My Drive to Run…Week 2 of Wineglass Marathon Training

O.K., I’m going to be honest with you…..there are some days I just don’t FEEL like running.  Work and life can get in the way, my legs feel sore, the weather is too hot/cold/windy…., or I may just feel plain worn down.  Despite all of that, I still LOVE running and go out for a run most days.  In fact, even when I’m not running, I spend a lot of my time reading about, talking about, blogging about, or just day dreaming about running.  Does this make me driven or obsessed with my sport?  I’ve met enough people who despise running to know my behavior is not quite normal….yet, there are a lot of other runners out there just like me! (Many of you here on WordPress! I ❤ all of you nuts!!)  So what is it about running that makes makes it so addictive?  What obsesses ummm, drives me to run?

Image

1. My goals! When I ran my first race (The Baltimore Half Marathon in 2009) my goal was to dedicate 3 months to following a training plan and to simply finish the race.  Then I thought, I could do that twice, why not run a marathon? (FYI…In retrospect this logic was flawed, a marathon is NOT two half marathons!) Then after racing most distances, I wanted to start getting faster/stronger and was focused on achieving new PRs.  Last year I met my goal of breaking a 4 hour marathon.  Now my primary goal/obsession is to qualify for the Boston Marathon.  I love how running allows me to constantly set new goals, compete with myself, and push myself to get better.

Image

2. Running is cheaper than therapy.  This is one of my favorite quotes and it is soooo true for me!  I have a lot going on in my life, between taking care of my daughter, work, and commuting…and I have the tendency to get a BIT high strung at times and my daily runs “take the edge off”.  I don’t know how I would keep it all together without my running therapy!

3. Running makes me feel like a super hero! I love the feeling I get when I am running and competing in races.  It’s a great break from my normal daily grind.  The adrenaline from running a race and having complete strangers cheer me on is so cool! It’s like a Clark Kent to Superman transformation when this Mama/IT geek becomes Running Betty, “speeding” towards the finish line!

Image

4. Running allows me to explore and to connect with nature.  I’m an adventurous person by nature, and have always liked to explore new places.  I discovered I can cover a lot more ground, which=more exploration, when running.  Most of my runs are “out and backs” , with no planned route, so every run is like a new adventure!  I love exploring new parks/trails and running is my favorite way to site see when visiting a new city.  (I got to enjoy lots of beautiful mountain views running around the Denver, CO area the last 2 weeks)  I also like running with no music so I can take in the nature around me with ALL of my senses.

Image

 

5. I run because I can.  The ability to use my legs and run is a blessing that I never want to take for granted.  I want to have good memories to look back on if there is ever a point in my life that I can’t run anymore, and I want to be able to know I pushed myself and achieved everything I was capable of.  But until that day comes….as long as I am able to run, I will!

Image


Summary of Week 2 WG Marathon Training:

  • Monday- Rest
  • Tuesday- 6 miles easy
  • Wednesday- 8 miles speed work (400 meter repeats on track)
  • Thursday- Rest (Unplanned, unexpected 13 hour work day)
  • Friday- 6 miles easy
  • Saturday- Rest (Unplanned, traveling/home late)
  • Sunday– 10 miles easy on C&O canal, +1 mile trail running near home -Exploring new trails! 🙂

 

  • Total Weekly Miles: 31 miles (10 miles short of goal)
  • Total 2014 Miles: 774.35

Image

What about you?  How was your training week? What drives you to run?

