May the wind stay at my back and may angels give me wings to fly.

I started avidly running in April of 2007, 8 weeks after my little boy was born. I was only running about 15 miles a week just to lose baby weight but a friend of mine was thinking of running the Honolulu Marathon. I made the bold move of doing it with her with the simple goal of just to finish. I finished my first marathon in 2008 with a time of 5:13. In 2009 I started running more miles, up to 40 a week when my schedule would allow that much. I signed up for my second Honolulu marathon and finished with a time of 4:48. That was with only 6 weeks of training, two of them being taper weeks. I finished with tears of joy and one other thing, the strong desire to run every runner's dream...BOSTON! I have some real good days and some real bad days but I hope someone finds inspiration in my spirit and strength. If you dig deep enough you will find the strength to do whatever your heart desires. "Don't follow your dreams...CHASE THEM!"

Sunday, December 26, 2010


So the past week has been a week of recovery for me for both body and mind. I had one heck of a semester this fall with college, kids school functions, marathon prep, stress of moving and a bit more. Although we have no moved yet, we will be by the end of January after we hear back about bids on houses.

As for my training, and yes, to me I am always training, I needed to stop for a week to just let my body and mind completely relax and recharge. As much as I wanted to get out, I just couldn't. I was napping every day without choice. I needed it badly. So now that I am recharged, I headed back out today with the intention of doing 5 miles. Instead, I made up my mind to do 6 and get some hillwork worked in. I am taking off from running until March 1st and power-walking instead to keep myself in shape and to keep the hips going. It's killing me not to run so I'm walking as fast as I can without actually running. I must look pretty silly but who cares! It does make me feel good and to pass the time I think about what I need to get back into order with my training. My nutrition has been lacking, or I should say, has been bad with the holidays around. But, I am back on track as of this week. I've cut out my breads and sweets again to get myself lean again like I was in the summer. Eating my protein and veggie packed meals and healthy snacks. This past week I've already lost half an inch in my hips and waist so I'm feeling better about myself already. I only want to lose an inch more in my hips and I will be happy. I don't think it will take me very long to get there either, a month maybe.

I have 3 marathons I want to do next year and the first one is in June. That being said and knowing I have to hold off on running for a bit means I really have to stick to the walking and get miles in as best I can so that once I start running again it won't be hard for me to get my speed or endurance back. I have a great coach. I also think that after what I went through for this year's marathon, my husband has a new found respect for me and what I love to do. I can't count how many times he has told me how proud he was of me for doing what I did with the injury.

So, here's to a new year with hopes and dreams.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Body against spirit

Well, this was not the marathon I was wanting this year at all BUT, I am very grateful to have finished it. After having a great summer of training towards a Boston qual, I ended up with plantar fasciitis and then a nasty lower back muscle spasm. Both of which knocked me out of the streets for about10 weeks leaving me 5 weeks to prepare for my 26.6 mile quest. My mileage was cut down drastically to one run a week then a long run on the weekend. I managed to squeeze in one 20 mile run on Thanksgiving weekend very successfully and with no problems. Two weeks before race day I had mentally come to terms that a finish was what I needed to focus on, not speed, for now. I had my strategy and was hoping for at least a 4:30 finish.

I woke up today at 2am and was at the race site by 4am and took my time making bathroom stops, stretching, and relaxing before line up time. The weather turned out for the best for us today too. The rain cleared and the roads were dry and the sun looked beautiful coming up by Diamond Head. I told myself to just enjoy the race and nothing else. I started running and had absolutely no pain in my heel for the first 11 miles but then it started. I kept pace as long as I could stopping only at aid stations to drink and walk through them. Mile 13 I had Bon Jovi blaring "halfway there..." Ha! Unfortunately the firey pain started to get worse in my foot and I found myself having to walk more frequently but still managing pace. Mile 15-16 it became even worse and my left leg and foot were now taking the slack and they started to feel pain. At that point I just kept telling myself that I will not quit. If I can walk then I can finish. So I had to think of something to ease my pains so I started motivating others and at times that provoked me to run again. My foot collapsed on me about 3 times the last 7 miles so I sat for a minute then got up and continued on. Tears were flowing for a couple reasons, pain, not having a finish that I wanted, and that finish being my worst one. However, it still did not defeat my spirit and the last half mile I literally gimped my way to the finish but tried to cover it up as much as possible, lol!
The marathon spirit was strong with me today as I ran. It is my last marathon here in Hawaii but all three have been an amazing experience.
Now it is time to put my running shoes away for 2-3 months to let my PF heal then it will be time to start working on that Boston qual again. I have my eyes set on 3 marathons next year if time allows for me. They are all part of the Rock n' Roll series, San Diego, LA, and Vegas! This year just was not my time for a BQ and I've accepted that. So with much needed healing time I will come back strong and continue my quest for a shot at Boston.
To my Dailymile friends, thank you for believing in me even when I didn't believe in myself. Mickey, thank you for standing by me and my decision to run and being a great coach all along the way. To my friends here in Hawaii, thank you for supporting me and believing in me as well.

God Bless and here's to recovery!

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

11 days, 8 hours, 33 minutes...

