Coastal Delaware Marathon Training: Week Five

Week 5 and my main goal of this week was to make sure the pain in my shin was gone, and that I was back to running healthy. I did fairly well in keeping all pain minimal by icing, elevating and wearing compression socks/sleeves whenever I could. And I survived the week without any pain, until the very end.

Monday: 0

Tuesday: 5.5 Miles, 1 mile w/u, 3×1600 (8:57, 8:55, 8:51) w/400 recovery, 1 mile c/d + Abs

Wednesday: 5 Miles + Abs & Arms

Thursday: 5.65 Miles, 1 mile w/u, 6×600 hill w/400 recovery, 1 mile, c/d + Abs

Friday: 0

Saturday: 15.6 Miles

Sunday: 0

Total: 31.75 Miles

Tuesday I was back on the treadmill for some mile repeats. I was nervous going in that I’d have some shin pain, so I took my warm up mile pretty easy. Thankfully I was pain free. I didn’t push myself as much as I could have, but I didn’t want to bring on any more pain. I felt good, and decided a step back in training last week was the best decision for me.

I  met up with Mallory on Wednesday and we did some easy miles at the rec. It was so nice to finally run on something other than the treadmill, even if the track is 10 laps per mile. We kept things to an easy conversational pace and it went by pretty quickly, despite going around and around for ever.

Thursday I was back on the treadmill for some hill repeats. I decided to move the incline to 5 this time and see how things would go. I felt pretty strong and decided to increase the speed with each one. By the 4th one, I was wearing down a bit, but I pushed myself to complete all six. I may not feel it now, but doing hill repeats every other week will eventually pay off.

Saturday was the first official course run for the Medina Half! Since I didn’t get a long run in last week, I was aiming for 15-16 miles. I was pretty nervous for this run and wasn’t sure how it would go. I think the last time I ran 14+ miles was fall of 2014, so clearly I felt the pressure to run it well.

The goal was to run the half course and tack on miles at the end. The Medina Half course changed this year, and I can honestly say, it’s probably the best course yet. You still wind through a few neighborhoods with gradual inclines, but avoiding the giant hill on Rt. 18 is amazing. And with the addition of a new path and bridge, you now get to spend some extra time around Lake Medina.

I felt relatively well during the long run, fueling at 4 and 10. We had a small group that stuck together and we chatted the miles away, dodging some leftover ice and getting a few Bald Eagle sightings. Once we got back to the square, I ran the last few miles on my own around town, finishing up with 15.6 miles.

Lake Medina

Lake Medina

I meant to do my recovery run on Sunday, but I woke up a bit sore and had minimal shin pain. Throughout the day, I still felt tight and the pain in my leg would come and go. Ultimately, I decided to take the day off, and really rethink the next week of training.

Overall it was a pretty good week. I’m at my highest weekly mileage and on track for my highest monthly mileage ever. My only concern is the recurring shin pain. I’ve nearly doubled my mileage, which is probably the reason behind the pain. I need to take a few days to recover and think about how to train smarter while building my mileage. I looked back at Wineglass training, and I didn’t push the longer runs (15+) until week 7 or 8, so I’m a bit ahead of what I’ve done in the past. There’s still plenty of time to get long runs in, so I just need to look at the training again, and see what works and what doesn’t.

 

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Coastal Delaware Marathon Training: Week Four

Week four is done and honestly, I can’t believe we’re already this far into the training cycle. I know that 18 weeks can seem daunting, but knowing that I only have 14 weeks left to get ready still makes me nervous! This week was a rough one, and I eventually decided that it would be a cut back week…on Sunday. Things just weren’t clicking this week and I could tell my body needed a bit of a break.

Monday: 0

Tuesday: 6 Miles, 1 mile w/u, 3×1600 (8:53, 8:42, 8:55) w/400 recovery, 1.5 mile c/d + Abs & Arms

Wednesday: 0

Thursday: 5 Miles

Friday: 0

Saturday: 6 Miles + Abs

Sunday: 3.5 Miles + Abs

Total: 20.5 Miles

Tuesday I was back at the rec, and ready for some mile repeats. We started with our mile warm up on the track and headed to the treadmill for our repeats. Last time I did these, I hovered around a 9:00 minute pace. This time I wanted to push myself a little, so I upped the speed. I was in a pretty good groove and despite being a bit bored, I felt like I was doing a good job of working hard. Until my third repeat when the treadmill hit the 30 minute limit and shut down on me. I tried to get back up to speed as quickly as I could, but the overall time was my slowest. We finished up with a 1.5 mile cool down, some abs and an incredibly hard arm workout.

