Tuesday, November 29, 2016

My Racing Month


I am linking up with with PattyErika, and Marcia!

I have some unfinished business.  My racing month.

I had lots of plans last year before my feet melted down. 

This past April I had picked my races and hoped to become a member of the Half Fanatics and possibly Saturn my way in...but when April rolled around, I was still limping.

I have tagged several events to my calendar for April 2017 in hopes I can do it!
I would run a race every weekend! Wooohoo! 

Since I started running, I have always wanted to run the half marathon in Roanoke, As a new runner, I was intimidated by the 1900 ft. elevation gain, and wondered how long it would take me. I am in a good place now to go and just enjoy the challenge! I know better than to put a time on something like that :)

I hope this Spring I get to fulfill my racing month dream, and that tough course will be one of those races!

Have you ever done any super hilly races?
Run the Blue Ridge half marathon? 
What is your longest streak of races?

Monday, November 28, 2016

Still Recovering

Walking 4.5 mi
Run 2 mi
Walking 1 mi
Running 8 mi
Interval run  5K
Walking 1 mi
Circuit workout 75 min.
Walking 2 mi
Running 6 mi

I am trying to get back to a regular routine now. It has been 16 days since I ran my first marathon as I post this, and recovery has been up and down for sure. I just feel off. I feel better one minute and then feel like a bus ran over me the next.  I am surprised by how fatigued my legs continue to be.
Sunday morning was a struggle bus of a run for sure, I actually ran 3 miles, walked a while, then ran 3 more.
I just have to ride it out and hope I feel normal again one day soon!
I feel better when I look at my happy race pictures. It also reminds me it was a long time run, and that I need patience. lol

In the meantime, my weight loss has quickly slipped away. I have already gained most of  what I lost for the race, back.
It is annoying yoyoing all the time, so I am going to try to rally and see if I can get back on track. This time of year is challenging!

I spent most of my adult years under 130 lbs. after gaining and losing a huge clump (45 lbs. or so) in my youth, and again after I had my son...like 75 lbs. worth...

The struggle started for real about age 45.

I have hit my goal weight (135) several times, but I only hang on to it for minutes, before the yo yo starts.   Eventually I just give up, eat when I am hungry, and I always end up back around 140 lbs. It doesn't seem to matter how much weight training, cardio or running, it is really all about diet for me.

Losing during this training cycle was a big challenge.

About 7 weeks into training I had been trying to eat healthier, add more veggies,  be more intentional about taking in protein after runs, etc…
But my scale was not budging. I was still topping out over 140 lbs.

As training progressed I really wanted to give myself the best chance for a strong performance and started eating more salad at lunch every day, but the scale still barely budged. 
Then the craziest thing happened!

I got food poisoning September 15th and wa lah! I ejected every bit of food and fluid in my system and I came out 4 lbs. lighter a few days later. I fully expected to gain every bit of that back as soon as I started eating and drinking, but I never really did. Which I thought was nuts!!
Maybe it was coincidental…that my weight loss finally kicked in around the same time.

I finally got right under my goal weight about a week before the race.

I do not pretend to understand input verses output and how my slow thyroid impacts the weight loss process but it is not easy, even with all the miles, I still had to stay under 1300 calories a day on a regular basis.

I felt awesome to accomplish my mission, but it didn't help my marathon performance at all...UGH! Oh. well. I felt great, for a short time anyway.

The week before the race we went on vacation, and while I still chose relativity healthy things, I let go of the really stringent numbers. It has only been a few weeks since the race and the scale is already climbing up...fast! 

It boggles my brain how fast I can gain. 

My motivation to stay on track has waned a few times. The holiday treats are already becoming a challenge.

Over the past week, I enjoyed reasonable portions of sweet potato casserole, peanut butter chocolate cake, I had a fudge cookie...yes, just one, and a few cocktails...and I want to be able to do that, but I also hate to throw away all my hard work. I am going to try to get back on track this week! Time for more salad...

Are the holidays hard for you to maintain your happy weight? 

I am linking up with my awesome running gal pals for the Weekly Wrap!

