Thursday, August 30, 2007

Running in Circles.

I'm happy to report that I had the fortitude to run eight miles by myself on my first day of school, with students. It was a humid, boring run; but, it felt so good to work off all of that nervous energy. I got started pretty early (like, 5:15); but next time I think I need to get out by five. My pace wa very comfortable, it was a solid nine minutes per mile. Not bad at all!

I ran a negative spilt, which is a very good thing to practice when marathon training. A negative spilt is when the second half of the run is faster than the first half. I figured out during the last marathon that I HAVE to run the first half slower than the second. And, I do mean I HAVE to. Not only is better for me physically, but more importantly, it helps me psychologically. When you're on the sixteenth mile, it's uplifting to know that you're only getting faster and stronger than you were on the tenth mile. That's huge.

While I was running yesterday morning, I ran into a woman I know and we've made plans to meet one another tomorrow morning. It will be so nice to have some company and to have a reason to get out of the house on time. Tomorrow's run is four, which seems so do-able.

During the run yesterday, I thought a lot about the marathon, which was a good thing...But, I have to admit, when you're finishing up an eight mile run in this hot, humid weather; you begin to wonder if you've really got it in yourself to run a marathon...

I try not to let these thoughts cross my mind because OF COURSE I can do it. It might not FEEL good and it's certainly going to be painful, but I know I can do it...

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Trying to Fit it all in..

Our move last year sure did change my whole running plan. Initially, I thought that I'd be able to just meet my friends "whenever" to run because we moved only about twelve miles from our old house. And, initially, that scheme worked out fine, until I got so tired I could barely think in the evenings. I was getting up somewhere between 4:30 and 4:45 in order to run with my friends. Eventually the lack of sleep caught up with me and I got very sick with bronchitis.

So, I figured I'd run on my own in my neighborhood. That worked out okay until I scared myself with the newspaper delivery man. I thought that his patterns seemed a little strange, etc, etc, etc. So, I quit running by myself. Then I decided that I was brave enough to give it another go, and somewhere soon after that, this man popped up on a cul-de-sac out of nowhere. I got VERY scared that day and quit, once again, running by myself.

Move ahead to the summer and the early morning sunlight, I began, yet again, to run alone. And, I'm still feeling okay about running by myself...However, I'm encountering some obstacles. One, it's very dark again this early in the am. I haven't had the best track record of running in the dark by myself, as I have mentioned. And, two, this marathon plan calls for some pretty long runs in the middle of the week, anywhere between seven and eight miles. Because I've switched jobs this year, I can no longer use the shower that was in my office; which means I can't meet my friends on the day they do their long run. And, the indoor pool isn't open yet, so I can't shower at the pool after meeting my running friends, either. So, I'm going to be stuck (hopefully, just this week...) running eight miles, by myself. Or, I guess I could just not shower on the first day of school and just get dressed there? : )

It's funny that with the job change, I have experienced the most stress in trying to figure out how I'm going to run in the mornings. It's one of my top priorities, though...

Saturday, August 25, 2007

Easy Eleven.

Today's run was a blast. We ran about 10.94 miles, approximately, of course...

There were four of us, one of whom has never run above ten miles or so. And, she did so well!

I felt very strong, despite the horrendous humidity. My toes, however, hurt! I'm thinking about finding a podiatrist for after the marathon.

This week the mileage goes up considerably. The mid-week long run is eight. And, what about the long one, you ask? Oh. Just SEVENTEEN. Ha. : ( I can preeetty much count on sleeping all of next Saturday afternoon. That's okay, though, the running high is certainly worth it; as are the sodas and junk food that will DEFINITELY follow as well....

Stay tuned! Things are starting to gear up around here for this marathon!!

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Freedom: GONE.

Oh boy. I'm really missing the freedom of running later in the morning. I love the summer days when all I have to do is get home by 7:45 for J. to get to work on time. Now, if I'm not home by 6:30 and in the shower, I'm totally late for work.

This morning I got up around 4:30 am and met two friends around 5:15, or so. The run was fantastic. I'm feeling very strong right now. Actually, come to think of it, I haven't run since Saturday. Wow. It's been awhile! That must be why I felt so good today...

The break that I took means that I'm going to have to squeeze in three more runs by Sunday to get my mileage back on track. Tomorrow I'm going to try to do seven, Friday will be short-like four, and then Saturday will be the long one.

My body is holding up well, aside from the lack of sleep. The toes seem to be enjoying the anti-fungal medication....

I really do miss my freedom and the sunlight early in the morning.

Sunday, August 19, 2007

Rendered Useless.

Anything over fifteen miles really takes a toll on my energy level for the rest of the day. And, well, it just plain hurts when you've been running that long!

Aside from that, yesterday's run was great!! At 5:30, I met five other runners. We did a five miler around town, and then I peeled off with two friends and we went to meet three other girls at 6:15. From there, we caught up with the first group, so all together there were nine of us! It gets better, though, from there we met one more runner. Once we got everyone collected, we ran about five more miles together. By that time, it was time for four of the original five to head back to their cars, so the rest of us did another five mile loop. Are you confused yet? We like to change things up a bit, I suppose...

