Wednesday, December 31, 2014

2014 in Review

Total miles ran in 2014: 566.59

One last number for you!

Believe it or not, 2014 was the first year I tracked mileage for the whole year so I have nothing to compare that to.  I set a goal of 500 miles in 2013 and then abandoned that when I found out I was pregnant with #2.  Considering 2014 was year 1 of baby #2's life, it all comes full circle.  (It's Nothing like Erica's 2200+!)

I don't have a numerical goal for 2015.  Obviously I want to qualify for the Boston Marathon.  Hopefully that goal is crossed off on May 2.  If that happens, I will come up with a new goal for the second half of the year.  If not, the goal remains!

Happy New Year! 

Monday, December 29, 2014

TBT in Review

My official marathon training plan begins today (December 29).  I reviewed my 2014 mileage in early November and decided that I needed to have a pre-training plan training plan ("Training Before the Training" or TBT) to ramp up my mileage.  I set a goal number of miles to run for each week of the TBT period.

My 8 week TBT plan was overall a success, despite getting sick 2x in that time frame, having a nagging foot issue, and working around the holidays.  I only met my goal mileage for 4 of the 8 weeks, but I doubled my average number of miles run per week and upped my long run and average length of the run.  I also added a full run/week.

Goal miles for TBT period:  195.7
Total Miles Run in the TBT time period:  169.51 (86.6% of my goal)
Number of weeks I met my goal mileage:  4 (50%)

Average number of runs/week:  3.5   (Compared to 2.3 in previous 2014 review)
Average number of miles/week:  21.19  (Compared to 10.3)
Average length of a run:  6.02   (Compared to 4.36)
Shortest run: 1.05 miles (Compared to 1.49)
Longest run: 12.01 miles (Compared to 9)

Here is the pace of every run of the TBT time period

1.     6:59
2.     8:00
3.     7:07
4.     7:08
5.     7:24
6.     7:16
7.     7:21
8.     7:18
9.     7:30
10.    7:30
11.    7:24
12.    7:16
13.    7:27
14.    7:14
15.    7:49
16.    7:02
17.    7:14
18.    7:25
19.    7:34
20.    7:33
21.    7:11
22.    7:23
23.    7:08
24.    7:01
25.    7:24
26.    6:59
27.    7:20
28.    7:19

Garmin tells me that the average pace of all running done in my TBT period was 8.2 mph or 7:19 per mile.  Based on this, I am keeping my marathon goal pace for training at 7:30.

Final week of Training Before the Training Recap

Goal mileage for 12/21 - 12/27:  31.4 miles
Actual mileage for 12/21 - 12/27:  25.99 miles (82.8% of goal)

While my mileage is lower than the goal, I am still satisfied with last week's training given that it was a holiday week.  Christmas time for us is a zoo so the fact that I got a good mid-distance tempo run and a long run in is a miracle in itself.  We had very mild winter weather last week which always helps in the outdoor running department!

Wednesday 12/24: 8.23 miles, 57:32 (6:59 pace).  I felt really great during this run, as is reflected by my pace.  This now is the fastest 10K record holder in my Garmin log.

Friday 12/26: 5.75 miles, 42:08 (7:20 pace).  Nothing really stands out with this run.

Saturday 12/27: 12.01 miles, 1:27:46 (7:19 pace).  During this run, I started equating long runs with pregnancy.  (I know - wackadoo).  The first part I hate, the second part is glorious, the last "trimester" is a mix.  It takes me several miles to get into a groove where I don't want to quit.  But I wanted to get to 12 miles by the end of my training before the training session and I did it.  Here is my mile by mile breakdown:

Mile 1: 7:19
Mile 2: 7:29
Mile 3: 7:24
Mile 4: 7:24
Mile 5: 7:03
Mile 6: 7:24
Mile 7: 7:15
Mile 8: 7:13
Mile 9: 7:19
Mile 10: 7:16
Mile 11: 7:14
Mile 12: 7:21

That concludes my 8 week training before the training plan!  A recap of the last 8 weeks will be up next!

