Category Archives: half marathon

Long Runs and Trail Races

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**Note- this was written on Sunday and not published until today. read as if you were still gloriously enjoying your Sunday afternoon instead of in the trenches of a work week/stay at home mom week with all kids home on summer break – it will be more enjoyable that way

Workouts

Let’s start with Saturday’s long run – my longest run since I’ve returned to running after the April marathons and a lot of time off before that from shin splints. This was my 5th week back, and I am just starting to incorporate a little speed to test out my legs and start to give them a feel for faster.  My mileage has increased over the past five weeks and my longer run on Saturday got me to 50 miles for last week. yippee. happy week.
 
Saturday – 14 miles. I don’t know the time. I ran 6 alone and 8 with a friend. I know the 8 friendly miles were about exactly 8 minute miles. The solo miles were closer to 7:30. Perfect 14 miles.
 
Sunday – 6 miles. confession, I partnered up with garmin for this one. I just felt the need.  I had no real intentions of speed. I often don’t know what the run will hold these days until I start running, which is kind of nice – soon enough they will all be planned out. the gps didn’t kick in for about 3/10 of a mile, but the timer started right away so my time was accurate but my distance was off. Blah blah blah. Feet start moving and this turned into a let’s make this a marathon goal pace run, because that sounds like a fun thing to do on fathers day. which turned into, let’s just run and see how it goes. it went pretty well. I get all mathematical with pace figuring sometimes, and judging by my scientific calculations, the first 1.3 miles were about 7:20 pace.  truly ground breaking stuff here.  the average pace was about 6:37.  the last 4 were- 6:30, 6:16, 6:32, 6:17, then a 3/4 mile jog to make 6.  happy with that too. getting a feel for speed again. 
 
Saturday had all sorts of family shenanigans going on. It’s just what we do when the weather’s nice and the hubs and I are feeling like letting our children have an utterly enjoyable childhood. homemade slip ‘n slide. 
 
 
 
There’s nothing like throwing your children down a tarp of running water at lightning speed.  contesting who could get the farthest distance off the tarp and into the middle of the yard.  pure fun. for parent and child alike. 
 
We did some driveway bike riding with our best buds. 
 
 
biking is so much more fun with friends. They go everywhere luke goes.  boy needs some friends.  riding this little bike is our favorite past time. 5:30 am, Luke and froggy’s are riding the bike
 
Most importantly, Shelby is not living in a paper cup anymore. we didn’t want to get reported for animal cruelty so we got her (or him, I’m still not sure) a proper home. 
 
I don’t know how, but my daughters unconditional love for this hermit crab has rubbed off on me and I have grown fondly attached to Shelby.  adorable little thing.
 
Fathers day started with a family trip up to Massachusetts.  the Hubs ran a trail half marathon.  it was actually 13.5 miles to be exact. we piled in the car with lots of snacks and went to cheer on our favorite daddy.  I usually get slightly insanely jealous of other people running races when I am not. I didn’t really get jealous of this one. maybe just a little bit after, but not before. 3,000 feet in elevation gain in the first 3 miles. frightening. you can have this one all to yourself hubs. I would much rather fish Luke out of a nearby stream. 
 
Mt. Grey lock in Mass.  you get to go straight up that mountain over yonder. real fun.  lady in the middle of the field was doing some serious warmups. I hope she didn’t injure herself before she even got going. 

Kidings and I, and hubs’ friend drove to the 7.5 mile mark to wait for him to come through. this was rough and tough trail running. down and dirty. I surely would have dislocated some thing had I attempted this. I am better at spectating these things for now.  The kids and I did just fine.  we found a log and claimed it. ticks and all. this is the wild outdoors.
 
 
we packed plenty of food and hung out.  because food always makes kids happy and pleasant.  you would think 4 lbs of grapes, 2 lbs of strawberries, bananas, pb&j sandwiches, crackers and what not would last awhile…they didn’t.  these kids can plow through some produce in no time. 
 
 
I don’t know what they are looking at, but Luke is missing out on something spectacular. 
 
Hubs finished in 2:23.  fantastic. he loves the trail running. love may actually be a strong word for his feelings about trail running. if he has to run, he would prefer trails.  
 
It’s good that we run differently. It’s hard enough sometimes that we both run. I will do an ultra trail run in the next two years.  But for now, I like the road and he likes the trails. and it keeps us nicely balanced.  and I don’t have to make him feel badly about beating him on all the trail runs.
 