It's been a long while since I've made a post but it's also been a tough training season for me this fall. I was doing great in the summer in training to qualify for Boston this December and had even ran a 13 miler faster than I needed to with a 8:28 pace. However, as many of you know, life catches up with you sometimes and for me, it did. I had been running with plantar fasciitis over the summer without realizing what it was but once I was diagnosed I gave it a couple weeks to ease up. So that meant no running but I did cycle and do my strength training in the meantime. Then the mother of all pains hit me a week after I started running again, a lower back muscle spasm that was quite intense in pain level that left me on muscle relaxers for a couple weeks just so that I could function. I ended up not running for several weeks, basically all of September and October. I was fully healed by November 7th and I got to work immediately on running with only 5 weeks to get some long runs in. The PF still present might I add. I had to keep my mileage way down from what it was over the summer so I basically did a small run once during the week, cycled the other days, and did one long run on the weekend. My cardio has not had the time to get back up to par like it was in the summer but I can still run the distance, just not at the pace I wanted to. So this year, no BQ, but still a gift from God to allow me to run at all on December 12th. I refused to back out. It's the one race every year I look forward to running and that's the marathon. As a mother, wife, and college student, I don't have as many chances to run a lot of races like I would like to. So the marathon means a lot to me. Plus, it's my last one here in Hawaii so I'm rather nostalgic about the whole thing this time. I have had some crazy ups and downs but grateful to my coach, Mickey, and to God, my ups have always brought me up to the highest point of confidence in myself.

Boston will be mine one day, God just told me I have to wait a little longer and I accept that.

God's speed

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Fighting against the odds

So this week I attempted some running. 6 miles one day, then 4 on Friday and 10 today. The 6 and 4 were not bad and neither was the 10 but I can feel the pain coming back in my heel. I ran today a little nervous because yesterday I had shooting pain a few times while I was sitting down. Today I went out strictly for endurance and survival purposes. At mile 2.5 I felt the pain and told myself that I would stop if it happened again but it didn't, so I kept on going for my 10. It felt great to run again and it was a comfortable run no pain or stride being off due to my heel. However, I am doing A LOT of icing to control pain. That being said, I will be visiting with the doctor this week to see what he says (not that I'll listen much I'm sure). I'm not one for going to the doctor anyway and if he tells me to not run for a long time I'm debating when to laugh, before or after I leave the office.

My marathon is in December and it is my last one here in Hawaii and I would hate to bow out. So I figure I will be fighting the odds again this year just like I did last year due to dehydration from medicine. I guess if I get sick I'll just avoid the medicine so I'm at least hydrated and just worry about the PF. ;) I will have to focus on cycling to help keep my cardio in check and pray that I can pull off a long run on weekends and ice the foot the whole week. I know it takes a very long time for PF to heal so I'm hoping to push through enough training to carry me 26.2 miles. I can rest afterwards and I'm sure I will need it after this.

Telling a runner not to run is like telling a baby not to crawl, we do it anyway because we love the adventure it brings us.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Rough road

It's been awhile since my last post and much has happened and "not" happened. School is back in session and keeping me busy as usual as it must. Afterall, knowledge is power. In relation to running though, I'm afraid a BQ will not be in my sights this December unless I pull off some crazy training between now and then which is unlikely due to having plantar fasciitis in my right heel. It was bothering me for some time but I did not know that's what it was until a few weeks ago. So running has tapered but i'm slowly getting back into it this week and so far so good. My month of August and September were tough with some added stress at school. That has been eliminated though and worked out for the best. I had 2 weeks of crazy studying to catch up on other classes, so again, training was halted. For me, my education has to come before running and my family comes before all else.

Now that I am back into the swing of things though I feel so much better and after the past 2 days of running, although short mileage, still has my hopes up for maybe at least a sub 4 marathon this year. If not sub 4 I feel confident that I can do 4:30. I had some great training and cross-training over the summer and I have continued to strength train with weights at the gym and I feel my legs getting stronger each week. At the beginning of my weight training I was pressing 135 on the leg press and I am up to 195 now. That hopefully will increase to 215 in a couple weeks. When I have to take time off from running to allow my PF to subside, I cycle. I'm hoping that after a long run this weekend that I will still be pain free the morning after the run. I ice my heel 3-4 times a day for 30-60 minutes at a time. Basically, any chance I get. I also bought inserts for my running shoes and normal walking sneakers. So far so good. There is still discomfort at times but no limping and it never hurts while running (thank goodness).

The trick for me now is to get the time on feet and get some nice long runs in for endurance and get my cardio conditioning built back up. I'm hoping I can do this within the next 8 weeks. I have a lot to focus on these days, family, moving mid-January, starting to study for MCAT's, college, and soon volunteering my time at hospitals to increase my chances of med school acceptance. A lot on my plate and one heck of a balancing act. However, I know with the support of everyone in my life and most of all, God's help, I can do all these things and excel. I have the two most important reasons in my life to succeed in all that I do, my children.

Until next time, keep the feet kicking high and love life on the road/trail, whatever your fancy!

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Back from quad healing time

So this week was my first week back from taking some time off to let my right quad have some rest time. I had a pinch that wouldn't quit so I just worked on upper body and core for two weeks. I logged 64 miles this week, 29 of them running, rest cycling. I had to keep the mileage low this week to ease back into the groove of things. After the antsy time off I was happy to get back into a routine. School starts for me the 23rd so my running days are only Tues, Thurs, Sat, and Sundays now with long runs on Sunday. Crosstraining will be Tues and Thurs at the gym after I do my morning run of speedwork on those two days. I'm going to have a hectic schedule this semester so I hold my body and mind hold up.

I've started taking a vitamin to help out, B complex with Vit C and it seems to have helped by keeping me from having the need for a nap. I've also made my own mix of smoothie since the store bought ones tend to turn my stomach. I use 2 bananas, ice, some apple juice, and dumped 1 1/2 scoops of whey and a scoop of my recoverite in it. Tastes great and it makes about 24 oz so I drink the whole thing.