Join in the fun! with Holly @ hohoruns and Tricia@ MissSippiPiddlin  

Tuesday, November 22, 2016


I have been recovering from my first full marathon on November 12th. 

I expected to be sore, but I feel like I am recovering slow...

After the race, I took the slowest walk to my car EVER. Okay, more like shuffling.  I tried to bend over, touch my toes (ROTFL), and stretch for a minute before I sat in my car. Strange stuff was happening in my legs, and I was not close to my toes ¯\_()_/¯

I took the hottest shower ever when I arrived at home...I stayed in till there wasn't a drop of hot water left.   I felt chilled all evening. I do not usually struggle with being chilly unless I am digesting. My body temp was just off all day after the race.

I didn't have much appetite, but I did eat a good meal and a few bananas (bahahah) and then I just bundled up and was lazy. Bananas, if you read my last post, you know I needed them before the race!!
Anyway, I did some light housework but it didn't last long. My feet, both of them, swelled and were tender. As far as muscles, I had one spot on the outside of my right thigh that was super sore.  My iliotibial band in the upper area very close to my hip area. I was super stiff that evening. 

Sunday I remained sore and but i could go up and down the stairs okay. I really wanted to take a walk, but I ended up sleeping for a good bit of the afternoon, and we went to ❤ Garth Brooks Sunday night! He is so awesome :)

Monday it was raining :( I desperately wanted to take a walk, but it was too blah out.

Tuesday - zip. Just eating...ugh...(•~•)

Whew! At first I was okay being lazy, but lying around Sunday, Monday, and Tuesday had my mind on the decline! Big time! LOL My brain is a mess without exercise!

Wednesday I did our circuit  session at work  and then "ran" a mile. My legs ached. Too soon. 

It was also the first day I was ravenous, craving nuts, and just had to eat. No calorie counting that day! I've had a few  a bunch of those non-calorie counting days. I've tried to make healthy choices, but I slipped quite a bit since vacation (the week before the race). 

Wednesday and Thursday I rode my bike, but man did my tushie hurt by the second ride. I actually had to get off and walk my bike a bit.

I felt like I was fighting something off more than once throughout the week and Friday I woke up in full blown cold mode. Nice obnoxious sneezing…achy, burning cheeks, you know the whole shabang! and I still don't feel 100%. 

I think the race caught up to me. 

Friday, I just felt so sick I was a mess. I crave sweets and more food in general when I don't feel well, I have always been that way. I try to avoid sugar when I don't feel well, but it is weird that is the one time I really want it! 

Saturday I took medicine and went to the gym and got a decent light lifting session done. I felt great on the arc machine but didn't want to overdo it so I kept it short. I tried to stretch and realized how crazy tight my legs were even though they weren't hurting.

Sunday I finally got the walk I wanted! I was working the hills, I admit, after my first mile  I turned it into a progression walk LOL

I was trying to better each mile...seriously, it is a sickness. Why can't I just relax? LOL   I did try to run a few steps, like maybe 12 steps and could feel the fatigue and soreness rolling in both hamstrings...I decided I was not quite ready yet, and shut it down fast.  I don't want to push.
I came home and stretched for about 20 minutes and felt much better. I could feel this walk in my gluteus the next day! But in a good way.

I chilled Monday, really trying to ease back into activity...

So far the ache I felt in my left shin is lessening...I think it may have been part of the normal healing process (??) but it did feel unique to the muscles soreness I felt in my hammies and illotorial band. I guess time will tell...

So, I am 10 days without running so far! I am wondering how long it will take.  I have a half marathon to run on Dec. 3rd and I hoped to run one Nov. 27th...and I really thought that would be doable, but now I am just hoping I get to run a few steps.

How long will it take!!?? 

Oh well, I  plan on walking later today :)

Have a wonderful Thanksgiving, holiday break, black Friday shopping, whatever it is you are doing! Tell me your plans!! 

Mucho love, 

Sunday, November 20, 2016

Reflecting Back…what I learned about training and my first marathon

Reflecting back on my first marathon and training experience, I have lots of things I am proud of and a handful of things I really regret. These are a few random musings. 