I got in touch with my inner chef and prepared a lovely fathers day dinner. the requested first course was nachos with avocado. done.  yum. 
 
 
The picture of health. you’ve got to just enjoy food like this sometimes. all in moderation and not all the time. hubs definitely worked for it after that trail run. 
 
 
 
Followed by beef tenderloin on the grill, sweet potatoes and corn on the cob. dee – lish.  
 
 
I don’t really sit down to eat most nights. I hover. and get water refills and second helpings and cut up food and take memorable photographs that will never get printed and usually end up finishing off whatever is not eaten. so healthy. 
 
I hope everyone had a great fathers day and happy races if that’s what you did this weekend. 
 
Don’t forget to check out the GIVEAWAY
 
Tell me about your weekend??

Racing?  did anyone ‘bump’ into Kara Goucher at the half marathon championships??

Grilling?  

Slip ‘n Sliding???

Healthy or not so healthy eating? 
 
 
 
 
 

Second, My Lot in Life – A 10K and a Half Marathon

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Workout – 3.7 mile run.  easy.  shockingly easy pace.  I was surprised when I looked at the clock and saw the pace.  but it was the slow pace I wanted to do.  right around 8 minute miles.  part 2 of the run to happen later today.  I’m very hopeful.  I didn’t have time this morning.  my husband and I are doing a very good job of sharing the morning workout hours.  go us.  *edited to add – run #2 did happen.  because my husband is just fabulous and came home for me to squeak out a 3.3 miler for a 7 mile total for the day.  same pace as before.  keep the hope.  and keep around a good husband who knows how much his wife needs to run.

Yesterday – a 10K/6.2 miles is a good run.  I really like to start my week off with a nice chunk of miles done, so 10+ is perfect.  I went back out to complete the days running.  I didn’t bring a watch, I just ran a nice comfortable pace.  But I did check the clock before and after I left.  I did 7 miles at about a  7:35-40 pace.  good stuff.  13.2 miles total for the day.  there’s my half marathon.  really good stuff.  at 20 miles for the week.  and it’s monday.  happy monday.

Lets chat about yesterday.  the race.  my thoughts.  epiphanies.  running highlights.  and what not.

I’ve run this Iron Horse Half Marathon every year since 2009.  I love it.  It was going to be my goal half for sub 1:25, had my spring races and running not blown up in my face.  blah blah blah.  condensed version of the happenings surrounding this race in a little flow chart….katie actually does something before the deadline and signs up for IronHorse half way back when running was nice to her —-> poor little katie has shin splints and can’t run, for awhile.  or do speedwork.  which she loves.  or train.  in any significant way for 6+ weeks.  and is really good at making excuses.  and talking in the 3rd person.  super fun sometimes —-> poor little katie has a couple bad marathons that kind of mess with her head —->  poor little katie realizes running is not the be all and end all of who she is and is really not so much the poor little katie.  life goes on.  go with it.  lemonade out of lemons and every other “pick yourself up and make the best of life” cliche saying you can think of —-> a couple more weeks off of running to recoup from what I thought were disaster marathons —-> goal half is not going to happen because healthy strong katie would put too much pressure on it and even though she could probably place top 3 women, she does not want to be poor little katie again all beat down about running —-> there will be more half marathons —-> I will run a fast half this year —->  not on June 3rd —-> but….

my friend was running the 10K.  hmmmm.  that’s an option.  I’ve never run a 10K.  I have no pressure on myself about it.  I have no idea what I can run these days.  I miss racing.  I just want to be at this race.  here’s my in.  without having to do the half.  10K it is.

My husband says, what’s your plan?  I say, I have no plan.  He says, are you starting in the front line.  I say, of course I am starting at the front line.  he says, then you have a plan.  so here’s what this race has given me.  we’re gonna gift this one out…

Gift #1 – The gift of running knowledge.  I always have a plan.  I always have an expectation.  a big one.  a winning one.  I always plan and expect to run my bestto run my race.  to race.  alwaysand that might just be enough for me.  I start adding more pressure on myself and I crumble.  I went into this race totally untrained.  totally open to any possibility.  totally unsure of what the outcome would be.  completely sure of how I would run.  and completely content with that plan.  I would run my run.  to the BEST of my ability that day.  it was kind of exciting.  because I had never done a 10K.  and I’ve been out of running for a bit.  and I’ve been out of running fast for a longer bit.  I had no idea what my legs and my body and my heart would do.