My pace at the beginning of the week was a cautious one hanging around the 9-9:30 range but by Thursday I was off like a prom dress again. Saturday I had my best 5 miles ever with an avg pace of 8:22. My long run though still needs work. The pace is there but I have to get my body used to it so I can stop the breaks. It weighs on my mind for race day but I still have 4 months to go so I'm not getting too mental about it. Instead, I'm trying to figure out how to overcome it. Today's long run was short by 3 miles but still went well, avg pace 8:30, but...with 4 breaks. That's not going to take me to a BQ... not unless I can keep cooking along at that pace. Just something I have to work on. I get to start strength training for my legs again this Thursday so hopefully after a couple weeks I will notice less stopping.

Other than that I'm doing pretty good and staying on top of my core workouts. My planks are just over 3 minutes now and I always hold the position to see how much longer I can handle it. I made it to 3:30 once. Yoga is working nicely for me. I enjoy it and the way it makes my muscles feel after a run or at the end of my day is nice. A nice good stretch for me.

Tomorrow I get a nice med deep tissue massage that my body is in much need of and I cannot wait! I haven't had one since my groin injury last year! My muscles will be thanking me, well, until I have to do Fartleks on Tuesday morning...

Overall, successful week, now on to the next one and hopefully better!

I live. I dream. I run.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

2 week update

It's been a couple weeks since my last post mainly due to a horrid hormonal week that left me full of lead when running. This week I did all my run except for Friday due to a very sore right quad from lunges.

Anyway, I'll skip the hormonal week because nothing good EVER happens that week. I just run what my body will allow. However, this past week was okay but could have been better. My fartleks went really well and for the first time I extended the intervals to 6 minutes. THAT was hard! My goal for fast pace is always to be a full minute below MGP which is 8:35, so I aim for a 7-8 range on fartleks. This week, I did it! Even for the 6 minute interval! Grant it I thought my legs would fall off, but hey, that will get better in time. :) This weeks long run was a little tough though, not sure why yet. It was hot even before the sun came up and I didn't take an endurolyte. I didn't have my garmin working so I had no idea of my pace. My first 8 miles were great but I may have been going too fast because I started to fizzle...then my legs started to tighten up and the last 3 miles I had a side stitch again and had to stop and go. It just wouldn't go away this time.

I've been a little shakey on confidence again about qualifying for Boston in December but I think that is due to just a bad 2 weeks of running. Some things I just can't control but I need to get my spunk back into my runs. That needs to happen this next week. That WILL happen this next week. I've broken through to my marathon pace now I have to work hard to extend the miles with it. Hard and tough for me but I'm far from being a quitter and will push my body as hard as it can go. Slacking off is not an option and neither is quitting. Time to shove off the bad runs again and focus on what I know I can do!

This next week will be a no fail week.

May God give me speed, strength, and endurance!

Sunday, July 4, 2010

My highest mileage week ever!

So this past week was intimidating a little because I have never ran 56 miles in 6 days. The most I've done is 42. I just took it day by day, massaged, ate well, and rested while I could. I had to do 2 TM runs, one 10 miler and one 8 miler fartleks. Both a bit boring for me but I did it. I had speedwork pretty much all week so by the time I had Friday's fartleks I had to walk out the last quarter mile but my fast pace was pretty good, 7:15-8:30, slow pace 9:30. I welcomed a leisurely 4 mile run Saturday although I had considered not running it. I'm glad I did though. I had a goal for the week and I wanted to met it. Today's long run was a little tougher than last weekend because I had a lot of miles on my feet already and I was not really mentally ready. I decided to mind trick myself into thinking the run wasn't 16 miles but that meant running up a 2 mile incline. The last 4 miles was run/walk and the last mile was an all out walk due to right hamstring discomfort. Luckily all is better now after an ice bath and shower. I did well the other days with my running and held my MP when I had to and made sure to take it easy on runs that I was told to.

My nutrition has improved with an increase in protein, more fruit, and more raw veggies. My weight has stayed the same but my measurements have decreased. However, the weight stabilization could be due to the increase muscle in my quads and hamstrings that are noticeable now. Yay!

Another week = a week of success. Next week a little less mileage and a little easier with the pace to give the legs a break. It's going to be another good month! Last month I logged 148 miles, my most in a month ever. I look forward to July!

I live. I dream. I run.

Saturday, June 26, 2010

"Livin on a Prayer"

I titled this week such because that song happened to be playing my last mile today. Mile 13, "halfway there" to a BQ. Last weekend was one with self doubt but I had set my mind to go with my heart for this week. Well, it worked. My brain and legs are finally working together in the same direction--speed! Every single run this week was either at or below my MGP of 8:35 and that is WITH warm ups. I did hills and flats on each run and did about 8:20-8:35 going up and around 7-7:30 going back down and once I went down my legs seemed to want to keep the pace and I hung around a 8-8:15 most of the time. Each run I challenged myself with adding miles and keeping the momentum. Challenge complete! Today was my long run of 13 miles and I was 20 seconds below my time needed for a full marathon. Pace of 8:33...WITH 2 miles warm-up...
I am still overwhelmed and still trying to soak it all in. A BQ finally feels within my reach. Now to work harder and keep that pace and get these legs even stronger! I do have to stop periodically but I try to keep the stop no more than 30 seconds but I know eventually that will subside and I'm sure if I ran a half marathon race right now I would probably keep on trucking to the finish on sheer adrenaline.