I had to skip my Wednesday workout again this week. I woke up to a migraine in the middle of the night and was still feeling the tail end of it by evening. Fortunately, or unfortunately, I’ve had enough migraines to know running is the opposite of what I should do. I was disappointed I couldn’t get my run in, but I can’t fight a migraine, no matter how bad I want to run.

I was feeling better on Thursday, so I hit the treadmill. I was aiming to run between 5-7 miles, but mentally I could barely make it to two. I switched up the speed every once and while I found a new show on Netflix, I was still bored out of my mind. It was a struggle, but I got 5 miles in. Sometimes treadmill runs are great, and sometimes they’re the last place I want to be.

How we feel about treadmill runs.

Looks like we have the same thoughts on treadmill runs.

Saturday I took the opportunity to sleep in and run on the treadmill. I was a little nervous for how it would go after Thursday’s breakdown, but I actually felt great. I increased the speed every 10 minutes or so, and never felt the need for a break or to jump off.

"Faster! Faster!"

“Faster! Faster!”

Sunday was pretty much a disaster. After skipping the group run at Hinckley, a few of us decided to run in the afternoon. Until the roads got nasty and I was forced back to the treadmill. I wasn’t in the mindset to run long on the treadmill, but I wanted to see how far I could get without struggling. Unfortunately, my shin had other plans when it decided to have a faint pain in it. I knew not to work it hard, and called it after 3.5 miles. Not a great workout at all.

Overall this week was a bit of a roller coaster. I had a few good runs, and I had a few horrible runs. I’ve had a slight pain in my shin from time to time for the past four days, and I know it’s because I’ve increased my mileage by a lot in such a short amount of time. I always do this, and always need to step back a few weeks into the new training cycle. Pushing myself too much now is not worth the risk of injury. I still have 12 weeks left, which is plenty of time to get ready for the marathon.

Sometimes all you need is a bit of rest and recovery.

Sometimes all you need is a bit of rest and recovery.

I also wanted to focus on hydration and sleep this week. I had over 5 hours of sleep 4 of the 5 weekday nights, which is an improvement to say the least. I tried to be asleep by 10pm, which still gave me plenty of time to toss and turn many times each night.

I also made sure to have at least 30oz of water a day. It’s still not enough, but it’s a goal to aim for. And just like Wineglass, I’ve been cutting back on wine and only drinking it two to three nights a week. This will help to keep me hydrated and hopefully allow me to sleep better.

Next week I’ll be back to my higher mileage, hopefully less pain, and some stronger runs!

Coastal Delaware Marathon Training: Week Two

Week two is in the books, and it went so much better than the first. I was happy to be back on somewhat of a routine, but having friends around to join in my runs helped to keep me on track. I’m definitely feeling a lot more confident about training after this past week. Especially because I hit my highest mileage in a single week since Wineglass training!

Monday: 0

Tuesday: 5.5 Miles, 1 mile w/u, 3×1600 with 400 recovery (9:05, 8:57, 8:57), 1 mile c/d + Abs & Lifting

Wednesday: 7.1 Miles + Abs

Thursday: 6 Miles + Abs, Butt & Arms from Daily Workout App (DWA)

Friday: 0

Saturday: 12.22 + Abs

Sunday: 0

Total: 30.82 Miles

 

Even looking over each day, I feel a bit exhausted! I skipped any sort of yoga on Monday, mostly because I just can’t get into it by myself. Which is fine, because Monday is rest or yoga, but hopefully I can find a yoga class to join that fits my schedule.

Tuesday I wasn’t feeling so hot, so instead of going to the gym, I stuck to the treadmill. I had mile repeats on the schedule, so I pushed through and got them done, just above the time I needed. I think I’m actually starting to enjoy speed work on the treadmill because it keeps me focused on the pace, even if it doesn’t exactly line up with the set speeds. I followed up with abs and a little bit of lifting.

Wednesday I met up with the marathon girls and we ran along Lester Trail. My legs were a bit stiff from Tuesday, but it felt good to be on softer ground. I hadn’t been able to run Lester much since the time change, so it was nice to get out there and run one of my favorite trails. Once I got home, I did some abs.