Gift #2 – gift of new beginnings.  I had to start over with running after my spring marathons.  but I didn’t know where to start.  I didn’t know where I was at with running; what I had lost or gained physically.  I’ve been floating around in running land for the last 3 weeks since I’ve gotten back into it.  Sometimes you just have to put it all out there, see what you can do and find a new beginning.  in my dreams, I would be able to run a sub 40 half, on this 10K race day.  literally, in my dreams.  I had dreamt about it the night before, probably because I did one quick pace calc right before my head it the pillow.  sub 40 would mean less than a 6:25 pace.  right.  I knew 100% that I was capable of it at some point in the next couple months.  I knew I was capable of it and faster 3 months ago.  but my recent training and runs would dictate that this was not possible.  but it was possible.  my little long legs thought it was possible.  and my new happy little running heart really wanted it.  just because it wanted it.  without causing my little happy sensitive running soul to be crushed if it didn’t happen.  because in my heart, it truly didn’t matter if sub 40 or any other time goal happened or not.  yesterday, my plan and my expectation was just to run my best run that day.  my happy little running heart and my little happy sensitive soul liked that plan.  and that will be the plan.  always.

Gift #3 – gift of life.  I was spared by the racing powers that be.  I was slightly concerned that karma would strike me down in the instant that I started running, for the fact that I kindly cut in front of about 15 half marathoners to get to the porta potty because it was 7:28.  my race started at 7:30.  theirs started at 7:45.  and I needed to pee.  and kindly, I was not punished for kindly jumping ahead in line.  it worked out that the race started a few minutes late because the start line was about 1/2 mile further up than I thought.  and that was my sprint warmup.  to the start line.

Gift #4 – the gift of athletic wear.  I have my next lululemon running skirt picked out.  I’m actually quite upset that it is not in my possession as we speak.  My lululemon stalking has not paid off.  I spied at least 2 runners wearing the flash colored Pace setter skirt.  why do they have it and I do not.  I almost threw a bratty tantrum as I saw them run by.  that top is the flash color.

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and it’s on a skirt.  I would like to own it.  it’s really more about my safety.  you can see that color a mile away on the road in the wee hours of 5 am.  that is all.  that is not all.  that look on my face can best be explained by me watching my daughter ride her bike into an art easel and take the whole thing out.  no children were harmed. clumsy runs in the family.

running apparel item #2 is the item that I won for coming in 2nd place.  yay.  Aspaeris compression shorts.  I love to be compressed.

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I just realized that it was THIS BLOGGER at the table.  Hi Kari!  Thanks for the shorts!  I should have listened to you and taken the medium but I will squeeze my hiney into these suckers until I can’t feel my legs, then I will take them off!

Gift #5 – gift of wearing racing flats.  I love me some light shoes.  I especially love an excuse to wear them.  I don’t really wear these on my daily runs.  I loved these yesterday.  they loved me.  it was happy union.

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Mizuno Musha.  go get yourself a pair.  and have fun running.  wouldn’t they look so fun with my new flash colored lululemon skirt?  I thought so too.

I will wear these up to half marathon distance for now.  I would wear them for a marathon.  I will work up to that.  maybe my fall marathon.  they just worked like a charm.  did what they were supposed to do and kept every part of my feet feeling happy and strong.

Gift #6 – the gift of second.  second place is not a bad place to be.  I would much rather be first.  but let’s review how I am always second.  aside from the 2 april races.  we are going to blot those out from racing history.  lessons were learned.  and the races can be forgotten.  anyway.  2nd place review – dating back to Hartford Marathon Fall 2011: 2nd place in age group

Harrisburg Marathon Fall 2011: 2nd place female overall

Cheshire 5K Fall 2011: 2nd place female overall

Colchester Half: ruined my 2nd streak and came in 3rd female, but gave me a new PR, on a hilly windy course

St. Patty’s Day Shamrock 5K: 2nd place female overall

April Races?  What April Marathons?  I do not know what you speak of.

IronHorse 10K: 2nd female overall.  this is interesting though.  perhaps only to me, so just skip this paragraph if you are grabbing at pencils to stick in your eyeballs from the sheer length of this post.  I would apologize for the longevity, but I’m not really sorry.  you can stop at anytime, but I think it’s probably kind of like watching a train wreck.  so just keep reading.