I've fixed my nutrition this week as well which has helped me to recover immensely each day. No more breads or pastas or even a sweet snack. All energy fuel for my body. I'm helping the banana companies a lot... Each night I have been massaging my quads and hamstrings with Hammer balm and then using my happy stick to get the entire leg. It feels great and refreshes my legs. I've been staying on top of my protein intake and taking my tissue rejuvenator's regularly.

I've also found the perfect match for my feet, FINALLY! My Brooks Ghost 2's and balega socks. No blisters and I still have all my toenails!

I don't know what else to say except that I am extremely happy about my breakthrough in my running. I have been saying a short prayer just before every run this week. What can I say?

God is listening. A little faith, prayer, and courage goes a long way.

Saturday, June 19, 2010

Training week 3 - Emotions

So this week was a low mileage week due to uncontrollable circumstances...but I still had a real good 5 miler that I pounded out a mgp and a sub mgp by 20 seconds for the mile. I wasn't going to let mother nature slow me down too much! Anyway, it was also a week that had me thinking. Today I was chatting with my coach and helped boost my confidence again (thanks Mickey).

When I first started running I was not this addicted, this competitive, nor did I have the desire to run Boston until after my second marathon. Then I looked into it and saw that I have to run a marathon at a 8:35 pace. I doubted but felt somewhere inside me that I should push with all I've got and go for it. I've had my up days and my down days. I've had days in a row where I couldn't run do to me being sick, kids being sick, or me studying my arse off for classes. Well, this summer I wanted to get a lot of training in and so far I am doing much better but I still get that self doubt sometimes. The self doubt that maybe I can't hit that mgp for the distance. The doubt that maybe I just don't have what it takes. I feel that doubt when I do a run that when my legs are tired they can't get below a 9:30 pace. I know they need to have that stamina come race day and to have the stamina to go even faster. But then there are those days that I hit my mark and hit it good and in the middle of my run I think about my qualifying race the last few miles coming up and over Diamond Head, and then I get tears in my eyes. I remember the feeling of accomplishment just to cross and finish and how wonderful it was. I want to have the feeling of crossing the finish with that 3:45 finish time. It seems impossible to me right now but I want to do it. My coach reminded me today that what you want is not always easy to get and you have to be willing to work hard and sacrifice. I have to use every available minute to my advantage. Which for me means to wake my butt up on time and get out the door to get my miles in. I have also failed on my nutrition a little the past few weeks by eating more bread/pasta than I should be. I know they are empty carbs. So why the heck am I letting myself eat it instead of energy efficient fuel??

I have to overcome my self doubt. I have to turn that energy around and put it into my run. I have to push my body and make it work harder. I was thinking today of my marathon last year and what my body was going through. After taking medicine for two days prior to the race, no matter how much I rehydrated, it wasn't enough. I ran from mile 8 to the finish line severely dehydrated. Wondering at mile 13 if I was even going to be able to finish safely, at mile 16 coming to the turn around point and playing the mental game, at mile 18 getting recharged and getting back to a 9:30 pace, at mile 19 hitting my 9 mile pace, at mile 23, hitting a 8:30 pace. Running simply to get to each aid station to guzzle 16oz of water. I finished with a 25 minute PR. If I can do that with my body then I have to be able to do this right? I cannot let obstacles hold me back. I have to overcome them, at least the ones that just involve me and not my family.

I have a dream of running Boston. I don't do things for myself. I just pray for the chance to run Boston and this next April is going to be my best hope. After that I will be searching for medical schools and once I'm in that program all my energy has to be devoted to learning to take care of others so running will still be a part of me but I won't have the time or availability to run Boston. The opportunity for me to qualify is at my front door. What happens with that opportunity is now up to me.

My heart wants it. I just want that one moment of personal victory.

I live. I dream. I run.

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Training week 2

This week was by far my most successful week EVER in training!! I logged a total of 69 miles, 38 of them running in a 4 day period. Never before have my legs been able to endure those miles in that short time frame. The most in 4 days was 28 miles. I can't believe it! I had two cross-training days where I did a hour on the cycle and worked my legs over on the weight machines. I've been trying to increase strength particularly in my hamstrings after some serious soreness last week. This week? Just fatigue on the legs, no major soreness. I've also been adding yoga to my daily routine and swimming if my day allows it. I also added a couple new core exercises that left me sore for about 3 days, lol! But they are good.

Day 1 of my four day running stint was a 10 miler and a nice one at that. I ran the first 5 for pace control and a 9:30 and the last 5 I let my legs go and I was at a 9 or below the whole time. :) Day 2, another 10 miler but a little easier. Day 3, I was scheduled for another 10 but made it 14 since hubby was going to have to be working that night and wouldn't be home until around 8:30-9am the next day. So I ran my 14 and it was tough but I hung in there. Pace stayed around 9:45 most of the time but I was okay when I was at a 10pace. I woke up knowing it was going to be a bugger of a run so pace was not my goal. The night of day 3 I gave my quads an ice massage, put ice under my hamstrings and used a tennis ball to massage my feet. I also rubbed in Hammer balm into my quads about 10 minutes each before I fell asleep. Day 4, I woke up, at some oatmeal and went for a short run when hubby got home at 8:30. It was VERY hot and sunny the whole time. My legs surprised me though. I held between 9 and 9:30 and went for 4 miles. I could have done another 2 but the heat was bad so I had to stop for safety reasons.