Wineglass Marathon Training-Week 1

My first week of training for the WG Marathon was a bit of a challenge.  I was visiting Colorado; so acclimating to the high altitude and living out of a hotel was a wee bit disruptive to my normal routine.  I think the most difficult thing about training while traveling is eating out all the time.  I tried to make the healthiest food choices possible, but did not have 100% control over what was going into my food and did fall to temptation a couple of times by indulging in some super tasty local fare!  The almond butter and berry jam stuffed french toast that I ate at “The French Press” this morning after my long run was DEEEEE-LICIOUS!!!!!

french press

 

Overall, I was happy with week #1 of marathon training.  I got in all of my planned miles (Hanson’s Advanced Training Plan) and even got in a little bit of cross training.  (All though, I did not get in as much cross training as I would have liked this week.) Luckily, I decided to throw in an extra easy run early in the week because I ended up being in NO condition to run on Saturday.  I went to see a Skrillex concert at Red Rocks Friday night, and 1) Drank 3 vodka lemonades and 2) Was up past 1 am.  Since drinking and staying up past 10 pm is rare for me, my energy was totally zapped the next day.  What can I say, this girl can’t hang any more! Lol  The concert was AWESOME though! Such a cool experience!

Such Amazing Views!

Such Amazing Views!

I did manage to do some exploring on Saturday.  With a little hiking at “The Garden of the Gods” and a train ride to the top of Pike’s Peak.  Colorado is a beautiful place! I love the being out doorsy and active, and I’m a total mountain girl soooo it’s pretty much like heaven to me!

Cool rocks and mountain views!

Cool rocks and mountain views!


 

The run-down of WG Marathon Training (Week 1):

  1. Monday- 45 minutes elliptical trainer and 24 burpees
  2. Tuesday- 4 mile easy run, 25 burpees
  3. Wednesday– Rest (Planned)
  4. Thursday- 6 mile easy run
  5. Friday-6 miles easy run, 29 burpees
  6. Saturday– Rest (Unplanned)
  7. Sunday- 11 mile easy run
  • Total Weekly Miles: 27 miles
  • Total 2014 Miles: 743.35
*So True*

*So True*


 

Who else is training for a fall marathon? For the repeat offenders out there, what keeps you coming back for more? 😉 

Cross Training and Active Recovery

I decided to take a week off after NFC trail marathon so I could start my training for Wineglass Marathon this week on fresh legs.  I still did some cross training but did absolutely NO running for 7 days.  The first couple of days I felt a bit antsy, but ended up finding some other fun workouts to keep me moving.  I did my burpees for my “June burpee” challenge every day, did some core work, a kettle bell work out, and even got in my first swim in years!

ActiveRecovery


 

A quick summary of my “Rest” Week Workouts:

  • Monday-17 x burpees
  • Tuesday– 50 minutes spinner, ab ripper X, 18 x burpees
  • Wednesday-2 mile swim, 19 x burpees
  • Thursday-20 x burpees
  • Friday– 30 min stairclimber (2.82 miles), 21 x burpees, KB Workout (3 x 15 of each: KB Swings, Goblet Squats, Russian Twist)
  • Saturday- Ab Ripper X, 22 x burpees
  • Sunday-23 x burpees

burpees


I enjoyed my cross training last week, especially my swim!  I had this totally impulsive urge to go for a swim after work, so I threw on my bathing suit, grabbed my stuff, and headed to the aquatic center 15 minutes from my house.  I planned on swimming 1 mile then calling it a day.  But by some serendipitous coincidence, the masters swim team was just starting their practice when I arrived at the pool.  After talking to the coaches, they agreed to let me have a 2 week free trial to decide if I wanted to join.

They gave me some great tips/pointers…my rusting is VERY rusty and my form was a little whacky.  They got me straight on freestyle and after about 30 minutes of focusing on “reaching forward” and “finishing my stroke”, I felt like a fish back in water, and was reminded of why the pool used to be my happy place!  I wasn’t breaking any records, it took me about an hour and a half to complete the 3200 meter workout, but it honestly felt great! I am hoping to find time to fit a couple of swims a week into my fitness routine.

I so relate to Dory!

I so relate to Dory!


 

My Kettle Bell Exercises :

I totally love the quick, dynamic, total body workouts I can get with my 20 lb kettle bell!

