Sunday, January 24, 2010

Mish Mash

Oh, lots to update....

I ran my second half marathon yesterday. For some reason, I was super nervous. Even more nervous than when I ran my first half. I think the main reason was because I went into this one with pretty high expectations. I felt like I had to beat my previous time. Correction.... I felt like I had to smash my last time of 3:01:20. Well, I don't quite feel like I smashed it, but I am happy with my 2:54:31. The hills on the course were INSANE, and I had no idea they would be that bad. Good practice for the full marathon for sure, since I have always been concerned about the hills.

The last couple of weeks, I had been having some foot and leg pain. The side of my foot had been on and off uncomfortable ever since my 10 mile run on the treadmill. And my legs had felt tired and heavy for a week. I was really worried that I was in the midst of a something serious. But I was equally as nervous to back off of training to try and take care of the issue. Luckily neither were an issue this weekend. My legs are a bit sore today, but my foot pain is almost nonexistent.

I also didn't feel like I was mentally prepared for this one. I have talked before about how I don't like to talk about work on my blog, but now it seems almost unavoidable. I found out this week that my position is going to be eliminated in somewhere between 45 to 90 days. While I am upset about the news, having the heads up is a big relief. Also, my company is going to be looking for a different place to put me (of course, no guarantees), but they were kind enough to let me know that if I wanted to start pursuing other positions outside the company they understood.

So I am now actively looking for a new job in what is probably one of the worst times to be looking for one. I am a tad freaked, but again the heads up is nice. I am just going to take it one day at a time and stay positive.

Just so I don't end this on a sad note, I had the absolute best Sunday. Slept in, did some major cleaning, and enjoyed a couple beers and a Sybergs Famous Salad. I sat back and realized I ran another half marathon yesterday. How cool is that!?!

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Another week done!

I am so happy to report that another week of Marathon training is done! This week was definitely the hardest thus far with my total mileage being 21 miles! 21!!!

I can easily say this week had the most difficult long run I've ever done. Because of a negative wind chill on Saturday I chose to do my long run at the gym on the treadmill. I can deal with the treadmill for short runs or kinda long runs of 5-6 miles, but 10 miles is a completely different story. Besides, from Tuesday on I wasn't feeling 100% and I was feeling really nauseous on my runs. Not an ideal combo for sure.

I started the run and managed to keep the first 5 miles at my goal long run pace (13 minute mile) I didn't break intervals once...after that I started feeling not so fab. The gym was on the warm side and I was having some cold sweats while I was burning up. Miles 6 and 7 were a tad slower, but after mile 7 I felt like a train wreck. I had to break intervals and slow my pace, which is a bad combo. I picked up a bit towards the end and did a few sprints like I always try to do, but I didn't have near the energy I normally do.

(This next paragraph is a tad TMI...skip on if needed)

I got off the treadmill and I was soaked. Easily more soaked then when I ran the Half Marathon outside in mid September, and I was wearing the exact same outfit! I had so much sweat dripping down my legs it looked like I had peed all over myself. This has totally happened to me before but I don't think it has ever been so heavy.

But I was done...THANK GOD. I was devastated at my performance. I met up with Nathan just as he was completing his 26 miles on the bike (go Nathan!!!) and I started explaining to him my run. I went from a not devastated place to a mixed feeling place which I am still experiencing.

Here's the deal, for some reason, in my mind I feel like I need to do the marathon in as close to a 13 minute mile pace that I possibly can. Now, I know what all you runners are going to say, that the goal of the first Marathon is to finish. Yes, I get that. But unfortunately, when the race you are running has a 13:45 cut off pace, you have to be concerned about when you are going to finish. Plus, I think that regardless, 99% of Marathon runners give themselves a time goal. I came up with mine because doing a 13 minute mile has enough of a buffer that if something does go wrong like a side stitch or something, I have enough time to pace through it. So if I can't manage the 13 minute mile pace for a 10 mile run, I see a problem. Plus, I didn't even run any hills!

Of course, I do always try to focus on the positive and I certainly see the upside. 10 miles on the treadmill is some tough stuff. And not every run is going to be perfect, so I need to cut myself some freaking slack. My average pace was about 13:30, so I guess you could say it wasn't terrible considering I felt "off" all week.

I guess the jury is still out on this one....

Sunday, January 3, 2010

How could I forget?

I can't believe that in my Week 4 summary I so carelessly brushed over one very important event. While running my midweek "kinda long" run I was doing some wardrobe adjusting and then, "BAM!" I fell on the treadmill. Luckily I had been walking an interval at the time and was able to catch myself before doing a full out body slam on the belt. The gym wasn't very crowded but I am sure at least a couple people noticed. I just kind of shook it off and did my final 1.25 miles.

When I was done I walked up to Nathan on the other side of the gym and told him what had happened. He was quite concerned and said, "Are you okay?"
Me: "Yeah, I'm fine, I caught myself...
Nathan: "Did anyone see you?"
Me: "Well, yeah, I'm sure someone did, but no one ran up to me or anything."
Nathan: "Oh, honey, I'm sorry, you must have been so embarrassed!"
Me: (without skipping a beat) "Embarrassed no, but I'm pissed because I was doing a fast pace and the treadmill reset when I fell!"
Nathan: (laughs) "Only you wouldn't get upset about public humiliation like that and be more concerned about your time."

