 0

Tuesday- 6 Miles + Core

Wednesday-0

Thursday- 0
Friday- 0

Saturday- 9 Miles

Sunday- 6.5 Miles

Total Miles-21.5 Miles

It felt so good to be back to a somewhat normal schedule this week. I started Tuesday with speedwork. Bob taught us about his half and half progression workout for the treadmill. For every half mile run, bump up the speed by half. So we started at 5 and got up to 7.5 for a total of 3 miles. Pair it with a two mile warm up and one mile cool down, it was a great workout. I don’t do many progression runs (on purpose) so it was a nice way to break up the normal 800 repeats.

Mid week was spent catching up on things after work and surviving the snowstorm, but the weekend was all about the miles.

Saturday was my long run and I spent all 9 miles on the treadmill. This was the longest amount of time or miles that I’ve spent on a treadmill, but I managed. I decided the best way to help pass the time was to start watching Friends from the very beginning. I was able to get 4 episodes in and it really didn’t feel like I spent an hour and a half on the treadmill. Mission accomplished!

Perfect post treadmill ice bath!

Perfect post treadmill ice bath!

I expected to feel rough when I woke up Sunday morning, knowing that the previous day’s mileage was the furthest I’ve gone since the marathon. Surprisingly I felt great, and met Mallory for a recovery run. We ventured down Roscoe, but were greeted with ice and slush so we went to the surrounding neighborhoods. I felt great despite the fact our entire route was rolling hills. Quickly a four mile recovery run ended up at six and a half and I think I could have gone even further.

A beautiful mess

A beautiful mess

So a few weeks of up and downs, but it’s still early on, so I’m not too worried. Winter is always a challenge with training, once March rolls around, things should be pretty much back to normal.