KB Swing

KB Swing

Goblet Squat

Goblet Squat

Russian Twist

Russian Twist


 

I’ve started week one of training for WG.  The first week starts out pretty easy, but that’s a good thing since I am traveling for work.  I have a lot of work travel scheduled for the summer (7 weeks between now and labor day on the road) so I am a little anxious about how it will affect the consistency and quality of my training.  My next post will include tips on staying on track with workouts and diet while traveling.  Staying on top of training while on the road is a challenge, that’s for sure!!

How much time do you usually take off of running after a marathon?  What are your favorite workouts/activities for “active recovery”?  Any tips for staying on training while traveling?  

loto

Random Summer Stuff that I Love, Love, Love!!!!

Summer is really starting to heat up and I’m loving it! Even growing up in San Antonio, Summer has always been my favorite season! I like  hot sunny days, cook outs, lounging by a pool with a margarita, and playing the song “Summer Loving” from Grease (Possibly one of the greatest movies ever) playing on repeat! 😉

Summerloving

Aside from a few disgustingly humid days, the Maryland running weather has been PERFECT!  I feel bulky, awkward, and restricted when running in cold weather layers and I get excited  about shopping new summer running outfits in the same way that college girls get excited about shopping for their summer bikinis!  (Because lets face it, bikini shopping looses SOME of it’s appeal as getting older and having babies makes our stomachs a little softer!)  While some things look cute and feel comfortable in a dressing room; a few SWASSY runs will uncover little imperfections that can cause overheating, pinching, chaffing, and sad faces.   After giving everything a try, I’ve found a few new favorites that have become the regulars in my running wardrobe!

 

  • Saucony Kinvara 4 (A minimalist(ish) Running Shoe): For the last year I have been focusing on my running form, and have been practicing elements of Chi Running.  I wanted to give minimalist running shoes a try based on the theory that running in a shoe with a lower heel to toe drop mimics barefoot running and will lead to a more natural stride.  There are people with very strong opinions on both side of this camp, and I don’t think the minimalist movement is for everyone. Even if it is something that you want to give a try, transitioning to a minimalist running shoes should be gradual and approached with caution.  The Kinvara is a light (6.7 ounces), performance neutral shoe with only a 4 mm heel to toe drop. The first time I wore theses shoes for a short, easy run they felt light and fast, but my calves ached by the end of my run.  I slowly worked the Kinarvas into my regular rotation, wearing them only for short runs (Up to 6 miles) for the first month.  It took a couple of runs to get used to them, but now I am absolutely in LOVE with them!!  So much so that I don’t even want to wear my “stability shoes”, Asics GT-2000s, because they feel too heavy/bulky and make my feet hurt.  My Asics are now only reserved for my longest runs (Over 10 miles).  I even wore my Kinvaras for my last race, The Annapolis Zooma Half Marathon.  These are hands down my favorite shoes, EVER!  I have never been so in love with a pair of running shoes! Oh, and the fact that the are “Obnoxious Neon Yellow” is definitely a plus! ❤
My New Loves!! <3

My New Loves!! ❤

 

  • Injinji Lightweight No Show Toe Socks (In pink of course!!): Summer heat=sweaty feet and funky toes!!  All of my running socks were in a sad state; super dingy with holes in the toes…Sooooo it was time to restock!  I decided to buy a few different brands, to see what I liked.  For the hot weather, the Injinjis are my favorite! They allow my feet to breathe and prevent rubbing/blistering between the toes.  I ended up going back and buying a couple more pairs.  All in pink! 😉
Pink!!

Pink!!

 

  • Nike Rival Stretch Running Skirt (Super comfy and stylish!): Running skirts have been my favorite for running in the heat for a while…Loose running shorts chafe the inside of my thighs (and lady parts), while fitted running shorts have the tendency to ride up to the point of exposing butt cheek! (Tall girl problems!)  I love running skirts, because the built in compression shorts are comfy and prevent painful chaffing, while the skirt provides me with a little extra coverage to keep me reasonably decent during my runs/races.  Plus, they are super cute and stylish! When I found this Nike running skirt, I was so excited by all of the color options it came in! It was soooo hard to decide on one! O.K., it ended up being two!   And I love the ties on the side that allow you to cinch up the skirt a bit to show off the cute compression shorts underneath.  I have one in lime green with black shorts, and one in hot pink with pink leopard shorts!!  I want to buy ALL the colors! Stupid bills! 😉
Run like a girl!