Friday, December 26, 2014

Marathon Training Plan Description

The marathon training plan that I am using starting Sunday (12/28) is the Marathon: Own It plan from Train Like a Mother.  Description of the plan is as follows:

"Best for: Another mother runner who has at least one marathon under her shoes, has done speedwork in the past, and has pinned on a race number (for a range of race distances) fairly consistently for the past 2 years.

Physical Prereq: You should be able to rip off a 10-mile run without it being too much of a hiccup in your life or on your legs.

Plan Overview: This is a fairly serious, intense plan that can get you a BQ or a significant PR, and with either, some heart-swelling satisfaction. Over the course of 18 weeks, you'll be running four to five times a week, doing three 20-mile runs, and generally turning into a sleek, fine-tuned running machine."


There are a few concerns I have -

1) "Four to five times a week":  My TBT time demonstrated that four runs/week is optimal for me with everything else going on.  The plan is set up for 5 days/week with one day/week being the "if the universe is suddenly conspiring against you getting your run done, skip it - and don't sweat it" run.  I'm not sure if it is good or bad that I am already planning on skipping those.

2) "Doing three 20-mile runs":  I have run 5 marathons, including Boston.  In the course of training for those, I never ran 20 miles more than one time.  20 miles is a.lot.

3) Week 1 long run is 12 miles.  IN WEEK 1!

I am fully aware that this plan may be more than I can hack at this stage.  My plan is to try it for a month and re-evaluate.  I may need to downgrade to the Marathon: Finish It plan from the same book:

"Best for: Injury-free runners with four-plus relatively clear months who are ready to check a 26.2 mile race off their bucket lists.

Physical Prereq: Before stepping up to this plan, mother runners should have logged at least 9-12 months of week-in, week-out running, along with some experience stepping up to a race starting line.  You should be able to run 8 miles comfortably and have no current shin splints, IT band issues, or other maladies.

Plan Overview: We're not gonna lie: Training for a marathon is a big deal, but this plan makes the path to it seem manageable.  Training to cover 26.2 miles requires commitment, especially for the weekly long runs.  On this [20 week] plan, you'll do seven runs that are 15 or more miles long."

With each training recap, I will review what the plan says and then what actually occurred, similar to my TBT recaps.

Sunday, December 21, 2014

Training Before the Training Week 7 Recap

Goal mileage for 12/14 - 12/20: 28.5 miles
Actual mileage for 12/14 - 12/20: 23.59 (83% of goal)

Confession - the above total mileage is a slight fudge as I did my long run today (Sunday, 12/21) instead of 12/20.

Last week was a whirlwind.  I had a busy week at work in addition to one kid with an ear infection, another with a fever/sore throat/cough, a sick husband and by week's end, I too was sick. Add on a Christmas Pageant at church, a holiday party at daycare, the annual holiday book club get together and a performance of the Nutcracker.  Running was far from a priority, although it was a mild week weather-wise so the times that I did get out were great.

Tuesday 12/16:  1 hour power yoga and 6.01 miles, 42:52 (7:08 pace).  I ordered a pair of Saucony Triumphs and took them for their inaugural run.  They felt good, although my foot/ankle was nagging.  I used my knuckle lights too and really like them.  I still don't love running in the dark, but the lights definitely help.

Friday 12/19: 6.2 miles, 43:32 (7.01 pace).  This run holds the 10K fastest pace record on my Garmin!  Another run in my Triumphs. It took a few miles for my foot/ankle to get into the groove.

Sunday 12/21: 11.37 miles, 1:24:04 (7:24 pace).  I ran on the Bugline Trail for part of this so that was fun.  Unfortunately had some GI issues so had to make a pit stop in a DQ on the way back since the restrooms along the trail that I use are all locked for the winter.  GRRR!  It will be obvious which two miles I was doing the stop and bathroom check when looking at my paces below! I am still doing my long runs in my Asics.

Mile 1: 7:09
Mile 2: 7:23
Mile 3: 7:33
Mile 4: 7:21
Mile 5: 7:13
Mile 6: 7:20
Mile 7: 7:10
Mile 8: 7:43
Mile 9: 7:14
Mile 10: 7:54
Mile 11: 7:22
Mile 12: 7:20

So you can see that if I had run one more day, I likely would have made my goal mileage. I actually feel good about this week even if it didn't meet my goal.  (A good reflection on missing training for moments was written by an old high school classmate of mine here.)