I started at the front.  I always do.  From when the horn went off, there was girl 1, girl 2, and me.  I had my eyes on them.  Girl 1 was about 200 yards ahead for about 1/2 the race.  I actually have no idea how far ahead.  that number sounded good.  she was a distance ahead, but I could see her.  Girl 2 was never more than 10 feet ahead of me.  I flew out of the start.  naturally.  6:08 first mile.  slowed it down a bit.  I was feeling great.  Did not feel like I was pushing it 100%.  I was very cautious for the first 5 miles of this race.  I would say I was at 80-85% effort.  I kept getting stuck in this pack of 5 or 6 people, Girl 2 and a couple guys.  Between mile 3 and 4, I decided to take Girl 2 because it was now or never.  I sprinted ahead of the pack and stayed ahead of Girl 2.  I took a Gu.  So glad I did.  I could see Girl 1.  We passed 10k’ers on the other side of the road that were still at the beginning of the race.  At mile 5.25, the 10k converged with the 5K, and all went toward the finish.  this was a bit of a downer.  I was in the front of a fast group of 10K runners, to be greeted by some slow 5k’ers, and even some walkers.  momentum killer.  I got back into it and continued to run my race.  not worried about Girl 1 in front of me or who was behind me.  I ran.  I started pushing it harder probably right around mile 5.4 when the 5k’ers were raining on my 10k running parade.  Got back in the groove and was pretty confident I had my second place finish.  I lost Girl 1 in the 5k crowd. saw 39:20’s as I approached the finish.  ran through in 39:40.  happy.  elated.

Fast forward to awards with the unofficial results, and they announce me as Overall Female placing 3rd.  😦  3rd is great, but not when you didn’t see a 2nd place between you and Girl 1 for the entire race.  I don’t know where she came from.  I started on the front line and it was me and Girl 1 and 2. no mysterious alter-second.

It’s a mystery.  Official results came out and 2nd place, elusive ‘2nd place’ was not on there.  I kind of suspected.  and I held my 2nd place that I thought I had at the finish.  This is what I theorize.  when the 5K joined with the 10k, at mile 5.25, to finish with the 10k peeps.  they were splitting off from a stream of 10k’ers that were still in the first couple miles (the 5k started 15 minutes later).  so either this ‘2nd place’ was a 5k lady that got clocked in as a 10k, or it was a 10K that didn’t want to run the whole race and took the shortcut to the finish with the 5k group and didn’t run miles 2-5.  my theory.  I never saw a 2nd place.  I was 2nd place from when I passed Girl 2 at mile 3ish until the end.  and every volunteer person I passed from that point on said, ‘you’re second female, you are awesome and fast and stylish and you run like a gazelle, go get it!’  or something to that effect.

my splits: (my garmin said 6.31 miles, and an avg 6:17 pace.  I don’t think my garmin is that off.  I think I was doing some serious dodging and running all over the road – it was not closed to traffic.  or walking 5k ‘racers’.  and I’m kind of a spastic runner.  haven’t figured out how to run the shortest tangent.  ever)  So these splits are a tad faster than my official pace, but not so far off.

6:08, 6:22, 6:22, 6:07, 6:31 (hello 5K walkers), 6:18, 6:03 for the last .2

And there I hold my second place finish.  I hope to have a first place streak sometime.  that would be thrilling.

Gift #7 – the gift of good friends to go to fun races with.  it was a really nice morning out for a nice quick race.  followed by eating some really not so tasty but very thoughtfully prepared by the boy scouts pancakes.  with a very good friend that had a very good race.  life is good.  and so are the good things in it.  as with many running lessons, I think all things learned can be applied to a lot of things in life.  gifts abound everywhere (and I get sappy and emotional these days like you wouldn’t believe.  or you would believe if you have endured this post.  pretty sappy) like the gifts my sweet boy brings into my home in the early hours of the day. I swiftly sent him outside where he carried his pet froggy around like it was an accessory.

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froggy boy.  love him.

In conclusion to this short long essay, I am very much looking forward to watching the bachelorette tonight.  and that statement scares me, but it’s the truth.  I said it.  I am also very much looking forward to doing some core work and some massage sticking whilst I watch the bachelorette.  that is a more suitable statement for me.  I still can’t do much strength work with my bum arm, but I do what I can.