I felt fine throughout the run. As usual, I spent lots of time calculating the distance and multiplying it by various speeds. I do this all the time! It drives me crazy sometimes...In my head, I knew that I needed to get in two hours and fifteen minutes, at least. So, once I got to that point, I just wanted to walk. My friends carried me through the last mile, or was probably less than that...

My problem with super long runs usually isn't the running itself, it's what comes afterwards. It's like I go into shock from the strain on my body or something; my stomach cramps, my feet ache, I have chafing around my stomach from the fuel belt, I'm STARVING, and I'm very achy. I've found, though, that the more I continue to move throughout the day, the better off I am. So, chasing Michael, while it's exhausting, actually prevents me from feeling incredibly sore the very next day.

I am very, very thankful for my helpful husband after long runs, though. I wouldn't be able to run marathons if he wasn't such a help with our little guy.

Thursday, August 16, 2007

What they don't tell you...

One of the worst parts of marathon training is the thrashing that my toes receive. I pretty much always get blisters underneath my toenails from the constant pounding that comes with each stride. During the last marathon that I ran, my big left toe had a monsterous blister underneath it that lingered around until after EASTER.

Right now, I am trying this fungal cream for my toes, which is so disgusting, in hopes that my toes will hold up better throughout the training. It seems to be helping, although I'm confident that I'll lose two or three nails before marathon day.

Maybe I'll go ahead and schedule a pedicure for the day after the race...That's something to run for, right?

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Rambling Re Running...

The running reunion was great, if you've been wondering...

My friend, Tricia, was in town on Monday, as well, so we got a run in on Monday morning.

The nine miles on Sunday went quickly, believe it or not. After running at the beach for a week, this weather is absolutely delightful and great for running!

Tomorrow I need to squeeze in seven. My initial plan was to do that this morning, but I felt a little tired and unmotivated.

Those feelings quickly dissipated, however, as soon as I got started. I always assume that I'm running ten minute pace, even though I think I go a little faster than 10/mile, so I multiply the miles by ten to figure out the amount of time that I need to run for that morning. Since I skipped the seven miles and opted for four, I ran just shy of forty minutes today. I definitely think I went over the four miles because I was huffing and puffing at the finish of my run.

Next week school starts, which means that I am not going to be able to leisurely drink my coffee and read the newspaper before my morning run. Bummer. I've always got the weekends, though...

Fifteen on Saturday...UGGH. It's supposed to be very cool though, that'll help things!

More later..

Sunday, August 12, 2007

A Running Reunion

This morning I am going to meet my old neighbor for a run, and I can't wait. She moved away a few years ago, but prior to her move we lived across the street from one another and we ran together all the time. Anytime she comes home we try to have a little running party, if you will.

This morning I am going to try to make this running reunion my long run. I'm planning on running nine today, since I wasn't able to get it in while we were at the beach. It should be a good run, simply because the humidity is not like 500%.

Even though I didn't do the long run at the beach, I did get my mileage in for the shorter/middle distance runs. The day that I ran seven was extremely difficult, with the wind and the humidity.

It's been a great running week, though. And, I am especially looking forward to seeing my old friend, I have missed her so...

Tuesday, August 7, 2007

Beach Running.

This morning I got up around six, made my coffee and got ready for another day of running on the beach. It was a HOT, HUMID run; let me tell ya. Yesterday was a little bit easier than today, mainly because a storm came through early in the morning, which cooled things off quite a bit. Today was a different story, however.

For the past two days, I have run to the "point" of the island. It is a beautiful, quiet peaceful place where the island actually comes to a "point". It's interesting to note how the island changes from year to year. When we were here in 2002, the point was almost non-existent. Thanks to a lot of work by the locals here, they have added sand bags and brought in sand to make the point wider.

Tomorrow I should do seven miles or so, and then I plan on taking off Thursday so that I can do my long run on Friday.

Today I did about four miles or so, yesterday's mileage was probably close to five.

Saturday, August 4, 2007

Movin on up.

Yesterday, at 5:00 am (GOOD! MORNING!), I met some girlfriends and began a fourteen mile training run.

There is this soreness or tightness that forms in my legs on any runs that are longer than thirteen miles. The soreness that I fel on those runs is similar to the feeling of putting rubber bands on your braces for the first time. My legs can go further, but at the same time I feel like something is restricting them from moving faster; it's probably my mind, right?

I was on the move yesterday because of packing for vacation, and I'm finding that I'm totally beat this evening! The run and the early start time has taken it's toll...

Tomorrow I'd like to do four, but with the way I'm feeling right now...I'm not so sure that I'll be able to drag myself from the bed in the morning.

Thursday, August 2, 2007

Feeling Good

This morning I registered for a 20 miler in September. Oh boy!!??!!

A number of my friends are running this race, as well. No matter how far the distance is, no matter what the elements provide, and no matter how fast we run; we always have fun together! So, even though my toenails will really take a licking and my legs will be sore and achy; I know that I am bound to have fun that morning! Somehow... : )

The run today went well. I went a little bit over the distance for today, but I felt great and didn't run too fast. Tomorrow instead of doing nine, I'm doing fourteen with some training buddies. We decided that since many of us are going on vacation, we are going to flip the long runs for the next two weeks. So, instead of having to do fourteen before I come home from the beach next week; I will just need to run nine. I definitely like that idea, even though I'm going to be beat tomorrow evening! (We're starting the run at 5am. Uggh.)