IMG_1453

Thursday was a bit tough. My legs were definitely feeling the increase in mileage, but I wasn’t going to back out of the run. I met up with Mallory and we ran two loops at Hinckley Lake. It was a nice change, but it can still be a bit challenging with the smaller hills. We kept an easy pace and walked the slippery bridges, no need to fall and injure ourselves!

So peaceful, but so chilly.

So peaceful, but so chilly.

After I got home, I tried a new app that Jennifer had mentioned to us. Daily Workout App or DWA from now on, has a variety of workouts ranging from 5-10 minutes and focuses on different parts of the body. I had been using workouts I’d found from Pinterest, but from now on, I’ll be using this to tone my abs, arms, legs,etc. I think it will be perfect to keep me motivated on lifting and my ab routine.

Home screen of Daily Workout App. So many options!

Home screen of Daily Workout App. So many options!

Saturday was my long run, and I met up with a group of 10-12 at Hinckley. Some of us came early and ran a lake loop. After we finished, we met up with the rest of the group and headed out for our road loop. I hadn’t done a long run in a while, so I was a bit concerned how this would go. The first three miles, most of us stuck together, which helped the miles fly by. It was about the three mile point of the road loop/sixth mile of the day, I took advantage of a decent sized hill and walked/fueled while I had the chance. But once I got to the top, I found myself in between groups and spent the next two miles trying to catch up. Eventually I decided to just do my own thing, and run the pace I was comfortable with. I ended up running the last six miles alone but always had the next group in sight. Typically I would have dreaded being by myself, but I spent the time reflecting on the year, thinking of what I want to accomplish in the next 12 months, and singing “Hello” by Adele.

Tough run, but Bart Yasso approves!

Tough run, but Bart Yasso approves!

I planned on doing a recovery run on Sunday, but my legs were really sore. I jumped a bunch in mileage, and I didn’t want to overdo it this early on in the training cycle. Instead, we watched the entire Making a Murderer series. Netflix marathon for marathon training? It works.

Overall this week was so much better than last. I ran more, I drank more water and I was able to sneak in a few extra minutes of sleep each day. Mentally I feel a lot more prepared for training, and I just hope I can keep the momentum up.

 

*Also, Nuun is currently having a discontinuation sale on three of it’s flavors. Right now, Kona Cola, Lemon Tea, and Lemonade are just $4.00! Watermelon is also on sale, but not being discontinued. So stock up before they’re gone!

Frosty 5 Miler Recap

On Christmas Eve, I ran the Frosty 5 Mile race in Hudson. I typically don’t run any races near Christmas, but after a bunch of MCRR members signed up, I decided I would give it a shot. We met up at 6:45am and drove to Hudson, picked up our bibs, stayed warm in the car and watched the 1 Mile race.

The weather was a bit chilly, but it definitely could have been a lot colder, or worse, we could have been running on ice or snow. We decided to run the race as a group and do it as a fun run. We lined up, and shortly after the National Anthem, we were off!

We started from the square and ran up Main Street. This was the first time I’d ever been to Hudson, so I was enjoying the sights of the cute town and all of the older houses decorated for Christmas. We continued up College St. and ran around some more homes. The first mile had a nice gradual incline that didn’t seem as bad in the beginning, but I could feel it the longer we were running.

Mile 1-9:22

The first mile seemed to go on forever, but isn’t it always like that in the shorter races? At this point, I was wishing the race was a 5k, and I was a little concerned I was going to struggle with the race. After making our way past Western Reserve Academy we headed over to Hayden Parkway. We kept ourselves busy by talking and I could feel the pace start to pick up a bit. I was still feeling strong, but didn’t want to go out too fast and tire too much towards the end.

Mile 2-8:41

We continued along through the housing developments, which reminded me a little of Medina. The next mile and a half were pretty much a blur. Everything looked pretty much the same and there was nothing too exciting. At some point, Mo ran into some friends, so they joined us for a bit.

Mile 3-8:56

With two miles to go, I was still feeling pretty good, and trying not to check my Garmin. We headed down Ravenna Street, which was a little more open than the developments. Next, we headed to a park and ran around the two ponds. It was a  nice little break from the streets and even though most trees were without leaves, it was very pretty.