I am very proud of myself this week. My cross-training and nutrition and care for my legs has shown with the miles I put on them in 4 days. I'm getting stronger and soon I will be getting faster and these runs will be getting easier.

Monday is a rest day for me but I'm sure I will still squeeze in some laps at the pool and my yoga. I am very grateful to God for giving my legs the power this week. I look forward to the weeks to come!

To succeed, you must believe. (and I do!)

Sunday, June 6, 2010

Summer training week 1

Well, I've finally gotten into a groove with my summer training after a week of a stomach virus that kept me down. But...this week I logged a total of 49 miles, 14 were cycling miles. I swam, I ran, I cycled, I did weights, I did yoga. I felt great and I can see the improvement that the crosstraining has given me. My schedule is challenging with Rick's work schedule but I juggle it pretty good now that I found a gym where my kids can have a play area while I exercise. They are troopers too! I had a total of a hour and a half in the gym one day last week so I was able to do a hour on the treadmill and a half hour with weights. Then I come home, eat lunch and take them to the pool while I do laps. It all works out great and I'm loving it all!

Yesterday I did a 9.5 mile run and it was my fastest so far. I averaged a pace of 9:03 and I think if my warm up lap would have been faster I would have been sub 9. I was below a 9 pace 95% of my run and even went below my mgp of 8:35 and hit an average of 8:31 on mile 8.

Today's run was not as fast because my hamstrings were sore from yesterday but still a good run. I think I had at least 2 miles sub 9, 99% of the time but then I got tuckered out in my legs so I eased up.

It was a very successful week and I am happy with my results. It's weeks like these and runs like yesterday's that encourage me and help me believe in myself. I always think of what I have to do to qualify for Boston while I run and it helps me. All I can do is my best in training with what time and opportunity I have available to me.

It is a challenge for me but this is one week down and successful!

I live. I dream. I run.

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Summer training

So my summer training has started off a little slow but it getting into a groove now. My first day back from taking 2 weeks off to study and take my finals was filled with adrenaline and then some serious soreness for the next few days. I did too much my first day back and had some bad groin soreness and I was scared that I had injured myself again. I had tried to run 3 days after doing my first run and first cycling after 2 weeks and I couldn't take 3 strides. I had to stop. Luckily it was just soreness and I am back to 100% again. I took it easy this past week to heal and do some cross training in the pool.

Due to hubby's crazy and ever changing work schedule I have to go with the flow and adjust my outdoor run days as I can. I'm starting cycling and swimming as my cross training. The swimming part I absolutely love because if I can't get to the olympic size pool on base then I can take my kids here to our community pool and they play while I do laps. I've been getting in a good hour and half with and without fins and speed intervals. I also tow the kids occassionally too to that adds to my strength and they get a kick out of it. I'm getting back into my core/strength routine as well. I've had to lower my sets to 3 until after this next week then I will resume my 6 sets.

I'm excited to see how my summer training goes and excited to do some new things. Trying to qualify for Boston in December is a big challenge for me. I still have a long way to go on maintaining my speed and that is very tough for me. All I can do is my best and pray. The fall will be tough for me because I will be in class again and getting ready for a big move. We will be moving close to Christmas time. Lots on my schedule of accomplishments and must do's for this year. Pray and hope it is my time.

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Successful week

Well, I've had a great week. I've learned that my migraine trigger is caffeine so now that I have eliminated any source of caffeine in my diet I have had a week 100% migraine free! Not even a hint! What a great feeling that is!
Anyway, on to my actual training...I did well this week and had an extra motivator of Boston being held this past Monday. On Tuesday I found out I can try and qualify here at the Honolulu marathon. I think it may be a little tricky being a "tourist" marathon but I'm going to give it a go. I've been consistent with my strength training because I see the results in my speed and being able to maintain it more each time I run. I've amped it up to 6 reps of 8 on all leg exercises and finally hit my plank goal of 3 minutes and even hitting a few seconds beyond that. My weekly miles are not where I want them to be so I have to work on getting out the door by 5:25 to be running by 5:30. I can get 6-7 miles in a hour and that is what I need with an occassional 8 and then my weekend long run. This week I got my first long run in since about 3-4 weeks and I think I did pretty good. I need to do better but that's work in progress, baby steps. I was scheduled to do 12 but the route I planned out came out to be 13 and I ran a PR of 2 hours. Last year I ran 13 in 2:04. Now to work on getting that down to 1:51. Today's run was an avg of 9:13 pace. I actually did mile 7 in 8:05 if I remember correctly, mile 6 was 8:30ish. I tuckered myself out by doing that but it felt great and I'm glad I did it. My marathon goal pace is 8:35. All week I've been running nice and fast once I've warmed up my legs. I feel wonderful and hope to get better over the next 7 months. Time's a tickin!

Overall, great week and got at least 36 miles in. I would like to be doing 40-45 a week before peak training starts. I've also got to work on my endurance again so maybe I will concentrate on that over speed for the next couple months on my long runs.

Now to see what I can do this next week.

I live. I dream. I run.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

My exciting news of a BQ right here in Hawaii!

So I was casually looking for a BQ for 2011 in CA since that is where we will be moving to in January and guess what I found? The Honolulu marathon is a BQ! I got so excited I was all giddy and then started to sweat.... ANYWAY, I told my trainer and he got all excited for me as well and it's a go. I am going to try and qualify this December!! I still have a lot of work to do but I'm feeling confident. I've done up to 6.7 miles at around a 8:30-8:45 pace minus my warm up mile that is, so I still have 20 miles to go and I know it will be tough. I have an advantage, I know the course already and where I know I will have to push instead of slacking off. Diamond Head. Not so much the beginning as the end at mile 24. I have to believe in myself and have faith in God to help me accomplish this dream.

