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Monday, August 29, 2016

towpath marathon training, week 10

Only 6 weeks until race day!

Cross: Rowing and Biking


Usually Tuesday is my speedwork day, however I took the day off from running to fully rest and recover from that shin splint issue that popped up during Week 9 of training.

Cross: Rowing and Biking

5 mi / 8:59 pace

What was scheduled for this week was a 10 mile tempo run, but I knew that would be pushing it not knowing if my shin would cooperate.  I ran an easy 5 during lunch and felt great, no pain.

My first of two stops at Panera aka St. Louis Bread Company this week. You can order from iPads when you walk in which is extremely convenient if you're in a hurry.

Thursday's "Healthy" Option at work for lunch. Allegedly 290 calories..

Jeni's released their new Gooey Butter Cake flavor a day early in St. Louis so definitely had to try that out.

It was delicious. I also got the Sweet Biscuits and Peach Jam flavor. So. Good.

Then we went over to Whole Foods because I was intrigued by their bar situation. Such cheap beers! And we're not talking about Bud Light here, tons of local options. 

4 mi / 9:13 pace

My intention was to get the last 5 of the "tempo" run in after work before the Cardinals game but only had time to get 4 in. I felt a little bit of pain early in the run around 2 miles, but it disappeared.

I apparently didn't take any real pictures of our suite, but believe me, the seats were great, and the food (and dessert cart) were even better.

1 mi / 8:59 pace

This was a rather unplanned 1 miler but hey at least I got my last mile of the tempo in!

Tried out some local kombucha to ~*cleanse~* myself. (Let's be honest, a good workout/run is more cleansing). 

15 mi / 9:27 pace

Very excited to share the I got my long run and felt very little pain! And also wore my brand new running shoes - the New Balance Vongo - and they were awesome.  Sometimes, actually, a lot of times, stability running shoes are super clunky and look like astronaut shoes, but I really like the look of these. 

And yes, it was the typical hot and humid situation but I felt like I didn't sweat as much as usual. Probably because it was a slower pace, but that's OK!

This week, we have a Steps Challenge starting at work for the next month, so I will really be working on my steps game (it's rare for me to hit 10k if I don't run that day), and also getting back into the routine of 3 runs/wk.

Sunday, August 21, 2016

towpath marathon training, weeks 8+9

I never actually posted my week of training leading up to the half marathon, so here's a quick review of that and this last week! Warning: Injury ahead!

Week 8

Monday - Rest
Tuesday - Core + Hike

On Tuesday morning, I headed over to the Lake of the Ozarks for work. Needless to say.. I have seen bigger lakes. Caught a nice sunset though!

Also found a castle.

Wednesday - Speedwork - 5.6mi/9:01 pace

We had a half day of work in the morning and then had a free afternoon. I believe I ran a little too soon after lunch because this did NOT feel good at all. 

Nice sunrise from the room!

Thursday - 8 mi run (4 in the AM, 8:46 pace, 4 in the PM, 9:09 pace, pretty darn hilly)
Friday - Cross
Saturday - Rest
Sunday - Half

Week 9

After my performance at the half, I decided I need to mix up my routine a bit. I have been struggling quite a bit to get up before work to work out so I decided to join the gym at work so I can get my workouts done immediately before, after work or during lunch, which was pretty much what I did in Flagstaff since I lived so close to work.

Monday - Cross - Bike + Deep Stretch Yoga
Tuesday - Speedwork - 5.4 mi/8:41 pace (felt pretty good!) + Lift
Wednesday - Cross - Bike + Vinyasa (Hot??) Yoga

Discovered a new lunch place near work. This was the best tofu I have ever eaten!

Thursday - Tempo - 6 mi / 8:20 pace, Lift

I ran this during lunch on the treadmill at work - first time utilizing this treadmill. I felt REALLY good the whole time and was running at a 7:50-8:00 pace the last three miles easily.  However, I was running in my Adidas shoes that are now over 350 miles. After this run, I felt some pain in my right leg but disregarded it and carried on like normal..

Friday - Cross - Bike
Saturday - Rest

Knowing my Adidas shoes are pretty much done, I decided to go to the running store to buy some new shoes.  When trying the new shoes on, I noticed that the pain in my right leg was still going strong.. but once again disregarded it.