Mile 4-8:56

We finished up around the lake, and with just one mile left I started to pick up the pace a bit. We headed back towards the square and were greeted again with the older, beautiful homes. I checked my Garmin with about a half mile to go, and didn’t think I was anywhere close to my PR. So I didn’t push it too hard, but kept up a quicker pace. We had a few turns left but we finally made our last turn and headed into the finish line.

Mile 5-8:34

I thought this was a great race! I don’t run too many 5 milers, but this one is definitely on my list for future races. The course was well marked and Western Reserve Racing did a great job of hosting. We really lucked out with weather, which can always be dicy this time of year.

The course was beautiful, especially around the square and through the park. It isn’t too challenging, but there are a few smaller hills. And it turns out, it’s a pretty fast course. After checking my data, I was just 46 seconds off my PR! If I had known that, I would have pushed it a little more. I definitely recommend this race and will be there next year, weather permitting 😉

MCRR!

MCRR!

Results:

Official Time: 43:11

Age Group 25-29: 14/52

Female:106/282

Overall: 275/657

Fun new race tee!

Fun new race tee!

Coastal Delaware Marathon Training: Week One

The first week of training is done, and we’re just going to pretend it was a warm up. I’m not sure why I thought I could balance the first week of training with the week of Christmas, but I didn’t fare too well.

I only managed three days of workouts, and just two with runs. I also tracked my sleep schedule and water intake, which wasn’t impressive either.  With unusual schedules, excessive food, and plenty of time in the car. This week was just a plain bust. But at least it can only go up from here!

Monday: 30 minutes Jasyoga- Dynamic Hamstring Flexibility

Tuesday: 0

Wednesday: 0

Thursday: Frosty 5 Miler

Friday: 0

Saturday: 5.28 miles + Abs

Sunday: 0

Total: 10.28 Miles

I started Monday with a quick Jasyoga session. My hips are terribly weak so I thought this may be a good video for me. It definitely helped to stretch me out, but I’d prefer to be in a class rather than by myself.

I didn’t get out on a run until Thursday. I’m not sure how that happened, but I didn’t feel prepared for the race. We decided to run as a group and I was pushed to medium effort, but ran well. I’ll have a recap up later this week.

MCRR at Frosty 5 Miler!

MCRR at Frosty 5 Miler!

I was able to get in a short run on Saturday before heading out of town. I didn’t feel fantastic, most likely from all the food I had all week. I ran from home, to the square and back. It’s mostly a gradual uphill there and a nice decline on the way back. I ended up negative splitting all but the last mile and felt great. The only downside of this route is traffic and the constant stopping and starting.

 

December 26th, still no snow

December 26th, still no snow

I had good intentions to do my long run Sunday morning, but the weather was horrible where we were and I didn’t have access to a gym. Major fail on my part.

Clearly this week was rough on my training. But I was able to spend time with family and had a wonderful Christmas. This week was just one of eighteen. I have plenty of time to get ready, and I’m not going to let this week stress me out.

On to week two!

Here we go again!

Well, well. I’ve found myself back at the beginning of a training cycle once again. Only this year I won’t be training for a spring half. Instead, I’m stretching the long runs a bit longer, and for the first time, I’ll be training for a spring marathon. Yikes! Even typing it feels a little scary, maybe because we’ve had two harsh winters back to back that make me a bit concerned on what this winter will bring. But it’s time I put on my big girl shoes (with the help of few friends) and get back on the road to running a 4:30 marathon!

Now, if you remember, in the fall of 2014, I ran the Wineglass Marathon. Training was amazing, my head, heart and legs were ready to run a 4:30 and I truly believed I could do it. Unfortunately, my head got the best of me, and I hit the wall hard at mile 16, and again at mile 20, and well, the race didn’t turn out anything like I had imagined. I still pulled on a 21+ minute PR, but my dream of running a 4:30 marathon was crushed. I vowed to never run a marathon again, at least for a long while. Then 2015 happened, and instead of training for a marathon, I got married. Which in retrospect, was a lot more fun. So even though running was a complete disaster, I won the more important prize.