The past couple weeks have been trivial with migraines and sinus infection AND sore throat, but I have still been able to hold that pace and it feels good. I have increase the reps and weight to my strength training and I finally hit my goal plank time of 3 minutes. Today I surpassed it by 10 seconds. I am very encouraged at this point and I am maintaining my discipline to get strength training in at least 5 days a week. I feel my two days off are essential to my training just as the running itself. It keeps me from feeling bogged down with college, the kids, kids activities, housework, errands, and running. It gets a bit crazy and tiring. This summer I will have off from college so I should be able to get good solid training time in and hopefully I can hold it through the fall semester.

I'm very excited and have a new sense of motivation because I will actually have the chance to qualify this year. I was thinking about it earlier today and I thought to myself that other than the birth of my two children, this would be my biggest accomplishment. My heart and spirit want it now I have to train my body to take it.

My destiny awaits in December 2010.

Saturday, April 3, 2010

Ford Island Bridge 10k race 2010

Well, I had two goals in mind today and I knew I would meet at least one of them. Keep my pace under 9, preferrable between 8:30-8:45, and/or run it in 52:30. Well, I met the goal pace but missed my goal time. That's okay though because I know I did my best today.

I woke up at 5am with finally a full 8.5 hours of uninterrupted sleep. The past two nights I've been woken up every couple of hours by the kids for some reason or another so last night I went to bed at 8:30 and was fast asleep in a matter of minutes. I woke up with a positive mindset and refreshed. It was rainy and a little cool out before the race started but the rained stopped and the weather was beautiful but a little windy. Before I got out of the car I prayed for strength, endurance, and courage to fight and push myself.

I started up in the front of the pack with the elites just to find my own road and I did and it was great! I stayed focused and ran my own race. I held my 8:30-8:45 pace for 98% of the run. I got slowed a little when we hit the runway due to wind but not too much, only to about a 9:09 but I got myself back under that in no time. I lost time again going back across the bridge from wind and pushing up the hill and slowed to a 9:44 at one point. I was not happy about that at all but made sure to pick the pace back up once I got to the top and had some downhill slope. Once I rounded the turn for the finish line I just went as fast as I could trying to avoid any dips or holes in the ground.

Garmin time was 53:55, not sure of chip time yet. I bet my time from last year by 2 minutes 51 seconds. It was a good day and a good race. Next up for me in a 5k in May then a half marathon in June.

My overall pace was 30 seconds faster than last year. Training is paying off! Now to train harder.
Lap 1: 8:37
Lap 2: 8:35
Lap 3: 8:42
Lap 4: 8:46(wind runway)
Lap 5: 8:51
Lap 6: 9:02 (bridge/wind)
Lap 7: .2 miles 7:53

I live. I dream. I run.

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Weekly update

So...after suffering from 2 migraines this week I still managed to get a decent number of miles in, 34. I have an appointment Tuesday to see the doctor about them, again...and get more medicine...again.
Runs were good this week. I had a couple easy paced runs but also had some faster ones. Fartleks were good this week and I hadn't done them in awhile. Friday I had the chance to run Diamond Head and even had a little off road adventure treking downhill to the beach. It was a good run and workout on my legs for hillwork but the hour rest on the beach was fabulous. :) I took Saturday off to prep for today's long run, well, semi-long. I had to be back home by 7:15 so hubby could leave for work so my 12 miler turned into a 10 but I made it a good one. Hills throughout the run one of which was a steady incline for 1.5 miles and my cheeks were feeling the burn! I took the pace easy the entire run but the last two miles I did pick it up without realizing it to a 9min mile.
My core/strength workouts have been consistent this week. I love some of my new core exercises. My weight is now 126, waist 26, hips 38. Not bad at all. Lean but still got my curves! When I started this new training in January I was at around 133, waist around 27, hips too big, lol! I had gained weight 6 weeks during my injury down time before the marathon so I wanted to get back to my normal weight and such. Thanks Mickey!
From the sounds of it we are here until January so the Honolulu marathon will be my 3rd and hopefully my 4th marathon will be a BQ. We shall see. I still have a lot of speed to do and maintain. That equates to a lot of praying and hard work!

I live. I dream. I run.

Monday, March 22, 2010

After a week off of running

This was not by choice really but I just had company in for 3 weeks, 2 sick kids, a big test I had to study for and then cleaning my house after company left. My body was exhausted and needed the break! I started back out this morning and did 5 miles and my pace seemed to still be on track with sub 9 pacing. I've been doing a lot better. The week before I took a week off I did nothing but speed runs. Well, to me it was all speed because I aimed for sub 9 paces every run. The only exception was my 12 miler where I did the first 4 at an easy 9:30, next four were just sub 9 at around 8:50 or faster, then another easy 4 at 9:30. I still need to work on the endurance at at least a 8:45 pace. That's why I have been pushing myself to run harder. I slow it up if my body needs it during a run but I increase my pace again as soon as I feel I can do it for another half mile or mile or more.
I have a 10k on April 4th and I'm hoping to PR. Last year I think my time was 56:04 and that time surprised me so after training in speed lately I'm hoping to shave some time off of my 10k.
My nutrition has been helping me run better as well. Not that it was ever really bad just not as much usable fuel for my body. No breads, no pastas, no sweets, little or no saucy type foods. If I need something sweet I indulge in plain yogurt with fresh blueberries and raspberries. I'm very proud of myself in that respect!
My measurements are also where I like them. I'm back at a slender 127 and have lost over an inch in my waist and hips since January when I started my training. I can feel and see the improvement so I have to keep reminding myself that all my hard work and discipline is paying off and I just need to stick to it.

