Tag Archives: gift of running

911, I Have an Emergency


7 mile progression run. I’m pathetic. I find something I like and use and abuse.  like progression running, lululemon and chocolate to name a few.  I always knew about progression running, but have not experienced the joy and benefit from them as I have this week. Had I known how fabulous they were, I would have been doing them and getting sick of them for far longer. It was either a progression run or just a steady run at about 7:15 pace. I went with progression. what do you know, my average pace ended up being 7:15. but I feel the benefits of the progression run were far more than if I had just gone out and done 7:15’s for 7 miles. That would have been boring, and more boring. do some progressions, have a fun run.
 Here’s what my progression run gave me today – pace experience and training:
Mile 1 – 7:50 – my legs are dead. this is a good pace to start with. holding back a tad, but could just stay here for a bit
Mile 2 – 7:37 – wow, I’ve got the hang of this. Progressing nicely. legs are loosening. 
Mile 3 – 7:32 – I should be a professional progressional runner. I’m perfect. So is this run.
Mile 4 – 7:18 – professional progressor out the window. that jump in pace was way to much, that was pace for mile 6. but mr. Gentleman running on the road in front of me, who I nicely progressed towards and passed, did not like being passed.  he decided to race.  and pick up his pace. #1, if I wanted to race I would have paid a high entry fee, made myself sick with anxiety and at least gotten a wicking shirt. maybe a medal.  I did not want to race. I wanted to progress. #2, don’t race me. I will win. and then run circles around you.  he didn’t pass me.  but my progression run just got bumped up a notch.
Mile 5 – 7:16 – back to perfection. nice little increase.  no one trying to race me.
Mile 6 – 7:06 – hello little hills. instead of letting you take my pace down today, I’m going to take you. I don’t know if you heard, but I’m doing a progression run. don’t get in the way. I have a pace to hit and it’s under 7:10. running a hill with purpose. making a hill fun. 
Mile 7 – 6:16 –  speed.  I had planned on making this last one a speedy mile from the beginning. we hit speedy.  Good stuff.
Mile .06 – 5:20 – sub 6 for .06 miles. watch out you Olympic sprinters. I’m coming to get you. not really. I just wanted to see a 5 something on my watch. running vanity at its finest. 
Other fantastic things about progressions- 
For the pacing dummies, like myself, it requires and teaches you to learn about different paces, how they feel and how subtly they can change depending on your effort. As soon as the mile beeped at a 7:50 pace, and I had to “pick up the pace” for the next mile, I would quickly find myself running a 7 minute mile. not how it’s supposed to go. so I would slow down, then speed up a bit until I got it right. fun run.
Because its so progressive, my legs really weren’t any more tired than they would have been at the end of a consistent 7 mile run, but I got better training.
I progressed and compressed. another good run day. 
Somehow, I got locked out of my iPhone today. not a huge deal. except that we got rid of our house phone and only use our cell phones. and that will be changing NOW. #1 on the to do list is to get a house phone again. the only thing I could use my phone for is an emergency call. 
To me, being a stay at home mom to three little ones who are now all out of school and it is approximately one hundred degrees out and 8000% humidity, wonders, what exactly constitutes an emergency call??  My definition of emergency might be quite different from your definition, my apple product friends. This is what I might consider an emergency call…
911, my son has packed up all the hammers and is heading out. I’m concerned. 

911, my precious 5 year old keeps saying “whatever mom” and I don’t know how to make it stop.

It’s scary. 

911, my son is screaming bloody murder at the oscillating fan and keeps turning off the AC units. It’s hot. help me. 

911, I was supposed to run 10 miles today and only did 7. something has to be done.

911, I can’t possibly cook in this heat, do you deliver sushi?

911, I just read People Style Watch while enjoying my stair master and there are so many must haves, I don’t know where to begin.  I am in distress. 

911, scratch that last call.  I have no fashion sense. let’s start there. Although I have stellar lululemon fashion sense if I do say so myself. maybe I’m not a lost cause. 

I’m guessing I would get arrested for making those calls.  or put away in a crazy home. I like my family.  I’ll keep my mouth shut and figure it all out on my own. somehow, I got in touch with my inner technology savvy ways and fixed my phone. I don’t know how. I don’t care. Back in action. 
I had a bunch more nonsense I was going to ramble on about, but I will save that kind of fun for another day.  I’ve been sweating since 10am when I had to sit outside at my little kindergartners end of year concert. precious. and hot. and the sweat hasn’t stopped. I need some fancy electrolytes and rest. and I need to say a big…
HELLOOOOO and WELCOME!!!! To all of you skinny runner loving blog readers. 
Thank you for stopping in. and leaving nice comments. not nasty ones. that makes me happy. and thank you skinny runner for helping a blogger out.
The running blog-star, Skinny Runner, featuring me on her blog is like Christmas for my little baby blog. When she said she was going to put it up, I felt like I had to get my blog ready and prepared – give it a little pep talk to be on its best behavior and look pretty.  that’s a lost cause because I’m still using this free WordPress site and enjoying every minute of it.  we will do our best to make your experience a good one. and maybe eventually make it look pretty.
Skinny Runner is a superstar blogger. kinda wanna be her when I group.  except that I think I’m older than her and if I ran as many marathons as she does, I would cut myself off at the hips. I wouldn’t survive. so I live vicariously through her California loving blog and try to soak it up wirelessly cross country. run on.
Feel free to email me with anything, anytime, as long as its nice and friendly and appropriate.  suggestions for topics are always welcome. 
And that’s all she wrote. settling in with a movie and the hubs. hoping if I stop moving long enough, I will stop sweating. thats the plan. 
I know I shouldn’t complain, so what’s the weather like where you are?
Do people ever ‘race’ you when you are out on the road?
East coast or west coast? 

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


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.