But, it turns out, when you get a bunch of runners together, add a bit of wine, and the post run break high of loving running once again, you decide you want to run a marathon. So over the past few months, four of us have been researching races, narrowing down schedules, and we finally decided on a spring marathon! I’m excited to announce that I’ll be running the Coastal Delaware Marathon on April 24th!

unnamed

I’ve trained for three marathons, and have run two, so I’m not completely new to the distance, but I still find there are things that need improvement. Over the next 18 weeks, I’ve set out a plan, made some changes from previous mistakes, but also kept what I excelled at. Here’s a look at what to expect.

Mileage:

During Wineglass training, I hit 100+ miles for three out of four months of training. Because of this, I felt that my running was much stronger. With longer runs during the week, plus more days on my feet, my long runs (15+ miles) felt much easier that I expected them to. So I plan on upping my mileage, running 4-5 days per week and expanding my long run to 22 miles.

I’ll be using the Runner’s World training plan I used last time, but I’ll be making some minor tweaks to accommodate longer runs and my schedule. I’m hoping with more mileage, I’ll be more prepared and I won’t panic about the distance mid race like at Wineglass.

Cross Training:

This is something I severely lack. I was good about it during Wineglass, but I need to step it up again. Unfortunately, my commute gets in the way of being able to join classes after work. Considering I don’t get home until 6:30, and even later during the winter, making it to class on time is almost out of the question. So, it looks like I’ll be doing much of this on my own. I’ve decided to try the following

-Monday: Yoga (at least 30 minutes)

-Tuesday/Thursday: Lift

-After every run: Abs

Hopefully I can stick to this plan and see some improvements. We’ll see how it goes.

Diet and Hydration:

The biggest thing that can turn my run from a great one to a horrible one, is my stomach. I’ve found a few things that work for me pre run and during, but there is always room for improvement. The biggest improvement I want to make is no longer eating dinner at 9:00pm or later. Again, thanks to our long commutes, we eat much later than normal people. But when you get home at 6:30, workout until 7:30 or 8, it’s rare to eat at a decent time. Regardless of what time I eat, I still should be eating healthier.

I also need to stay hydrated. I’m aiming to drink at least 50 oz of water a day, hopefully more. It shouldn’t be too hard during the week, but weekends could be a bit challenging.

Sleep:

It’s no secret that I struggle with sleep. On average, I get about 4.5 hours of solid sleep a night. Some days I’m not even sure how I function. The more sleep I get, the better I can recovery and the more motivation I’ll have.

 

And of course, here’s a look at the training planned for the next 18 weeks. I hope to stick to it as close as I can, but I also need to prepared for life to get in the way at times.

JC_Stone_50k___Coastal_Delaware_Training_-_Google_Sheets

So here we go. 18 weeks, lots of miles, and fingers crossed for a mild winter. It’s time to start marathon training!

Seattle Half Marathon Recap

When we first starting planning our trip to Seattle back in the spring, I naturally looked up to see if there were any races during that weekend. Aside from some Thanksgiving Day races, I found four half marathons over the long weekend, and finally set my sights on the Seattle Half Marathon. I didn’t register at the time, but still planned on running it. When we got around to booking our flights, my fitness level was at it lowest. But over the last couple of months, I worked my way up in mileage and completed a half marathon. So I registered.

Going in, I didn’t really have any goals other than to finish. I was on vacation, this was going to be a fun run, and the perfect opportunity to cross Washington off my list of states. But since I had to have some plan in mind, I decided to stick with a 9:30 pace and see what would happen. But I also reminded myself that if I didn’t run well, it’d be ok.

I woke up Sunday morning around 5am, got ready, was extremely nervous and got down to the start line just in time for the race to start. I planned on getting there a little earlier, but those nerves got me. I was hoping it’d be a clear morning like the rest of the week so I could see the Space Needle next to us, unfortunately it was pretty foggy so you couldn’t see anything.

Ready to race!

Ready to race!

The half marathon started at 7:30 and the full marathon at 8:15. This was a wonderful idea since the starting area was less crowded as well as hopefully the race. I lined up between the 2:05-2:10 group. Honestly, I didn’t really check the elevation chart beforehand, it never occurred to me until we got there, and I heard from others, that it was a hilly course. I decided to stick between the two and let things happen. The National Anthem played, I still get goosebumps and almost tears before every race, and then we were off!

I spent most of the first mile just looking around. We started downtown and worked our way through the streets. I wasn’t familiar with the area, so I had the chance to see the city in a new way. I felt pretty well and my pace was good. I was a little concerned I was overdressed-two long sleeve base layers, but knew I’d figure it out later when I needed to.