Train smart, race hard.

Monday, February 15, 2010

First race since new training

Let me start off by saying what a tough week I just had. I had two good running days, Monday and Tuesday, had Wednesday and my scheduled day off. I headed out Thursday morning for my second fartlek run of the week but had to stop after 2 miles due to a migraine onset and mother nature working against me. Well, the migraine really beat me up this time. It took 2 doses of my medicine to help get rid of it but before it left my feeble body I was visiting the bathroom. Friday I was weakened from lack of nutrition from all of it leaving my body the day before so I tried eating as best I could. Saturday disaster hit again at night. I had tried two new supplements for running and one of them triggered another migraine that evening. I woke up at 1am to take my migraine medicine in hopes that Sunday I could rest up from the effects and get my nutrition up to par again. That is my prelude to race day, lol!

So the past 4 weeks I have been training hard and very happily running faster. My fartlek runs have been right on and I've been doing well and feeling great. I've also cleaned up my nutrition and have lost 4 lbs and lost and inch in hips and waist. I'm getting leaner and faster and I'm happy. Today was a test for me on speed endurance but unfortunately I had a few obstacles that I couldn't seem to get away from. The run was 8.1 miles, distance wise, cake, speedwise for me? Trivial still. I had issues with slower runners lining up towards the front so right from the get go I was dodging people for 4 miles but at least still able to maintain a 8:30-8:45 pace, then the last 4 I was next to the military formations with flag bearers getting out of formation and running AGAINST runner's and yelling. The aid stations were not fun either. The guys wouldn't drink the water, instead they were throwing on each other and I kept getting smacked in the face. I also kept getting shoved closer and closer to the curb no matter how hard I tried to keep my space. Cadence callers would stop and run in place outside of the formation too. So it was I either deal with the slower pace or risk an ankle injury by turning my road race into a trail race. That being said, since I'm trying to have an injury free season I opted the slower pace but wasn't at all happy about it.

I just have to learn race strategies. I haven't done many of the smaller races enough to know the do's and don'ts if I want to run fast so my trainer and I are going to work on this. He's been there done that so he'll show me the ropes. My time was 1:16 with avg pace of 9:15. I wanted to be at least just under a 9 min avg pace but things just didn't work out that way for me today. It is still a PR for me just not the one I was shooting for. I do thank God for giving me the strength to do what I did today. It was a tough week for me physically. I can do nothing without him.

I live. I dream. I run.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Had to say this...

I was supposed to run 7 miles today but had sore ankles from Sunday's 7 miler morning run and then 3 mile hike up to a lighthouse pushing my 5 and 3 year old! Then Monday I ran my 6 miles easy pace. Well this morning I only had time to do 5 but boy was it an awesome 5! A new training PR, 45mins! I started out my warm-up at a 10 pace then went to a 9:30 after a half mile, then hit it to a 8:50-9:05 for the next 2.5 miles then increased paced again to a 8-8:30 and finished at a 7:30pace. I couldn't believe it. Nothing bothered me on the run! My legs (and ankles) were tip top shape. :) It sounds corny, but sometimes I have to think about my goal and imagine me "in the moment" for the run I want to do. Well, it works! Typical woman, I get all emotional and it drives me to push harder when I'm running.

It was a good training day!

Monday, February 1, 2010

Training 17Jan-1Feb

Every week I am seeing results of my training. By January 17th I had lost half an inch in my hips and 3/4 in my waist. As for my running, well that's going well too! My first week of training, the day after my fartlek's I was supposed to run 6-8 miles. Well, the first week I was only able to do 4 in the morning and very sluggish and I did another 3 that evening but a little faster but still stiff. The following week for that same run I was able to do 6 in the morning, a little slower than normal but at least I was able to complete the mileage. My speed work that previous day I had also pushed myself harder during the 7 miles with a slow pace of 9:30 and my fast pace increased from 8-8:30 to a 7:50-8:20 and it seems to be staying in that range the past couple weeks. We'll see how I do this week. I also notice that my comfort pace has increased from a 9:30 to a 9:09-9:12. Amazing. I never thought I would see the day... I still have a long ways to go but I'm anxious to see how well I can maintain a fast pace for my 8.1 mile race coming up this President's day. I would like to hold a 8:30-8:45 but who knows what will happen. My adrenaline always takes over during a race.
This week I'm starting to implement some new exercises in along with my normal ones to help get rid of a little more in the hips/waist area. I've also learned to "not sweat" a bad day that my legs just don't want to go out. If they need the break I need to give it to them. I'm working myself hard every run and trying to do the pace I am told to do so sometimes they get pretty tired no matter how much protein they get. On top of studying for school, running around with the kids and doing my own running thing, I get a little exhausted. But it's okay, I come back strong and that's what matters.
I have a lot of motivators on Dailymile and they inspire me on every run. Each person has an "it" factor that drives me to push harder.
Now time to go ice my ankles from a 7 mile morning run, then a 3mile hike pushing a 5 and 3 year old in a stroller yesterday then getting up this morning to get my 6 miles in! Ouch!

Until next time,
Train smart, race hard!!

Sunday, January 17, 2010

This weeks training...