Run like a girl!

 

  • Under Armour Fly By Stretch Mesh Tank Top: Most of my running shirts are some variation of under armour’s racer back style tank top.   I like that they have good air flow, keep me cool, let my colorful sports bras peak out, and don’t chaff my arm pits!  When I ordered this mesh tank top, I was surprised by how light weight and breezy it was! And again, comes in a gazillion adorable colors!  My new favorite summer running top! 🙂

tank

 

 

  • NUUN and Coconut Water for Hydration: Ok, so yes…this has absolutely nothing to do with my summer running wardrobe but I thought I’d throw it in there…Because…Staying hydrated is especially important when training during the summer! I’ll be honest….I HATE drinking water so I have trick myself (like a kid) into drinking enough daily water.  I’ve been making ice-cubes out of coconut water and throwing the cubes into my water bottle to add a little extra, refreshing flavor.  I also add NUUN tablets to my normal water when working out during the hotter parts of the day.  I love the cherry limeade and pink lemonade flavors the best!
Ahhhhhh!!! So summery, like a pina colada!

Ahhhhhh!!! So summery, like a pina colada!


 

I wasn’t paid (or even asked! Lol) to review any of these products.  All my opinions, and excitement about these things is 100% me and 100% genuine!  There’s always a lot of trial and error in running so I wanted to share my excitement about my new favorite running stuff and about summer in general!  I hope you all are having a fantastic summer and are enjoying training in the heat too!

What is some of your favorite summer running gear?  Do you drink your water plain, or do you like it with a twist like me?

 

 

 

 

 

My First Trail Marathon and A Solid Training Week!

I hope everyone had a fantastic weekend! I had a blast! Yesterday I ran the North Face Challenge Trail Marathon at  Algonkian Regional Park, just outside of D.C. I can count the number of trail runs I’ve done in my entire life on one hand…..So how did I end up signed up for this race?  I work with an awesome group of runners, all guys so there is a lot of trash talking involved.  Last year they ran the NFC Half Marathon, and a few of them said they were going to take on the full this year.  Of course I wasn’t going to let a group of men outdo me, so I signed up for the marathon the day the registration opened, throwing down the gauntlet.  😉  I had no idea how I’d do, I was just hoping to be able to finish within the 7 hour time limit.  I was excited to try something different from my normal road races and wanted to take on a new challenge.  Long story short, a couple of my co-workers signed up for the half but a week before my race I knew I would be running the marathon solo.  I considered changing to the half but I had 1) Gotten myself way too hyped about running the full, 2) Have been running high enough mileage that I thought I had a decent chance of surviving this race, and 3) I am too damn stubborn once my mind is made up about something.  😉  Still, I was nervous enough about this race that I didn’t talk much about it before hand.  I didn’t want to come off as a drama queen talking about how scared I was that I might get lost in the woods, be bitten by a snake, fall into a ditch, break a leg….list of irrational pre-race fears goes on and on! Lol Obviously I survived, and am in good enough shape to be blogging about it the next day!

Early morning, leaving for the race.

Early morning, leaving for the race.

 

The race was well organized, with race day packet pick-up available.  I  was SO thankful that I didn’t have to drive into D.C. during the work week, in rush hour traffic, to pick up my number.  I parked, shuttled to the park, and checked in with plenty of time to spare (45 minutes) before the 9 am marathon start time.  I wandered around talking to strangers, one of my all time favorite things to do! 😉  The other runners at this race were so friendly and super supportive when I told them this was my first trail race.  I had zero expectations so this was the first race I’ve ran in a while that I didn’t put pressure on myself.  My primary goal was to have fun and finish uninjured.  While it wasn’t really a goal, I told myself if I could run this race under 5 hours I’d be ecstatic!