Hmmm....maybe that's dedication?

Saturday, January 2, 2010

Week 4 is done!

I am so happy to write the title of this post. I knew this week would be a bit of a challenge, particularly with the 9 mile long run.

I pretty much stalk the weather forecast now and all week it seemed like Saturday was going to be pretty cold. As in a high of 20 and a low of 7. Those temperatures scared the bejesus out of me, but I knew that doing 9 miles on the treadmill was doing to be really tough and I knew deep down I needed to get outside and start braving the cold.

All day Friday I was psyching myself up for the run. Nathan was helping and convincing me that it really wouldn't be THAT bad and he would be experiencing it right there with me. Remember in a previous post I mentioned that Nathan was doing a training activity? Well, Nathan decided to take up cycling. When he told me that he was thinking about it I was overjoyed. We have a few friends that love cycling, so I figured that would be one good motivation to continue. The only downside, bikes are EXPENSIVE. My frugal self died a little inside when Nathan went with one of our friends to look at bikes and the one he loved was $500. Of course, I couldn't in good conscience I couldn't object to him getting it. Not only have I easily spent that much on my running habit, but Nathan is working as a DJ so he was been contributing more to our finances lately.

Anyway, after a quick stop to get some cold weather accessories, we set out to put in our mileage. I was running 9 and Nathan planned on biking 25. As I started I was cold, but not miserable. The only part of me that was really freezing was my lips and nose. After a couple of miles I was cold, but managed to stay comfortable. The only really tough part is that for the entire run my legs felt heavy due to the cold. I did my full 9 miles, and Nathan made it 15 (25 was a little ambitious IMO).

Yesterday was definitely a challenge, but I feel really good about the run overall. My average pace was 12:48, which is great because I try to keep my long runs at about 13 minutes per mile. And I ran 19 miles this week, which is exciting in itself.

Week 5 is two 3 mile runs, a 5 mile run, a 10 mile run, and cross training. Like Week 4 I am a bit scared (and sore!) going into it, but I am ready. BRING IT ON WEEK 5!!!

Friday, January 1, 2010

Remember 29 in 09?

Last year I came up with the idea of 29 in 09. A list of things I wanted to do in 2009. I didn't pass with flying colors....let's review shall we?

1. Make/start at least 4 cheeses besides mozzarella.
I tried to start batches of cream cheese and goat cheese but neither was successful. Cheese making is pretty time consuming and I just never found enough downtime to do as much as I wanted to do with it.

2. Plant a veggie garden.

3. Host at least one gathering a month can be big or small just must involve good friends.
DONE! I am pretty sure we surpassed the once a month rule. ;)

4. Develop an accurate budget tracking system.
Yep, I did this, but I don't keep up with it, so I don't really count it as an accomplishment.

5. Workout at least 3 days a week at the gym or doing some kind of physical activity.
BIG TIME DONE! When I made these I had no idea I would start running, doing 3 days a week became very easy once I started half marathon training.

6. Start taking classes either towards my Masters or to learn something new.
I didn't really get to take any classes of any kind in 09 :(

7. Install a fence.
DONE! It's great and the dogs love it!

8. Get another dog.
DONE! Lila has been a great addition to our lives.

9. Teach a friend how to cook.
DONE! I gave a few lessons including bread and cheese. I think my friends enjoyed them.

10. Reorganize and deep clean the kitchen.
DONE! By now it needs another good clean, but the reorganization has been working out great!

11. Write at least 3 blogs a week.

12. Organize all closets.
Another fail...although Nathan is working on this project because he had some vacation time at the end of the year.

13. Buy a digital camera.
DONE! A friend gave me an old one and then my in laws bought my husband and I a great little Nikon for Christmas this year.

14. Cancel our cable.
FAIL! I don't see this one happening in the near future like I had hoped.

15. Visit family more.
I did better this year, but not near what I was hoping for when I wrote this post originally, FAIL!

16. Use more natural cleaning methods.


17. Make homemade produce bags.

18. Do a blog makeover.

19. Get more then just a basic knowledge of Excel.
FAIL, it's better but still not where it should be.

20. Start composting.

21. Finish the Twilight series.

22. Find a good church and actually go.

23. Try at least one new wine a month.


24. Organize recipes into binder.

25. Go camping at least 4 times this year.

26. Take a long weekend trip with Nathan besides camping.

27. Comment more on blogs

28. Keep my home office more organized.
At one point it was awesome, but now it is a disaster again.

29. Make a successful sourdough bread and stop buying sandwich bread from the store

That final score ends up being 13 completed with the rest being complete failures or partial failures. Yikes....

I will say that regardless this year was fabulous. I don't love admitting defeat on these things, but my year changed dramatically and my priorities changed on many things. When I look back on 2009 I smile and feel very lucky to have some many good people and things in my life.

What does 2010 hold? It's just hard to say. If this past year has proved anything to me it's that how I think the year will go in January is rarely the case. I hope that my year is filled with my personal triumphs and continued blessings.

Happy New Year!!!