My brain is far too tired to think about questions.  so fill me in on your weekends please!!! and chime in with comments or children bringing you frogs for breakfast, your favorite fast running shoes or anything of the like.

last thing.  I PROMISE to the best of my ability to keep a promise, that I will answer questions about my STAIRMASTER and other things like running fast next time I am on here writing an insanely long post!  promise.  with my pinky.

xoxo

Colchester 1/2 Race Day Recap

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Official stats –

30th overall out of 625

3rd female out of 221

1:28:26

6:46 pace

 

My stellar husband got up with tweedle dee at 5am, so I could sleep. 

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I slept until 6:30 when little cherub #3 came looking for me, and got to it.  Of course I was not prepared and did not have coffee.  Once again, aforementioned husband comes to the rescue with an iced coffee from the best little coffee shop this side of the Mississippi.  or the Connecticut River.  either one.  This ensures things move on out smoothly before the race.  That, combined with my staple pre-race breakfast. 

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quaker instant, flax, peanut butter.  stick to your ribs breakfast

I usually add a little protein powder to the mix as well.  I’ve been trying to get away from the pre-packaged oatmeal, and have been doing well with eating the real oats.  but this was a special occasion.  This is what I eat before any race.  I was not going to mix it up today in the name of clean-er eating. 

Typical morning followed – made breakfast for the crew – scrambled eggs, cereal, whatever else they demanded ordered asked for.  I got myself ready.  showered, makeup’d – I absolutely put on complete makeup before a race.  it just so happens that I ran out of just about all of my makeup, and I have yet to replace most of it.  the makeup today wasn’t super nice.  but then again, I wasn’t going to walk the red carpet, so it wasn’t the end of the world. 

This was the original wardrobe plan for the race:

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decked out in lulu.  those are the wunder under legging pants.  not made for running specifically, but phenomenal.  did not budge.  and the only pants that go to my ankles.  in love.  will talk more about them in a lulu post.  I may have bought some other things.  that I could not live without. 

I really liked the 10am start time.  We didn’t leave the house until about 8:45, and we were still there pretty early.  another thing I get crazy about – getting to the race with PLENTY of time.  We were parked and unloaded by 9:15.  I like to be on the early side.  This gave me plenty of time to get myself to the little ladies room, and make sure my laces were tied and my pants were on.  Last minute, I grabbed a long sleeve shirt and decided to change into it.  It was REALLY windy out.  the weatherman did not lie.  the wind definitely came out to play today.  I think it was about 40 degrees, but felt a lot colder because of the wind.  I was happy I grabbed the shirt, but I would have been ok if I stuck with the short sleeve.  I actually wished I had kept the short sleeve on about half way through, and then when the wind almost blew me sideways off the road, I was glad I had longsleeve. 

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don’t mind me.  just digging in my goodie bag for my sport beans and my gu. 

The night before the race, my husbands cousin decided he would run with me.  This made me really happy.  FYI- he runs a 2:50’s marathon and a sub 7hour, 50 mile ultramarathon.  He has put in 90 miles this week, before the race.  no big deal.  and I also met up with another friend of mine that I didn’t know was running.  happy day. 

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The race started right on time.  10am sharp.  straight into the wind.  I think it was about 25mph.  no exaggeration.  and the wind continued head on for probably about 75% of the race.  The course was a big loop.  Let me refresh you one more time on the elevation map of this course.  because you have only seen it twice this week. 

CT14831_Elevation_Map

The hills definitely joined the half marathon party today.  I could not imagine them away.  I wasn’t even able to downplay them into smaller hills.  They were every bit as horrible as they look in that map.  I really try not to exaggerate, but I would dare say they were worse than they look.  They were steep and there were a lot of them.  Hills within hills.  The race ended on a 2 mile climb with a significantly strong headwind.  That many hills should not be allowed in one race.

I took my first powerade gel, I think it was tangerine, at mile 5.  I’m surprised I didn’t gag it back up.  I usually can’t do gu.  This wasn’t horrible, but I try not to let it touch my tongue so that I don’t really have to taste it.  I took sport beans around mile 11 – this was hard because they are just hard to chew and swallow without aspirating them into a lung.  especially while I was chugging up a hill. 

I was definitely the idiot who stopped running before I actually crossed the finish line.  everybody was yelling at me to keep running the 15 feet to cross.  I could have sworn that the mat I ran over 10 feet back was the finish line.  apparently not. 

The race was very well run, but very boring.  and I don’t need to tell you again it was hilly.  to put it mildly.  there were no spectators and it was basically running on roads through the woods.  there was a bit of it on dirt/rock roads.  back country. 