I learned very quickly that Garmins are very inaccurate when calculating distance and pace on a trail.  I didn’t even pay attention to my watch, and I just ran by feel.  The trails included a lot of single track paths, rocks, stream crossings, mud, tree roots, and steep hills.  I felt like a gazelle hurdling over a few fallen trees within the first 5 miles of the race (I was NOT hurdling them on the way back though! Lol).  There were a couple of points during the race that were too steep for me to run; I walked while grabbing onto trees to keep my balance.  The race support was amazing, with some of the best aid stations I’ve ever seen on any race.  Each aid station had big bowls of food including; fruit, pretzels, shot blocks, gels, candy, peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, chicken broth….And plenty of fluids.  They even had volunteers offering water refills, which was useful since there is an 8 mile stretch during this race that is totally unsupported.  I had to run with a camel pack, which I should have tried out before hand, because OH. MY. GOD. THE. CHAFFING!!!! It seriously looks like I had a zombie chewing on my collar bone, shoulders, and back! I’ll live though, and know better for next time!  (However my boyfriend did ask me to wear my hair down this week! Lol)  Oh, and when I said I took my time….I REALLY took my time, stopping to take pictures of the beautiful park scenery and to take mid-race selfies!

Race Photos from on the trail.

Race Photos from on the trail.

After getting past the half way turn around, I was so glad I did take my time because let me tell you something….trail running is tough!! As my legs started to fatigue, keeping my balance and footing on the varying terrain became REALLY difficult.  No more leaping through the air like a ballerina, flying over logs…I was just focused on keeping myself upright and moving forward.  About a mile after the turn around, I made a new friend! We kept each other motivated and chatted about life for the next 10+ miles.  It was her first marathon and she was a beast! At the last aid station, about 1.6 miles from the finish she had more left in her legs than I did, so I told her not to wait on me, that I was going to stop at that last aid station to regroup, and I’d meet her at the finish line.  She ended up coming in second in her age division!!  She totally rocks and is one of my new running BFFs!! I ended up finishing the race in 4:47:45! Yay, I finished the race, feeling strong, in under 5 hours! *Happy Dance*

Muddy, happy, and relaxing at the finish line!

Muddy, happy, and relaxing at the finish line!


 

After the NFC, I am totally hooked on trail running! Why?  Here are the few things NFC taught me about trail running;

  • Trail running forces/allows me to be moment.  I was literally focused on every step I took and what was right in front of me!
  • Being in nature is inspiring! I stopped a few times to take in the sites, smells, and sounds of everything around me!
  • Variation!  The constantly changing terrain kept things interesting, and kept me challenged and focused.  I completely lost track of time during this race!
  • My competitive side got to take a break….I’ve heard trail runners say, “Don’t bring your ego on the trail!” Now I know first hand what they mean! The trail was unpredictable and keeping my balance required me to run much slower than I would normally run.  Also, since Garmins don’t work well on the trail any way, I had no idea how fast I was running and was not focused or worried about my pace.
  • Hydration and Fuel is Key! I learned a lot about fueling and hydrating during a race.  I was drinking water throughout the entire race and fueling up on peanut butter (in reusable camping tube), cliff shot blocks, and orange slices (from fueling stations).  My energy levels were high and I felt great!
  • Trail running is easier on my legs.  Usually for a day or two after a marathon my legs feel destroyed and I’m walking with my “marathon limp”.  I do feel tired today, but my legs don’t hurt AT ALL!
  • The other runners! Trail runners are some of the nicest people I’ve ever met! This race wasn’t overly competitive and everyone was running at a conversational pace.  We ran in packs for miles; joking, laughing, and motivating each other.  And as I mentioned before, I made a new running BFF! 🙂

Not only did I have a great race, I had a great week of training.  I didn’t even slack on my cross training this week, like I normally do! 😉

Recap of this weeks training:

-Monday: Ab Ripper X, 10 x burpees, 10 minute AM yoga routine.