We ran down 5th and had the monorail right above us. I didn’t see it moving, but thought that would be a neat sight for passengers to view. Right after the first mile marker we had our first hill, and it kept going for over a quarter of a mile. It wasn’t as bad as I expected, and kept trucking along.

Mile 1-9:20

Mile 2-8:52

We continued down 5th until we made our way to the Express Way. We started to have some incline and some great views of the city as it twisted around. I still couldn’t see as much as I hoped since it was foggy, but it made it somewhat more enjoyable. It was somewhere along here that I had a tap on my shoulder from a fellow Oiselle bird. We chatted for a bit, and she told me to save my energy now and that I’d need it from about mile 8 and on.

We parted ways, and continued along, still feeling pretty good and enjoying the chance to run. It was around the 4th mile marker that we made our way into the tunnel. I can’t remember really ever running in a tunnel, so I thought this was pretty neat, and it was, at least for a little while. I started to get warm and thought maybe I should take a layer off, but decided to wait until I got back out in the fresh air. I was also getting to the point where I was over the tunnel, and I just needed to get out. Finally we were out and back into the cold, crisp air. Perfect!

Mile 3- 9:58

Mile 4- 9:26

From here we turned left onto Lake Washington Blvd. But I was pretty jealous of the marathon runners, they’d get to go onto the floating bridge and down to Seward Park. I thought about taking pictures, but I was in a pretty good groove and didn’t want to mess things up. Google Maps does a good job capturing it, but just imagine that it was foggy and gray, and the water was barely visible.

This, but foggy. Photo cred: Google

This, but foggy. Photo: Google

We had a few rollers along the way, but nothing too crazy. I actually prefered the slight up and down so my legs wouldn’t get too bored with a completely flat route. I was still really enjoying myself, singing in my head to a really good iPod playlist and taking in the sights. I loved seeing the different style of houses on the waterfront and trying to sneak views of the lake.

I took my Honey Stinger chew a little after mile 6, still feeling good, still amazing at how beautiful the area was. But I was also aware that the hill would be coming up soon, so I started to brace myself for it. It was also around this point that Lake Washington Blvd. turned into McGilvera Blvd, which we followed until we turned onto E. Galer.

Mile 5-9:23

Mile 6-9:26

And this is where it hurt. We hit a hill, and it was not fun. It kept going and going, and I kept wondering, is this the big hill everyone talked about? It has to be. But I had no idea what was in store for my poor, little legs.

Just part of the up! Photo cred: Google

Just part of the up! Photo: Google

We turned onto E. Madison, and the hill continued to go up, and up. But I kept my head up, turned my legs over and made it to the top somehow. For a moment I wasn’t sure how I’d keep going, but I did. And I was greeted by the Oiselle Cowbell Corner, a nice reward for the treacherous hills.

Survived the hill! Photo: Sarah H.

Survived the hill! Photo: Sarah H.

Mile 7-9:51

Mile 8-9:54

 

Madison wasn’t too memorable, just a bunch of houses and a main street. I suppose I was a bit tired from the hill, but even so my legs were feeling good and I didn’t want to stop. We continued along to Interlaken Blvd. and I was surprised with how green and lush everything looked.

We passed by the Japanese Garden and Washington Park, I couldn’t help by smile was we were surrounded by trees, the vibrant green just standing out from the slight fog that still lingered. It was about this point that I truly felt like this was exactly what I was hoping for. It was cool, crisp, foggy and the fog was in and out of the course. When I imagine Seattle, this is what I thought of.

I could run this every day. Photo: Google

I could run this every day. Photo: Google

Mile 9-9:13

Mile 10-10:05

At this point I knew I had a 5k left, and I knew it wouldn’t be as hard as the final stretch in some previous races. We made our way onto Boylston and headed back towards the city. My legs still felt strong, but I was reaching the point where I could probably stop for a quick port-a-potty moment. I thought about holding on until the finish, but every time we went downhill, I knew I should stop sooner than later.

I finally made the decision to stop, but it was occupied. Luckily a volunteer told me about one down the street, so I continued along to the next one. It was occupied as well, so I about two minutes waiting in two lines.

After, I felt much better, and we made our way back onto the Express Way towards the finish. I wanted to pick up the pace a bit, but not too much where I would be too worn out. However, I couldn’t help but get excited as we got turned onto the city streets, knowing the finish was close.