We bolted right after the race.  There were no medals, no t-shirts, no rewards.  Nothing.  This was great.  I really don’t need another race tshirt that I wont wear, or a medal that my kids will fight over.  Unless I’m going to get 3 medals to pass out to the littles, I don’t really need it.  It only cost $12 to run it, and it’s a not-for-profit race.  I think there was a lot of food for those who stuck around, but after running and my husband trucking the kids around, we were ready to go -after a nice little shot with my cheering crew.  It took a few to get a half decent one.  no one wants to look at the camera at the same time.

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this is just a hot mess. and get a load of that forehead vein.  in full force today. 

 

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missing Alex.  hello again vein. 

 

 

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as good as it gets 

 

The nice thing about a half, is that you still have the rest of the day.  to not relax, go to birthday parties, play with children and go to the 99 for dinner.  My first choice was Red Robin, but the 99 was closer.  99 won. 

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I got a nice cobb salad, hold the bacon dressing on the side.  good stuff.  I really don’t have too much of an appetite after a long run. 

and now I am replenishing the muscles with a nice big bag of these.  and some dark chocolate. 

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Race Reflections

After the race, my husband asked me, “So, what did you learn???”  I like this question.  As with anything we do in life, there are things to be learned.  About life, about the particular thing we are doing at the time.  About ourselves.  Growth can happen.  growing is good.  I love to run.  I love the introspection and life reflection that comes with it.  I love how it allows me to dig in and figure out what drives me or what doesn’t drive me.  I love the physical challenge of it.  I love the results, physical, emotional, spiritual, mental.  This run kind of kicked off my racing for the year.  I was excited about this.  I have 49 days until my first marathon.  I have A LOT of work to do to get sub 3.  This is good to delve into my thoughts and figure out what’s going on with me.  Here is what I have come up with so far, to answer my husbands question. 

Physical – hills are hard.  I respect the hill.  I am going to run a lot more hills.  Physically, I conquered the hills today.  I took the challenge of this hilly race, and finished it.  Physically, I am capable of a lot more than my mind lets me believe.  I felt great at the end of the run.  My legs felt good, my breathing was good.  I had no knee pain, or pain anywhere.  This made me very happy.  I think one of my underlying concerns is always injury.  I’m always afraid that the next run or the next race will end in injury.  Physically, I am strong.  I want to get stronger to help prevent injury, and I can put that fear to rest.  I have also put on about 10 lbs since my last race in the fall.  10lbs fell from the sky and landed on my hips.  I am a female and my body kind of does what it wants.  I call it my winter weight and my I’m almost 30, I have little control over my weight, weight.  I was probably about 3-5 lbs under an ideal racing weight this past fall, but I felt good.  Now, I feel I am about 5 lbs above an ideal racing weight, for me, and was having anxiety leading up to this run about how it would effect my running.  I got rid of the scale.  Out of the house.  I have plans to do a post on this topic on it’s own, but this was something I was holding onto leading up to this run.  Regardless of the 5 or 10 extra lbs, physically, I felt great today. 

Mental – I have a great respect for the power of the mind over the body.  My husband said that my biggest challenge is not running a certain time, but overcoming the mental boundaries that I let determine my physical capabilities.  I wanted to win today.  I also wanted to PR.  My last marathon PR was a totally flat, fast, ideal weather race.  I thought it would have been a challenge to PR today.  It also would have been a challenge to win.  I wanted to win more.  Today, at mile 5, a woman passed me.  She was no more than 10 seconds ahead of me at any given time.  She won.  In the last half mile, another girl passed me up the last hill.  She got 2nd place.  I got 3rd.  14 seconds behind her.  At some point between starting the race and mile 11, I let my desire to win go.  Getting a PR was enough.  And I am beyond happy that I took over 1 minute off my previous flat half, on an unbelievable hilly, cold, windy race course.  That is a success.  But I still let something else go that was within reach because my mind was stronger than what I knew I could physically accomplish.  I do this over and over – I am ok with 2nd, or 3rd.  I don’t want to be.  I look at the results and grow increasingly aggravated that I didn’t push it harder at the end.  26 seconds between me and first place.  That’s less than 1/10 of a mile.  I let my mind settle for something less than I am capable of doing.  Last year, I wanted to run a sub 1:30 half.  So I ran a 1:29:36.  For the race today, I wanted to PR, by running less than a 1:29.  I ran a 1:28:26.  I let my mind limit my body.  Those are the results below for 1st, 2nd and 3rd place women.  I’m on the bottom.  I don’t want to be that close and be at the bottom.  I want to be on the top.  I can do it.  I need to stop letting my mind get in the way.     