-Tuesday: 6 mile tempo run (7:59 AP), TRX workout (3×15 each Chest press, Low-Row, Skull crushers, One arm bicep Curl) 11 x burpees.

-Wednesday: 8 mile track work out (Including 12×400 Repeats), Ab ripper X, 12 x burpees.

-Thursday: 6 miles easy, TRX workout (Same as Tuesday), 13 x burpees.

-Friday: Rest Day.  14 x burpees.

-Saturday: NFC Trail Marathon (26.2 miles)

-Sunday: 2 mile easy recovery run, Ab ripper X, 16 x burpees.

 

  • Total Weekly Miles: 48.2
  • Total 2014 Miles: 716.35

Another training cycle starts soon!! I’ll be starting Hanson’s 18 week Advanced Marathon Training Program in One Week!!!


Have you ever tried trail running? What do you love about trail running?

 

 

 

 

 

 

A New Speed Workout for National Running Day

national running day

Happy National Running Day to all my fellow runners and blogging friends! I’ve been reading “Hansons Marathon Method: A Renegade Path To Your Fastest Marathon”.  I plan to follow the training methods and plan from this book for the Wineglass Marathon.  (Training starts up again in just 2 more weeks!) One thing I have struggled on in my last few races is my pacing.  I am getting faster, but I have let that lead to overconfidence, and “going out too fast”, instead of sticking to my planned pace.  One thing Hanson talks about in his book is sticking to “prescribed pace” for each and EVERY workout.  Based on my marathon goal time (3:30), my prescribed pace for easy running (warm-ups, cool down, recovery, and easy runs) is 8:59-9:59.  It is hard for me to hold back that much when I am running, but he gets into physiology of marathon running and why running slow for 49% of your total mileage pays off on race day.  He also talks about why it is important to be able to run consistent pace for an entire run.  Who am I to argue with an expert! 😉 So I’m going to give it a try….

Today I tried a new speed work out from Hanson’s book; 12 x 400 at prescribed pace (1:45) with 400 meters recovery between each repeat (+ a one mile warm-up and cool-down for a total of 8 miles).  Hanson makes his runners do push-ups when they do not run their prescribed pace for each repeat; he joked about how he wouldn’t make the readers do push-ups… However, I thought the push-ups were a great idea! I am the first to admit that I HATE push-ups and what better reinforcement/motivation for me to learn to run a consistent pace!  For every second I was off my pace for a repeat, I did 1 push-up.  I ended up doing 11 push-ups total; 4 for running my warm-up too fast and the other 6 for “over running” my repeats.  I’m a fast learner when push-ups are involved (flash backs to my days of bootcamp! Lol), my last 5 repeats were 1:45 on the dot! It did feel like I was holding back for the first 8, but the last 4 repeats were challenging.

4.-Drop-down-and-give-me-20-300x225

In addition to my normal running, I have started a “burpee challenge” with my boyfriend and some of our friends.  You start out with 1 burpee, and add one a day for a year until you get to 365 burpees.  I joined the challenge late, so I only did 12 today while Danny did 71! Ouch!  Burpees are a standard exercise in cross-fit work-outs and they hit most of your major muscle groups! We’ll see how far I get, I have a feeling I may decide to hang-out around 50 when I get there! 😉

Burpee

Burpee

 

Anyone want to join the burpee challenge? How did you celebrate your National Running Day? 🙂

runningisagift

Zooma Half Marathon (PR!) and Other Training News

Saturday I ran the Zooma Half Marathon in Annapolis.  I signed up for this race last minute, since it’s right around the corner from where I live and I wanted to get a Spring half marathon under my belt for this year.  I’ve been focused on my marathon for the last year, but the half has always been my favorite distance to race.  I don’t have to at “puke inducing turbo” speeds like a 5K/10K and I’m finished before hitting the dreaded leg crushing wall.