On your left, New Balance Vongo, the right Saucony Hurricane ISO. They ordered the New Balance in a few sizes for me so I can try them on..still no new shoes yet.

Sunday - Long - 7 mi (not "long", but it was supposed to be 20)

And here comes Sunday, time for my next 20 miler. First off - weather was PERFECT! I got up later than usual but even at 8a it actually felt cool for once, and not humid! Had a pretty steady 8:30 pace for a few miles, then noticed right around miles 2.5-3 that the pain in my right leg was back and it was bad. I tried to run slower, force myself to at least go a few more miles to make it a total 10, but I had to turn around at mile 3.5. I have a very high pain threshold so the fact that I had to cut this run so short is a little worrisome.

Once I got home I iced it a few times, then literally hobbled over to brunch.

Veggie hash!

The sorrow about my self-diagnosed shin splints was so real that I felt like we needed to go on a little brewery tour.

So many breweries in STL!

The Innovator at Urban Chestnut Brewing.

So right now, I am icing once again, and will spend my first few days this week just focusing on cross-training...hopefully with a bit of rest from running and new shoes just around the corner, this will be just a minor hiccup in training!!

Monday, August 15, 2016

rock hall half marathon

Sunday was Race Day in Cleveland, Ohio!

We picked up our bibs at the one and only Rock and Roll Hall of Fame...

It was a balmy 70 something degrees with a high humidity and dew point - we shouldn't have been surprised!

The course itself was pretty straight forward - slight hill at the half mile mark right after Browns Stadium then you ran through to Cleveland State, down to the Cleveland Clinic, turning shortly after that to run down through a park back to the lakeshore, with the last 3-4 miles along the lake.

The goal was to start at an 8:00min/pace which happened for the first three miles but then the humidity really got the best of me. I started to feel pretty good again near the end but I think that was because I had come to terms that a sub 1:45 wasn't going to happen.  Also, there was a nice breeze that usually would peeve me, but it sure felt good with all the humidity! It did drizzle a bit which was also very welcome.

As Jenny described it - this is my "I hate humidity" face at the end.

I finished in 1:52:39 - which, if you're keeping track, is my first time NOT setting a PR during a race since August of last year. I have not fully appreciated how impressive that streak is yet..

They had this cool area where you could type in your bib number to see your results - very nice!

By far the most impressive performance of the day was my 3, almost 4, year old niece Emma rocking the 5k! She ended up running half of the 5k and we fully expected her to kick back in the stroller for the race! Look at the determination...and form!!

My first ever 5k in May 2013 on the left, Emma's first 5k on Sunday on the right. Emma definitely did not want to wait 22 years like her aunt to run her first 5k apparently!!

Loving the guitar action of course.

The shirt and the medal were/are awesome! The guitar pick on the medal moves!

Cleveland put up three of these around the city for the RNC so we made sure to get a post-race pic with one of them!

Overall, great race with the family in the CLE! Definitely need to step up my training though if I want any sort of Marathon PR in less than 8 weeks. Crossing my fingers that training in humidity will be just as effective as the training at altitude :P

Monday, August 8, 2016

towpath marathon training, week 7

Weird week!  The plan this week was to adjust my workouts so I would get my long run in on Friday morning before heading up to Michigan for a bachelorette party.  Well, I forgot that I live in the Midwest now and the weather is way more of a wildcard than it ever was in Arizona...


6.67 miles / 8:50 pace


The mistake I made with this workout was that I forgot to bring my water in to the gym.  So after my speedwork, I had water from the water fountain but it wasn't enough. I felt terrible once I started lifting and for the rest of the night. Never EVER forget to bring your own water with you to the gym so you stay properly hydrated, especially after drenching the treadmill with your sweat.

On a side note, we usually get these annual deals on Nespresso machines at work so I finally decided to get one, which was a risk in my eyes since I am not a big fan of Keurig machines. However...this machine is awesome! The coffee is actually a really good quality and the machine is small and doesn't take up too much space.  