27 1007 Katie Libby F 1/35    F3034   1/221  33       1:28:00.19   6:44

29 378 Molly Evak F 1/30    F2529   2/221  29          1:28:12.12   6:44

30 187 Katie Edwards F 2/30    F2529   3/221  29   1:28:26.59   6:46

 

Emotional – there is a process to everything.  I guess I still kind of consider myself a ‘new’ runner, just starting to move out of the ‘new’ stage.  I didn’t seriously start running until after I had Luke.  I ran before, but I didn’t put the time into it like I have in the past 2 years.  I have run more races in the past 6 or 7 months than I think I have run in the previous 3 years total.  I am still figuring out how to run and what works for me.  I definitely go into races, especially these smaller ones, wanting to win, or at least win age group.  I think it is going to take a certain amount of time and some races under my belt until I figure out how to really want it.  Like I said above, I tend to settle into certain goals, play it safe and let certain goals go when someone passes me on a race, and default to the next best while the first one is right within reach.  It’s going to take a certain number of 2nd, 3rd and 4th places until I’ve had enough of that and find the push to take more.  I’m in the process.  I think we are all in the process of something.  whether it’s actually the running, or the working out, or the job, or the family – whatever it is.  We are always figuring it out and getting ready to take it to the next step.  I have 49 days to keep training for the next race, physically and mentally.  running is not my life, but it makes up part of my life, and it is important to me.  Running certainly helps balance the other parts of what makes me move and groove.   

I’m always happy with the race.  satisfied.  on a runner’s high all day from running well.  As the day goes on after a race, and I reflect on how it went, I quickly realize there was more to give.  satisfied is not enough for me.  This is why I run.  It’s always a challenge – in many ways.  After I finished today, my daughter runs up to me and says, ‘Mom, you won!’  I said well, I got 3rd place for the women, and that’s great.  She said, ‘yeah, you won, you got 3rd place!’  and she’s right.  I ran.  I finished.  I won.  It’s always a win when you run, and you finish.  no matter what the place.  It’s always a win when you get out there and do something.  find in yourself what your winning something is and make it happen. 

 

I would love to hear about your race stories and personal wins!  Race season is coming up and I’m sure a lot of you have races coming.  Feel free to share, and I would love to mention you on the blog!  Also, feel free to email if you would like to read about a certain topic or have questions you want answered. 

 

What is your biggest challenge in running? 

 

Early morning wakeup call

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Well helloooo 4:45 am wakeup to my sweet little angel face darling 2 year old bubbly bouncing baby boy.  I’ve really missed you since 8pm last night when you went to bed, and was hoping you wouldn’t sleep until 7am so that I could see you sooner.  We thought we were out of the woods with the early riser – he is making a reappearance.  just to keep us young. 

Refresher – what we do at 5am.  when all the fun happens.

Eat cereal.  he was being camera shy.  probably still a little sleepy.  I was bright eyed and bushy tailed.  puttin’ on a happy face.  and I either severely over tweezed that eyebrow, or the lighting is weird.  I think the lighting is weird.  

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Play with the digger.  work to be done by 5:30am. 

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Hide in the castle. you won’t fit in there, luke. 

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Sidenote- I just realized there are about twice as many picture “effects” on instagram that I didn’t know you could scroll over to use.  yeah.  little slow.  it’s like discovering instagram all over again.  fun.

Workout – EASY peasy 4 mile run, rolling hills.  no garmin.  no stress.  no speed.  no treadmill.  no clue about my pace.  light and fluffy.  T minus 2 days until half marathon.  my legs are very excited to rest, stretch and roll.  very excited.   

Staycation Days 3 and 4. 

day 3 was a roaring success.  Playdate in the am.  Birthday party in the afternoon.  Mommy night out in the evening that included a peartini.  I’m all about the fruity martini’s.  love ‘em. 

Day 4 is well underway. 

Trip to the mall.  Hit up H & M.  one of my favorite things to do is shop for clothes for the little kiddos.  much more fun than shopping for myself.  It’s like dressing up real live dolls.  Makes me feel like a big kid playing house.  wait.  I don’t have to play that one.  they’re really mine.  Got a few items to start the spring wardrobe.  the kids played in the play area.  we harassed panera for lunch.  sorry panera patrons who wanted a nice lunch without a screaming, tantrumming 2 year old.  today was not your lucky day. 