This week we are celebrating Christmas!  Which means that I likely won't hit my mileage goal.  This week is also the last week of "Training Before the Training" since my marathon plan begins 12/28!

Goal mileage for 12/21 - 12:27: 31.4 miles

Monday, December 15, 2014

Training before the Training Week 6 Recap

Goal mileage for 12/7 - 12/13: 25.9 miles
Actual mileage for 12/7 - 12/13: 26.06 miles (101% of goal)

Yay! Goal mileage met.  However, it wasn't easy.  I felt very sluggish and off all last week.  I'm sure it didn't help that I was on a business trip for the first half of the week and not eating my usual food, sitting 11 hours a day in a conference room. Three of the four runs also took place in the morning and I am not a big morning run person.  I feel like I don't have enough gas in the tank for morning runs.

I took Sunday off because I flew out that afternoon and my legs felt tired from Saturday's long run.  I was in Atlanta Sunday night - Wednesday afternoon and thought I could easily get a run in all three days since I didn't have family responsibilities.  WRONG.

Monday 12/8:  4.58 miles, 34:39 (7:34 pace).  I felt like a slug.  This run took place at 5:30 AM EST, which is 4:30 to my central time zone dwelling body.  I was thinking that since I was going to the eastern time zone, that it wouldn't be as dark in the morning, but neglected to take geography into account.  Point being - it was way early, and pitch black the entire run.  Atlanta isn't known for having smooth sidewalks people!

Tuesday 12/9: 4.64 miles, 35:01 (7:33 pace).  Lawdy I was TIR-ED.  This time I tried running AFTER my meetings and still was battling lack of light.  I really wanted to run at Lullwater on the Emory campus but it was NOT well lit so as the minutes went by and it got darker and darker, I gave up and went back to the hotel, even though I had wanted to do 6 miles. My shoes (Mizunos) felt like they were rubbing my right ankle in a weird spot. Since I was still away, I didn't make it to my usual Tuesday Power Yoga class.

Wednesday 12/10: 0 miles - I set my alarm to get in a run before my meetings, but slept through it.  ZONKED.  The good news is I flew back home Wednesday afternoon.

Friday 12/12: 5.62 miles, 40:24 (7:11 pace).  I headed out in my Mizunos and it still felt like my shoe was rubbing my ankle weird so I turned around to switch to my Asics. Although my pace was good, I still felt tired. (I know, I'm starting to sound like a broken record.) I'm starting to feel like I should give up on the Mizunos.  I have 58.01 miles on them and still am not the biggest fan.

Saturday 12/13: 11.22 miles, 1:22:55 (7:23 pace).  I am really proud of this run.  Whereas during last week Saturday's long run I felt great, this one was the complete opposite.  I had a bad attitude towards it before I even left my house.  I knew I had to get to 11 miles to meet the week's goal because every other run this week was shortchanged.  Even though it was only .75 miles more than last week's long run, 11 miles felt so LONG to me.  My thoughts were along the lines of "Why am I running a marathon again? I don't even like the marathon".  I ended up getting dressed and out the front door.  I did the first section of my planned route (~2.25 miles) and switched routes to running laps around the pond in our neighborhood so that I could bail early.  My legs felt so stiff and heavy.  I thought, "I just have to get to 6 miles.  I will quit at 6 miles".  And then 6 miles came and I thought, "I can do one more." and that was how it went until around 8.5 miles when a man walking his dog asked me "How far do you run in a day?" and I responded, "Today is my long day so I'm going 11 miles."  That was when I knew I would finish it.  Unfortunately my right ankle/foot area (same area that I have been having issues with) has been sore since.  Here is the mile by mile pace breakdown:

Mile 1: 7:26
Mile 2: 7:26
Mile 3: 7:31
Mile 4: 7:27
Mile 5: 7:21
Mile 6: 7:31
Mile 7: 7:24
Mile 8: 7:20
Mile 9: 7:18
Mile 10: 7:23
Mile 11: 7:16
Mile 12: 6.59

Last week's mileage put me over the 500 mile mark for the year!