I am linking up with my awesome running gal pals for the Weekly Wrap!

Join in with Holly @ hohoruns and Tricia@ MissSippiPiddlin  

♦️ I wish when I stopped at the grocery store Friday night before my marathon, they had some bananas!  It is the reason I stopped.  All the bananas were super green and I ended up not buying any…
I regret not trying another grocery store. 
If only I could eaten a few race morning it may have changed the whole outcome of the day.

♦️ I wish I would have felt more motivated to cross train more! The last several weeks of training I just didn't have it in me to get on my bike, or strength train the way I should. I did really well until week 11 or 12 (I can’t remember exactly) and then I did minimal effort. I wish I would have done more.  

♦️ I did two steady runs and one run with intervals each week. I stuck to that formula most weeks, but I did mix things up a few times (intervals vs. steady runs) based on how my foot was feeling.

♦️ I feel very confident now that intervals build endurance well as steady runs. 

♦️ I do feel like muscle recovery is easier using intervals. 

♦️ My 20 miler and a 14 miler I did as steady runs, every other long run was intervals. 

♦️ I admit, I questioned if intervals would make me feel as strong as steady running when I started this…but I ran 20 miles after doing the majority of long runs with intervals and did really well. If I had healthy feet I would have been okay! I would say to anyone worried about injury while training for the marathon distance, you should at least consider using intervals for long runs. 

♦️ I used intervals because my left foot would get too sore running without stopping, intervals were the perfect way to keep my foot from getting re-injured and keep the discomfort at a manageable level. 

♦️ As far as training goes, I think my one major snafu was the week after my 20 miler.  I misjudged how much recovery I needed. I got caught up in ...if I miss something I won't be strong enough mindset. 

Hindsight is 20/20
♦️ I do not believe the 20 miler did me in. I was sore and fatigued after, but not aching. I did bounce back …however, the two runs I pushed out after that shredded my legs in way I have never experienced. I was so sore and achy, and never fully recovered by marathon day. Looking back, I wish I would have stuck to really easy runs the week after my 20.  If I had waited a week to do my last speed work session maybe my legs may have recovered and felt fresher for the race. This kills me every. darn. time. I think about it...

♦️ I have been feeling a twinge in my left shin since the race that makes me nervous, so I still have run since November 12th. Just one mile last week to test things. Since I've had a tibial stress fracture in the past, I can't help but worry
wouldn'describe the twinge as pain, just a pinch. I felt a pinch on one of my bike rides, I felt it walking at the grocery store, however, I did not feel a thing when I was on the arc machine, weight lifting, or walking.  The ache is very random...I am not sure if I am over thinking this. Maybe this is normal after a marathon ??? Maybe I just tweaked something that needs a little more recovery...I have no idea.

♦️ If I do have something brewing in that leg, my guess is it happened the week after my 20 miler. It would also totally explain why I could not generate any power in my legs for the race.  When I had the stress fracture a few years ago, I barely had pain. I struggled with my legs feeling heavy and my pace for almost a month, before I was diagnosed. 

♦️ I will do a post soon, with more details about how recovery is going. 

♦️ I’ll paste my training mileage at the end of the post for anyone curious. I did 8 weeks of base building and then started my 16 week plan. I cut my mileage quite a bit in the beginning weeks because of pain with my feet.  In the end, I don't feel like the miles I missed really hurt me. 

♦️ Even though I did miss a few runs and cut a few miles from time to time, my training was solid. Running three days a week worked! 

♦️ I tried to sneak in a fourth run a few times …because I love to run, …but honestly, I felt better with just three runs. I admit, it still makes me a bit sad I can’t lace up whenever the urge strikes.

Richmond Plan
WK 1


WK 2


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WK 6

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WK 9



WK 10

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WK 12

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WK 14


WK 15


WK 16


Have you lost sleep over decisions, or any one decision you made in training?! 
Do you reflect back to enjoy memories, or think about what you wish you could change? 
Any thoughts about intervals you want to share?