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Sunday, July 25, 2010

Motivational Bull

I've heard other runners make quotations such as "I didn't feel like running but I know I'd feel worse if I didn't run." As if to say there's nothing in life worse than a missed run. I understand the thinking, the motivation factor behind sayings like these but I'm here to declare to the world that some runs are just crap.

Such as Saturday's run in the heat and humidity. I had to miss last week since the husband was out of town and I also had to work that morning. Last week it was like 70 degrees in the morning and just gorgeous outside. Figures.

You know what this weekend looked like. I got out of the house and to the warm-up and was sweaty already even though I picked a spot in the shade. I stayed at the back of the group because I did not want to run at any kind of pace that would keep me somewhat close to the front. At first I was in good company but then we lost the 10k training group and I was on my own and kept getting slower and slower. At the end there was only 1 girl and the two walkers behind me. If we went a full 7 miles then my pace was right at 12 mm but it felt slower than that so maybe we were a bit short again.

I really was ticked throughout the run because they chose a route that was way more sun than shade. There's plenty of options for more shaded places so I don't know what they were thinking. I also started thinking (which actually I've been thinking for a couple of weeks) that I was paying $75 for this plan and all I was getting out of it were group runs where I ran more on my own than with a group. I mean the weekly plan I can get from Runner's World Smart Coach and there hasn't been anything else that's actually individualized for me. They've had a couple of seminars at times where I can't make it. So really, for the $ I'm not impressed at all. I could have paid $75 for a session or two with a trainer and gotten more info.

At the end the only thing that got me to finish was that I knew there were cold towels waiting. I skipped out of the post run stretches and went home to a cold shower and 3 ibuprofen. I wasn't proud that I finished the run. I wasn't glad that I kept up with the schedule - I just thought, "what a #$*&y run."

But I know some runs are crappy. Thankfully it's only some and not all. And in another month and a half it will feel great outside again. July can't last forever.

Friday, July 23, 2010

The definition of hot is?

Gross =
This will be for Saturday's group long run of 7 miles. This morning it was already 85 by 8 a.m. and it will be hotter tomorrow. The local news stations are actually predicting 100 for the high tomorrow. If they (the group) want to keep a 10 mm pace I might be forced to wear a scowl the whole entire time.

I did most of my speed work yesterday evening (when it was still 93 outside). I did 4x400 at a 8:00-8:30 pace but then joined a friend in her C25K routine which was 90 sec runs and 2 min walks. So I definitely got in more than the required distance but those 90 sec runs felt like more of a 10-10:30 pace. But it was NASTY hot and humid outside and I was zonked after the 4x400 (probably still recovering from giving blood and I did have a stomach full of dinner) so I'm calling it good.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

I'm not dead yet. Or: I did it for the cookies.

Thank God I feel better today (and no one clubbed me over the head yesterday though my husband may have been tempted).

I woke up like this:


(Make sure you sing along with the bouncing ears!)

Maybe it was just a round of really evil PMS. I did my planned 4 miles but had to break it up to make it more interesting since I was inside again. So after the first mile I would increase the incline by .5 for every .05 of a mile up to a half mile and then back down again in the same increments. It made the mile go by less tediously but did produce more sweat. The last 1.5 miles was done on the indoor track.

After that I went and did my civic duty by donating blood. I hoped I wouldn't faint since I was jumping from running to donating but I did fine and enjoyed the cookies afterwards. Mmmm chocolate chip.

Tomorrow speed work! Everything is satisfactual.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

My body hates me.

What is wrong with me?

For more than a week I've been overly tired, cramping, pissy, and my back has hurt. Yes, all normal things for PMS but I shouldn't be there yet. No, I'm not pregnant nor going through early menopause (at the tender age of 32). But I AM really sick of feeling crappy.

I didn't get my long run in on Sunday because I felt like horse manure all day. I barely got up enough energy to go to the grocery store and that was only because the kids were threatening to revolt if we didn't feed them.

This week's plan called for a 4 mile easy run on Monday and I did force myself over to the rec center despite still feeling like a run-over frog. I thought, "hey isn't running supposed to make you feel better sometimes?" So I got my four miles in with steady 10 mm splits and felt pretty good the whole time. But about an hour or so afterward I felt worse and my back was much worse.

Today I'm laid up at my house and still wondering when I'm going to feel better.