Goal mileage for 12/14-12/20: 28.5 miles

Monday, December 8, 2014

Training Before the Training Week 5 Review

Goal mileage for 11/30 - 12/6: 25.9 miles
Actual mileage for 11/30 - 12/6: 27.65 miles (107% of goal)

Woohoo! I was happy to have a good week of training after last week's setback.  

Sunday 11/30: 5.66 miles, 40:42 (7:14 pace).  Unremarkable run. Felt decent, no back problems, stomach not too bothersome.

Tuesday 12/2: 1 hour Power Yoga and 1.05 miles, 8:11(7:49 pace). So yoga worked wonders on my back...lots of twisting helped tremendously. Unfortunately by the time I got outdoors for my run, it had been snowing and after I almost fell flat on my face from slippery footing, I yelled eff this and went back inside. I did use the knuckle lights for that mile and they worked great!

Thursday 12/4: 6.04 miles, 42:30 (7:02 pace). I ran at work again which really is optimal on so many levels for me. I saw two hawks on my run which pumped me up. I felt great during this run!

Friday 12/5: 4.61 miles, 33:21 (7:14 pace). This was a morning run squeezed in before my husband left for work. I really dislike morning runs except for when they are done. My legs felt tired. I did eat a caffeinated picky bar pre-run which worked well.

Saturday 12/6: 10.29 miles, 1:16:13 (7:25 pace). You read that right - double digits!! This is the current "longest run" record on my Garmin. I really enjoyed this run. I headed out thinking that I wanted to do 8 miles but 10 were needed to hit my goal, so anywhere in that range would have satisfied me. I did better with pacing...likely my legs were still tired from two days before this.  Here is my mile by mile breakdown:

Mile 1: 7:11
Mile 2: 7:30
Mile 3: 7:30
Mile 4: 7:43
Mile 5: 7:21
Mile 6: 7:22
Mile 7:  7:30
Mile 8: 7:22
Mile 9: 7:25
Mile 10: 7:15
Mile 11: 7:14

Goal for 12/7-12/13: 25.9 miles. I'll be in Atlanta for work for 3 days so hoping to get some runs in then!

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Training before the Training Week 4 Review

Goal mileage for 11/23 - 11/29: 23.6 miles
Actual mileage for 11/23 - 11/29: 9.11 miles (38.6% of goal)

Well.  Last week, from what I remember, wasn't that hot.

My stomach wasn't quite right during last week's long run on Saturday.  The feeling continued on Sunday and Monday so I didn't run those days.  Tuesday morning I woke up with some nausea, which I thought would get better once I ate something.  (I felt like I was in the early stages of pregnancy - yes, that kind of nausea.)  Due to the holiday week, I did not have my usual power yoga class on Tuesday at noon so I brought running stuff to the office to get a run in during that time.

Tuesday (11/25):  5.11 miles, 37:04 (7:16 pace)  I didn't feel great during this run but not awful.  I was more concerned about my footing because I had run on some trails near my office that were slippery in spots.

I got back to my desk post-run, ate some lunch and boom.  I had to go home. STAT.

I spent the remainder of the afterrnoon and evening and the next day under a duvet, freezing with nausea and body aches.

I started to feel marginally better on Thursday morning (my husband went down Wednesday around midnight) and I got out of the shower, went to put on body lotion and WHAM.  My back was out. (More specifically my lower back, butt and hip area on my left side.)  This made trying to pick up my almost-one year old son who weighs close to 30 lbs slightly difficult!  Luckily my aunt is a massage therapist and we had Thanksgiving at her house on Friday so she worked on it a bit.  (Gluteus medius and QL muscles, specifically.)

Saturday 11/29: 4 miles, 29:51 (7:27 pace).  I pushed myself to do this because I was literally sick of being cooped up in the house.  I was crabby.  For the good of my family, I had to run.  My back did not bother me at all while running - phew, however I still wasn't feeling 100% in the stomach arena.  Unfortunately my back is still bothering me, particularly when I change positions (e.g. sitting to standing).

So there you have it.  Not the best week for much of anything, least of all running.

Goal mileage for 11/30 - 12/6: 25.9 miles.  Wish me luck!