This week's training was a good one! My coach mixed things up for me a bit and made the runs fun. Along with my usual core and strength exercises I had a 36 mile week. All my runs this week were very good but Friday's run was like running with lead in my pants! Thursday was a 7 mile fartlek run, my first attempt at this type of speedwork. It went great! The plan was to do a 8:30 fast pace, 9:30 slow pace. Well, I ended up being able to do a 8-8:30 fast pace, steadying out at 8:15 mostly, and then I kept the 9:30 slow pace. I really worked it that day and I was very proud of myself! Friday called for 6-8 miles but I had to split it up. I managed to get 4 done before 6:30am and grudgingly did another 3 at 5:30pm with my little boy in the stroller and my daughter riding her bicycle. The morning run was very slow, 10-10:30 but evening I somehow found energy reserves and managed a 9:30 pace. Today I ran 13.1, my first long run since the marathon and it felt nice to be out that long again. It wasn't the pace I was shooting for but I stayed around 9:15 most of the run so I am ok with that. Just have to learn to run race pace when not racing... That's hard for me without my adrenaline rush!

I've also started a series of core, leg and arm exercises all of which I am sore from all the time, but a good sore. I'm trying to lose an inch in the hips since I gained a bit from marathon training. That is going well. Cutting out the pastas, breads and sauces is not easy but a little will power and it's quite doable. :) In one week I've lost a quarter inch in my waist and hips.

My nutrition has improved, my strength, my speed and I don't know that I would be doing this well right now without Mickey's help and advice. Also, I recommend Hammer nutrition. It has don't wonders for the healing of my muscle's after each training session! Unless I do a powerhouse run like the fartleks, I am running on fresh legs every run and that is a wonderful feeling.

Repeating this week for next until I get my new weekly plan. Run hard, run fast, be happy!

God's speed!

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

My second marathon

After suffering from a groin injury for the first 6 weeks of my marathon training and then downed again due to a miscarriage I had only 6 weeks to train before the marathon on December 13th, 2009. A friend from Dailymile, Mickey Woolard, offered to coach me to get me to my marathon that I was oh so determined to run! Through him I learned a little more about my nutrition, my running technique and habits, etc. I have to say, I have never ran better and I am constantly reaching new goals and hitting better paces. I was still having rough patches during those 6 weeks, I did 3 long runs, well, 4 if you count the one I snuck in two weeks before the marathon... My speed naturally increased from a 10:30 pace to a 9:30 pace after my first marathon and now I'm even faster after my second. So here is my success story, may you find some inspiration...

I was alone this year, my friend injured her knee and can no longer run long distances. I was excited but nervous because I knew I didn't have the training that I really needed. The marathon was on a Sunday but I woke up the Friday before with a sinus infection and took mucinex for two days to get rid of it. Little did I realize the problem this would pose for me on race day. My plan was to do the run/walk/run method with a 3:1 ratio but run fast, well, fast for me that is. I had my gel packs, I had my sustained energy and HEED mixes with me to carry me through. Mentally I was ready and physically only partially. Well, I stuck to my plan and ran at a pace between 8:30-9 and walked my walk breaks as fast as I could. I was doing great and feeling great...up until mile 8. Mile 7 I stopped for a fast bathroom break and then hit Diamond Head at mile 8. This year the weather was beautiful so it was no issue getting up and over this time. After I got over Diamond Head, it hit me like a brick wall...dehydration! The mucinex dehydrated my body regardless of how much I hydrated myself two days before. I started to get nervous and a little weak. I wanted water and a lot of it! I couldn't even handle my drink mix anymore so I stopped drinking that altogether and I was only able to get down on gel pack. At mile 11 I really started to wonder if I was going to be able to finish and for me to think that meant my situation was pretty shakey. I am not a quiter by any means. Thus began my mental games just to get to each aid station to guzzle water, about 2 16 oz glasses full each time I stopped. After mile 13 I thought, "ok, I'm halfway there, keep going, I can do this". I also started texting my coach on my 1 minute walk sessions. Short and to the point words though! I made it to mile 15 and knew that the backtrack portion was just 2 miles away so I kept going and kept running for water. This whole time since mile 9 my pace had slowed to a 10 min mile. Mile 17, backtracking now and my mind knew it and I used it. My pace quickened to a 9:30. Mile 19 I saw a struggling runner and stopped for about 4 minutes to help her stretch it out. At this point Mickey was texting me back encouraging me and sending prayers my way. I looked at my garmin and noticed my time and miles left and realized that I could still beat my first marathon time. I seemed to get a renewed sense of energy and my pace quickened to a 9 min mile and I was now passing people. Every now and then tears started filling my eyes because I knew a PR was within my reach. Mile 22 I still at a 9 min mile. Mile 24 was Diamond Head but this time it was alllllll mine! For the first time ever I maintained my pace running uphill! Again, tears, again, more texting to Mickey and my friend who was waiting for me at the finish. Mile 25 my knees started to ache from pain and it was hard to get back to pace but I was now pacing a 8:30 min mile but almost crying. I was still on target for a sub 5 marathon and I kept pushing with all I had. Mile 26 got harder on my knees because it was also downhill but I refused to walk anymore and just prayed to God to pick me up and carry me to that finish line. And so he did, at a 8 min mile pace and 25 minutes faster than my first marathon. I was ecstatic! I just ran my heart out and had never felt better in my entire life! Other than the birth of my two children, that was my greatest accomplishment!
That next week I was still on my runner's high and I was running again at a 9 min mile pace on Tuesday.