But here's the results for last week (for my memory more than anything else):
Monday and Tuesday - made excuses not to exercise
Wednesday - easy 3.25 miles
Thursday - speed work 6x400. My sprints were at 6.7-7.0 on the treadmill (which is 8:34-7:57 mm) with 1-2 minute walks inbetween sprints. Total time was 25 minutes (included cool down walk at the end) and total mileage was 2 miles.
Friday - nothing because of work
Saturday - 1.25 miles on treadmill and another 25 minutes on the eliptical which said my distance was 2.25 so I "kind of" made up for the miles I should have done on Monday (kind of).
Sunday - should have been a 6.5 mile long run but it never happened.

This week:
Monday: 4 miles easy
Tuesday: cross train (though today it's ended up just being rest because of my back issues)
Wednesday: 4 miles easy
Thursday: 7x400
Friday: Rest
Saturday: 7 mile long run
Sunday: cross train

We'll just have to see how it goes.

Friday, July 16, 2010

Shorts are the enemy

A couple weeks back I won a free sample of Lanacane's Anti-Chaffing Gel on Secrets of a Running Mom's blog. I received it and it sat on my counter for a few days but last night I finally got around to shaving my legs and I planned on taking shorts to the rec center today to test it out.

They didn't ask me to review the product when I won it but I thought I would anyway. Because I like my own opinion. But if you also like to hear other's opinions you can read some other reviews on these blogs: Secrets of a Running Mom or from Chubby Chicks Run Too. I'm sure there's other ones out there since Lanacane seems to be on a marketing blitz.

But first here's the Haiku that helped me win (actually it was a random drawing but I'd like to think it was helped because of my wit and comedic styling):


Heat Index One-Ten
Mocked for Wearing Capri Tights
Thighs too fat for shorts

Seriously where's my book deal?


True story. I was mocked for wearing capri tights only the blogger didn't single me out - rather any female at the RC Cola Moon Pie race that wasn't wearing shorts. Now I agree that due to the heat shorts make more sense but I friggin' hate shorts while running. They ride up in the middle, I always feel like my butt is about to be exposed, and my chubby thighs rub and rub until they feel on fire. Since I've never actually tried any other anti-chaffing product (such as BodyGel or that other one that has something to do with cow udders....) this was truly an experiment.

And it was a dismal failure.

I first put on the Lanacane before going to work since I was wearing a skirt today (shaving my legs opened up a whole new wardrobe of bigger sized clothes that didn't make me feel horrifically fat) and it's hot - high 90's with humidity, LOVE THE SOUTH!

For that purpose the Lanacane worked great. I reapplied before working out. I did speed work and cursed my shorts every time I did my 1/4 mile sprints (well sprints to me). Really I was glad that there was no one behind me because I swear those shorts were flying up to show my undies whenever they weren't riding up in the middle.

But I could feel the chaffing starting so the gel didn't last the whole workout. Seeing how it was only 25 minutes and 2 miles (6x400 with short walking breaks in between and at the end to cool down) this is not enough to make me wear shorts in the summer. I'll stick to my capris and feel confident that my rear is covered and the skin doesn't rub. Thankfully I have no other chaffing issues.

But I will keep the Lanacane and use it on those hot days when I wear skirts. Like Carly at Chubby Chicks I too think that this product is better used for daily activites rather than sports.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

More than bloated

So yesterday all my pants were tight. Not a good sign. I eventually put on a pair that used to be big on me and tried to suck it in all day - and obviously felt miserable all day as well. But it was enough motivation to get me to the rec center for my run (I skipped Monday's and Tuesday's workouts AGAIN). And also to get me back on the scale this morning.

I've gained 5 lbs in the last month. Ridiculous. There are a couple of factors that go into this.
  1. My diet has been crap and my only workouts have been long runs. Since my diet is crap my calories are not equaling out. Thus I gain weight but still it shouldn't have been 5 lbs in a month.
  2. Summer is a horrible time for me to fit in workouts. My husband was gone for a month, work is busier thus eliminating lunch workouts, I had family visiting for two weeks, and I don't wake up early before it gets miserably hot. I could go on and on. There's something about winter that just makes it easier for me to exercise.
  3. I'm back on hypo-thyroid medication. For normal people this should mean losing weight and feeling better but whenever I take meds for thyroid I feel worse. I just got new blood work done this week so there might be medication adjustments in front of me.
  4. I'm very crampy so I think there is some bloating issues too. Sometimes it's hard to be a woman... For the paranoid people out there (me included) I did take a pregnancy test which was negative so I can't blame that.