Mile 11-9:49

Mile 12-12:38 (bathroom stop)

The final mile seemed to take forever. We were winding through downtown, but since I wasn’t familiar with the area, I still wasn’t sure where we were. I kept checking my watch, thinking I should see the stadium, but it was nowhere to be seen.

It wasn’t until we actually passed the mile marker that I realized how far off my Garmin was. When we passed the marker, my watch was already at 13.19, no wonder that last mile took forever. But I knew I couldn’t give up, I had just .1 to go!

Mile 13-9:05

Coming into the finish

Coming into the finish

I rounded into the stadium and was taken aback at everything. I looked around the crowd and searched for my sister and Darren. I didn’t seen anyone, so I kept going and crossed the finish of my 24th half.

Last. .1-.2? 9:20 pace

Seattle Support Team!

Seattle Support Team!

Overall I really enjoyed this race, and honestly it was probably one of my top 10 favorites. I barely looked at my watch or checked my pace, instead I just enjoyed what I was doing. It was such a fun course that had a variety of views and areas around town, but was also a bit challenging with some of the hills. It was a bit chillier than I had hoped, but it turned out it was perfect weather and I felt like I had the complete Seattle experience.

Definitely not flat

Definitely not flat

The only thing I had an issue with was my Garmin and course length. My guess is that the tunnel may have skewed things a bit and that I may not have hit the tangents properly. But not big deal.

Race swag

Race swag

I highly recommend this race if you’re looking for a destination race. Everything was put on well, from the expo to the race to the finish/recovery area. I never had any issues, and don’t remember hearing any complaints. I will certainly be back out there to run it, as long as I have family in Seattle!

IMG_1314

 

Results:

Official Time: 2:10:36

Age Group 25-29: 201/444

Female: 1,115/2,678

Overall: 2,466/4/758

 

 

Weekly Fitness Recap

This was not your typical week. I spent part of my week in Ohio and part of it in Seattle, Washington. Thanks to the holiday, we were able to turn the long weekend into a mini vacation and visit my sister for Thanksgiving. I didn’t get as much running in as I had originally planned, but we did a lot of walking, including hiking a mountain!

Monday: 0
Tuesday: 3 Miles + Abs
Wednesday: 0
Thursday: 4.5 Miles Hiked + 3 Miles Walked
Friday: 7 Miles Walked
Saturday: 5 Miles Walked
Sunday: 13.39 Miles – Seattle Half Marathon + 4 Miles Walked
Total Miles: 16.39 Miles Run + 4.5 Miles Hiked + 19 Miles Walked
Tuesday I stuck to the treadmill and did an easy three miles. Like last week, every half mile I would up the speed. It certainly helped to make time go by quicker, but I’ll need to look into more treadmill workouts if I want to survive another winter. Any suggestions on treadmill workouts? I followed my run up with some ab work and a side of Cheez it Grooves. All about balance, right?

Thursday was our first full day in Seattle. Instead of running, we took the day to go hiking on Tiger Mountain. It was an absolutely beautiful day, completely clear of clouds. It was a steep hike at times, but the views were worth it.

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I’ll trade sidewalks for this view any day!

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Seriously? So much better than Turkey dinner.

We followed that up with an additional 3 miles of walking around the city. I typically don’t log my steps/miles walked, but wanted to keep track this week since we did a ton of walking around Seattle.

Friday I didn’t get a chance to run, I was pretty sore from the hike so I decided to take a rest day. We ended up with around 7 miles of walking in the city. I have to admit, I’m not used to so much walking, so my legs were getting tired, I even starting getting a few almost blisters on my feet. Vacation is hard sometimes 😉

On Saturday I had good intentions of running, but the lazy factor kicked in. We ended up walking 5 miles around the city, and checked out the race expo. By this time I was a bit nervous for Sunday’s race. I’d done barely any running all week and spent a ton of time on my feet. I felt like I was setting myself up for a disastrous race.

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Ready to race!

Sunday, I ran the Seattle Half Marathon. I’ll have a recap up later this week. It ended up being a great race, one that I highly recommend. It was also a lot hillier than I originally thought. And if that wasn’t enough, we walked (hobbled) an additional 4 miles.