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Takes a lot of focus and hard work to eat a bowl of macaroni. serious stuff

I achieved my #1 goal for the day – keeping the kids out of the house all morning and tuckering their little heinies out.  Success.  Luker boy fell asleep on the way home.  happy sleeping kid.  happy sleeping peaceful mom. 

The girls and I made some brownies.  I grew up making brownies with my mom from scratch.  it’s a little sad to me that I will probably never do that.  then I get over it when all I have to do is add a little oil, water and egg and voila.  best brownies ever.  and it’s still a happy special time of brownie batter licking fun.  that’s what it’s all about anyway. 

 Hubs and I are trying to remedy this freaky new little smile Anna likes to sport.  that’s toned down a bit from the first take.  little scary.  working on it. 

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The mom in me – didn’t want to leave my #1 out of the post – #2 and #3 got pics, and I know my Nana and Bubba like to see the pics of the kids, they don’t care so much about the running talk… for you N & B

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Point proven – just realized I could do B & W on instagram!  wow. 

 

2 Days from my First Race of the year. 

My legs felt super tight and stiff this morning.  but that’s ok.  little TLC today and tomorrow and all is well. 

It’s 57 degrees here today.  this is a good week.  the weather is looking pretty snazzy for Saturday – high of 46 and sunny.  somebody loves me. 

I’m kind of excited for this race for a couple reasons.  and I would like to fill you in. 

1 – This is totally out of my comfort zone.  on many levels.  Normally, I would take one look at that elevation map and say no way.  I only run flat, easy, fast courses.  really.  I’m a wimp.  I don’t want to be that way.  This is good.  It’s a challenge and I’m glad I’m doing it.  I also don’t normally run anything this early in the year, nor do I or have I run any other half than the one I’m doing in June.  I don’t like change and I don’t like new things (unless they are a size 10 with 4 inch heels, made of designer denim or are leather, fit on my shoulder and come from Italy…to name a few)  Adding this race is a big step outside that little bitty circle I call comfort.  I keep my circle pretty small.  I like it like that.  This is making it a little bigger.  Bigger is better.  in this case.

Step outside your circle – or don’t – just make it bigger by adding a new something that you are already doing.  I’m already running, and I’m already doing races, I’m just adding a “new” race. 

Challenge yourself.  in any way.  grow.  become stronger. 

2 – This is a good way to ease into some bigger races I have coming up in April.  I think it will be nice to start with a half marathon and then go to the full.  Sometimes Often when I’m running, I think, how the heck am I going to do a marathon, faster than this pace, and it’s 26.2 miles!  Yes, that last .2 counts, because when you are running it, it feels like at least a 5K.  maybe worse. I’ve done 3 marathons, over the past 3 years.  I would still call myself a newbie to the marathon running.  And it’s a daunting distance.  I’m excited to get 13.1 miles in and let some of the there’s no way I can run a marathon, at the pace I want, or any pace, at all, ever, what am I thinking out of my head.  at least for a little while. 

I think people sometimes think that a marathon is what makes a runner, and if you haven’t done a marathon, you’re not really a runner.  NOT TRUE.  running a marathon is an amazing thing.  but it’s not the be all and end all of running.  set a goal and run a race.  any distance.  and you are a runner.  the smaller ones, whether it be a mile, a 5K, 10K, a half, are great confidence boosters to get you to where you ultimately want to be.  eventually. and it your own time.   

3 + 4 – It doesn’t start until 10am.  this is just perfect.  no reason to get up early.  that’s funny.  like I have a choice in the matter.  my little luke.  he loves to get up early.  at least I don’t have to rush out the door.  yay.  It’s all about sleep two nights before anyway.  I never get a restful night the night before any anticipated run.  early to bed tonight and I’m sure early to rise tomorrow.  and, technically I’m supposed to do a long run on Saturday.  this will knock off 13 miles in a fun way.  then I only have to do 6 or 7 more.  later in the day.  easy peasy lemon squeezy.  mom, I know you think this is crazy.  to run after a run.  it’s totally normal.  in a very not normal way.  

That’s all she wrote friends. 

 

Hows the weather doing where you live?  good for running?

Have you challenged yourself in any way lately?  running or not running related?

What time do you set your alarm for?  or do you have little human alarms that come in and wake you up at ungodly hours of the morning?  maybe that’s just me.  🙂