Got the biking done in the morning in some kind of weird super tired daze. It was a 50 minute workout which I did not realize! (10 min easy, 6 x (2 min hard, 3 min easy), 10 min easy)


6 mi / 8:53 pace

So at work, it was our 150th Anniversary, so we received a bunch of company products, including.. Raisinets. I ate this entire box with my lunch.  I thought it wouldn't impact me 6 hours later during my run but nope. Oh how I miss the days where I could be young and binge away...

Our CEO speaking at the lobby event.  I also am pretty excited about Instagram stories since my family (looking at you Jenny and Sarah!) doesn't have Snapchat.

I have been pretty great about not eating sweets but when I see a cupcake with delectable frosting...

So good..but so bad.



Going back to my intention to run long Friday morning - I took Thursday as a rest day....which included no drinking at happy hour and carbing up appropriately.. 

Ollie thinks that my pillows are actually his pillows.



However, it's the Midwest and Mother Nature does not care about your long run.

If I had a short run this morning, I would've done it, but since the red on the radar was moving towards the southeast,  I didn't want to chance my long run being cut short by severe weather, and being caught a long ways away from my car in the middle of a storm. I have done that before and it's not fun. Well, it was fun that time because I was running in the zoo but you know what I mean.

Then lots of snacks occurred in Michigan. (Bachelorette Party!)

Bacon-wrapped jalapeƱos.



Tunnel Beach.


Long Run
10 mi
6.29 mi, 8:56 pace
3.71, 8:30 pace

So I learned that sometimes you just won't get the miles in and it's just going to have to work. I felt fine post-Bachelorette shenanigans on Sunday morning, and since everybody was sleeping in, I decided to get a few miles in, but I knew I couldn't get the planned 18 in all at once. (P.S. I am shocked these runs were even at these paces thanks to all the eating and drinking on Saturday. Hydration is so important!!)

It was perfect weather.

I had every intention of running the last 11.8 when I got back into St. Louis but I just decided to stick to rounding out at 10 for the day since the only time I could work out was 5-5:15a Monday morning.  My half marathon is this Sunday, otherwise I would have gone for more miles. I'm glad at least I chose to cut back the mileage just for recovery's sake and not because I was injured or something.

Cute coffee shop in Saugatuck.

So, yes, heading to Cleveland next weekend to run in the Rock Hall Half Marathon on Sunday. I will be ecstatic if I finish under 1:45 since I feel like it's taking forever to get into decent shape!

Monday, August 1, 2016

towpath marathon training week 6


Cross - Bike

Finally got my new license plates, ordered my new driver license, and joined the library!  Needless to say, there's WAY more than 2 libraries here unlike Flagstaff..


Speedwork + Lifting
6.5 mi / 8:43 pace

Ran on the treadmill in the morning, then came back in the evening for a session with the personal trainer. Holy squats and lunges.  I was sore until Friday.

I hardly took any pictures this week but I found this one from that 10k I ran here in June. Can you tell I was unhappy with finishing above 50 minutes? :P


Cross - Rowing

Decided to row thanks to the hamstring soreness.


Tempo + Lifting
7 mi / 8:53 pace

I lifted before I ran which was pretty bold.  Obviously it was more of an upper body day since I was still sore from Tuesday's workout.

I enjoy going outside for lunch.



Thank goodness for a rest day! Got to sleep early too which hasn't happened in quite some time.


20 mi / 9:31 pace

Got out on the trail just after sunrise, around 6:10a I think. It was pretty humid of course, so this was not at target pace but still..got the 20 in.  Pain hit immediately finishing after this one- very reminiscent of the soreness that hit me a few hours after the Milan Marathon.  I hobbled around the town of St. Charles in an attempt to stay on my feet for a bit then made my way back home to eat and foam roll.

I love my new Oiselle shorts!

Yeah, this is totally the Midwest. The trail turned into a trail run for a few minutes which was pretty fun!


Cross - Rowing

Very happy that the soreness already had disappeared by Sunday morning! Not sure why it was so brutal. Did a lot of long overdue unpacking and organizing in my apartment and now it actually looks like I live here and not like I just moved in!

Did I mention I indulged after my long run on Saturday? It has been too long and I needed calories..

Also, got my hair cut for the first time in like 4 months too! Productive week!