Overall my running mileage was low for the week, but I walked a lot more than I typically do, I hiked 4.5 miles with 1,770 gain, and ran a hilly half marathon. It was an active week, but spread out among many activities.

Weekly Fitness Recap

Another week of running, and another week closer to the holidays. How are we already this close to Thanksgiving and Christmas? Wasn’t it just Labor Day Weekend?

This week my motivation wasn’t where it should have been. Darren was traveling in Europe all week, so my sleep was much lighter and I held up a good streak of being wide awake from 2:45-4:00am every day. With him traveling international every couple of weeks, I notice my energy and running dips. I need to figure out how to sleep better, and probably eat better while he’s gone.

 

Monday: 0

Tuesday: 0

Wednesday: 3 Miles + Abs

Thursday: 1 Mile

Friday: 0

Saturday: 6.15 Miles + Abs

Sunday: 0

Total Miles: 10.15 Miles

 

My first run of the week was on Wednesday. I stuck to the treadmill, mostly because I didn’t want to go out in the crazy wind just to head to the rec. To keep things entertaining, I upped the speed every half mile and time went by quickly. I stopped at three because I felt great, and didn’t want to end my run on a bad note. I’ll wait to endure those miserable treadmill runs at another time.

It's treadmill season!

It’s treadmill season!

Thursday was pretty much a waste of a run. I had a tight time slot before Grey’s night with Mallory, but still got on the treadmill. The entire mile I was thinking of everything I needed to get done by 8pm, so I stopped at one mile. Luckily, Grey’s is over until February, so I can go back to normal Thursday workouts. Poor excuse? Does anyone else still watch Grey’s?

Friday, I didn’t run, but I did get my hands on a new pair of Asics Kayano 22! Second Sole had their Holiday Extravaganza Sale, so I couldn’t help but stop in and try a pair on. It was love at first sight! I’m excited for the first run in these, especially since they’re less bulky than previous models!

Heaven in a box!

Heaven in a box!

Saturday, we had a group of 5 and met up on the square to do some miles around town. The weather was a bit chilly, but it didn’t stop us from a good run. We managed to keep a pretty steady pace of 9:05, a good amount of hills, and I felt great.

Post run delight!

Post run delight!

I should have gone for a longer run Sunday, but didn’t get to bed until 2am on Saturday night, so I passed on the early morning group. Instead, I relaxed, enjoyed time with Darren-since he was finally home, and put up my Christmas decorations! Some days you just need to spend some time with loved ones.

 

Weekly Fitness Recap

This week turned into a recovery week. I woke up pretty sore on Monday as a result from Sunday’s half marathon. Guess that means I worked for it, right? This meant I ended up taking the week a little easier than planned, especially towards the weekend when my body let me know it needed a break.

 

Monday: 0

Tuesday: 3 Miles

Wednesday: 0

Thursday: 5.5 Miles + Abs

Friday: 0

Saturday: 0

Sunday: 11 Miles + Abs

Total Miles: 19.5 Miles

 

I started this week with a treadmill run on Tuesday. My legs were still a bit stiff and with the weather, I really had no motivation to run outside in the dark. The first mile was a bit tough, but I eventually got in the groove. I ended up with three because despite Netflix, I was beyond bored. How did I ever run 10 on the treadmill?

Thursday I met up with Mallory and we were forced to head to the rec center. It actually wasn’t that bad because it was relatively empty. Time to take advantage of it now because that will change in about a month and a half. We spent most of our time on the indoor track, with a short stint on the treadmills. I followed it up with some ab work once I got home.

This weekend also did not go as planned. I ended up with a migraine on Friday morning, which completely derailed my day. Follow that up with insomnia from 1:30-4:30am and some back/kidney pain Saturday morning, my body decided that I was not running on Saturday.

But come Sunday, I was feeling great! I met up with a rather large group of MCRR and we headed to Hinckley for some trails. It’s been awhile since I’d run the trails, but it felt great to take a break from the roads. Even with the trails covered in leaves, I felt pretty stable throughout the run. We kept a decent pace, I fueled around 6 miles, and never had any leg pain that had previously been bothering me.

Hinckley Trails Group! photo credit: John

Hinckley Trails Group! photo credit: John

I was definitely a lot more worn out from the half marathon than I thought I’d be, so it was a good week to scale back a bit and recover. Just one more week of hard running, then another short taper and race day!