So I need to go back to being strict on my diet and better about exercising. Back in April I got so sick of dieting that I started to relax some with the idea that my exercise would balance out any indulgences and I was fine with just maintaining. Well that worked out so well that I've gained a total of 10 lbs back since then. I can't say that I'm excited about going back to a strict diet but I also want my pants to fit so I've got to do what I need to do.

Today is speed work and I'm thinking of also doing a ultimate sculpt class. Since my long run will be on Sunday my muscles will have an extra day to recover from the shock of doing squats and lunges again. They get quite lippy towards me whenever I go back to doing squats.

Monday, July 12, 2010

I knew that didn't feel like a 10:30 pace

Week three of training was also derailed by the family visit and insane work environment. Oh well - it's still early on in training. Here's what I ended up doing for the week.

Sunday - Rest/Family time
Monday - Rest/Family time
Tuesday - two mile walk to walk off the Asian Dream cocktails that were consumed on date night with hubby
Wednesday - brought workout clothes to work but was unable to use them
Thursday - 3 mile walk/run with friends that are starting a C25K program. At least I did something
Friday - Crazy, crazy work
Saturday - almost 6 miles with the group

Saturday's long run was interesting. I was not excited about it at all so I arrived in a sour mood. There was fog outside. FOG in July does not invoke visions of a cool and mysterious run but rather it's so freakin' humid that the water droplets have combined forces to make this mist surrounding us that does not cool us off but just makes us wet. But the temps were only in the high 70's so it could have been worse. We started off and were keeping about a 10:30 pace through the first half. I felt ok during that half and enjoyed keeping pace with another gal that is a little faster than me for long runs but close enough that we can keep each other company. But at the halfway point I lost what little oomph I had and struggled through the second half. We got about 3/4 done and hit a hill and from that point forward I was in a very sour mood. But I was met by our peppy coach who forced me to pick up the pace for the last 100 yards or so (it was a good thing actually because it changed my mood entirely). I looked at my watch which said 1:03 and I just knew that we didn't go a full 6 miles because there was no way I kept the 10:30 pace for the entire run. The second half was just too sluggish plus I walked for a couple of minutes. I later learned we only went about 5.7 miles. Oh well - for a moment I had visions of finishing the half in under 2:10.

I really do aim to keep on track this week. Here's the schedule:
Monday - 3.5 miles easy (will do on treadmill)
Tuesday - cross train
Wednesday - 3.5 miles easy (indoor track or treadmill)
Thursday - speed 6x400 (treadmill)
Friday - rest
Saturday - skipping group run because I have to work
Sunday - solo long run 6.5 miles

I need to get signed up for my next two races - a 5k and 10k. I hope to run/walk the 5k with friends so I'm not going for any kind of time or PR there but the 10k will be a trial for my pace at the half. Last year I did a 10k at a 10:30 pace but since I've more recently done a 15k at a 10:15 pace I want this 10k to be under 10mm. I've got to do better on my weekly schedule if I'm going to achieve that goal.

Saturday, July 3, 2010

What's more tiring?


A five mile run or taking pictures with your family?

With a cantankerous two year old and a four year old who thought the highlight of the day was lifting up the back of mommy's skirt - I think the photo shoot was the more tiring part of my day.

I haven't done quite as well in week two of training since my family (there's now 10 of us in the house) are in town. I got in one 3 mile run on Wednesday but didn't do any other cross training or speed runs. I have been very active chasing kids and keeping people entertained. So it's not like I've rested up or anything this past week.

I did make sure to join the group run today because there will already be one run I'll have to miss for work in a couple of weekends. It was a decent run. My pace is about the middle of the pack so often I'm still running alone. Today I averaged about 11 minute miles over the course of the whole run. I think I started off closer to 10 and ended at 12 though. :) The weather was much nicer today and even in the sun there was a decent breeze blowing and low humidity. So you can't ask for more on a run in July.

Immediately after the run I rushed home to shower and get kids/husband ready for family pictures with the rest of the crew that's in town. It was then that I realized that the 5 miles were the easy part of my day.