I loved the race; it was well organized and had such a positive atmosphere.  A majority of the runners were women and I love how female athletes encourage and support each other.  They also had an option to have your race packet mailed to you, which I took advantage of since making it to a packet pick-up during the work week (I’m a commuter with lots of after school activities to take my daughter to) can be a stressful experience for me.  I think all races should have either a mail or same day packet pick-up option so you don’t have to make an additional trip.  The swag was awesome!  In addition to an awesome race shirt, tech tee in an adorable baby blue color, I got a new running hat (Hats are a necessity for this fair skinned gal!) and new feeture running socks (one of my favorite brands of running socks!)

It was a beautiful day (perfect racing weather) and the race location was fantastic, starting and finishing near the Naval Academy Stadium.  There were plenty of porta potties so the lines weren’t bad before the race.  There were just over 900 half marathon runners and the 10K and half started together (then merged again a few miles before the finish line).  I had a good start to the race; running just under 7 minutes for my first two miles before settling in at my goal pace of 7:20.  For the first 5 miles, I was running with the “lead pack” of females and was enjoying the fast/flat route through down town Annapolis.  The crowd support was good, and there were water stations every 2 miles.

Just after mile 5, we started to climb a steep bridge.  This is where the other girls started to pull away from me.  Unfortunately, the bridge took a lot out of me and I struggled on the rolling hills that followed for the next 4 miles.  I let myself get discouraged, and mentally almost gave up during this portion of the race.  I’m embarrassed to admit I let myself get in my head during this part of the race, and my attitude was terrible! I finally told myself (I talk to myself a lot when I run! Lol), “Snap out of it Woman!!! So you had a few bad miles out of 13.1 miles! Don’t give up on all of them!” Then I kicked my butt back into gear.  The 1:40 pacer caught up with me with about 2 miles left to go, and I pushed myself to keep up with him (and the two runners pacing with him).  They were amazingly encouraging and helped me get through the final 2 miles.  I did my best to stay with them for the final stretch, but they pulled away a bit the last half mile.  I kept them in my sites and was watching my Garmin.  At 13 miles I was just under 1:38 so I thought I was going to run my first sub-1:40 half.  At 13.1, my watch was at 1:39:30 and I still didn’t see the finish line.  “Shoot!” I ran as hard as I could for the final stretch of the race.  I ended up finishing in 1:40:26 (A new PR by just over a minute) and I found out later I was 4th in my division.

I was happy that I was able to get it together and finish my race strong with a new PR.  But also disappointed that I was SO close to my goal of breaking 1:40 and SO close to getting a division award.  I normally would have been ecstatic with my time (and a new PR) but I knew that I could have ran the race better than I did if I hadn’t mentally thrown in the towel for 4 miles of the race.  However, I am NOT feeling sorry for myself and am focusing on all of the positives of this race.  I am treating this as a learning experience.  The #1 thing I need to focus on for the next race is to maintain mental strength and a positive attitude when I am racing, regardless of what curve balls are thrown at me (http://running.competitor.com/2014/02/training/7-traits-of-mentally-tough-runners_68365).  In my training I also need to focus on more hill training (hills have been slowing my pace down over a minute per mile in my last few races) and my nutrition (I need to cut out some sweets and sodas and try to eat and hydrate like an athlete!).

After my half marathon.

After my half marathon.

Bottom line; I LOVE the Zooma Race series, if there is a race in your area it is totally worth checking out!!

http://www.zoomarun.com


The rest of my training for the week went well.

Weekly Run Down:

  • Monday- TRX work-out, Ab ripper X, Bryan Kest Power Yoga
  • Tuesday– 5 Mile Trail Run (@10:30 pace)
  • Wednesday-6 miles (@8:10 AP)
  • Thursday-Rest
  • Friday- Run 2 miles (8:30 pace on treadmill)
  • Saturday-Zooma Half Marathon, 13.25 (1:40:36, 7:36 AP)
  • Sunday– 7.1 miles Davidsonville Park (8:59 AP)

Total Weekly Miles: 33.35

Total 2014 Miles: 668.15


What is your favorite distance to race?  What advice do you have for staying mentally strong when competing?