Sunday, February 26, 2012

cat's out of the bag

My sweet baboo!
Drowned rats after getting caught in a downpour in
Oak Creek Canyon near Sedona, AZ fall 2011.
The husband signed up for Grandma's!!!!

He signed up almost TWO WEEKS AGO and swore me to secrecy.  I think he was thinking he could be all super secret stealth training ninja and then just announce his accomplishment after the marathon, but even he couldn't keep quiet about it.  Thank goodness he spilled the beans, because I would have been hard-pressed to keep my ginormous mouth shut.  I am SO excited for him!!

Remember this little treat from the husband?  I'll have to
find a prize worthy of his first marathon finish!
Remember how he supported my on my journey to Grandma's last year?  He was my training partner, my paparazzi, my cheerleader, and my champion.  Now it's my turn to return the favor. I've already turned him on to Injinji' baths can't be too far behind!  I'm sure he'll thank me for it.

Speaking of marathons, did I tell you I'm training for one?  Yep, I am!  Here's what I did last week to get ready to meet my Grandma:

Week 2:  February 20-26

Monday - Easy Run As Follows:
Warm up walking 5-10 min at brisk pace
Easy run of 3 miles at 11:34 min pace
Cool down with brisk walk of 5-10 min

Tuesday - Easy Run As Follows:
Warm up walking 5-10 min at brisk pace
Easy run of 4 miles at 11:34 min pace
Cool down with brisk walk of 5-10 min
Only ran 3.18 miles - it was super icy out AND for some reason, the GI tract was being a total beyoch.

Wednesday - Yoga

Thursday - 5 Miles Tempo Run as Follows:
WU running 2 miles at 11:34-12:34 pace
Tempo Run of 2 miles at 10:00 min pace.
Cool down with 1 mile at 11:34-12:34 pace.
Dinner at the Mall O'Merica with my former workmates took precedence over the run.  I walked and did yoga instead.

Friday - Did Thursday's workout on Friday.

Saturday - Long Run as Follows:
WU for 1 mile at 11:34-12:34 pace
Run 6.5 miles at 11:34 pace
Run last .5 mile at 10:13 min pace. (Goal Marathon Pace!!!)
Cool down with brisk walk for 5-10 minutes

Sunday - Yoga/Pilates mix and walking the dog
Total of 19 miles running (should have been 20), 8 walking

So there you have it, that's my week of training.

Are you as excited for the husband as I am?  This is going to be so FUN!!!

Monday, February 20, 2012

catching up

I've been a blog slacker again.

Remember when I posted about my job being eliminated?  My last day there was February 3rd.  I took a week off to re-group (and lick my wounds) and started my new job last Monday.  So far so good.  I like the people and the work is interesting.  But it's SO stressful starting a new job, and having to be there 8-5 Monday through Friday is a big change.  I'm used to spending part of most days working at home. On the up side, my new boss does triathlons so we're going to try to hold some of our meetings while running.  I'm excited about that!

The first day of my new job was also the first day of MARATHON TRAINING!!!  Oh, how I love to have a plan!

Here's what was on the plan for last week:

Easy Run As Follows:
Warm up walking 5-10 min at brisk pace
Easy run of 4 miles at 11:34 min pace
Cool down with brisk walk of 5-10 min
Interval Run as Follows:
Warm up with 2 miles at 11:34 min pace4 x ¼ mile repeats at 8:40-8:50 min pace.  Recover with ¼ mile at 11:34.Finish run with 1 mile cool down at 11:34 min pace. The interval run Kicked.My.Ass.  It was HARD to run that fast but it sure felt good!
Wednesday - Core work and ran one mile
Easy Run as Follows
WU w/ brisk walk for 5-10 min
Easy run of 4 miles at 11:34 min pace
Cool down with brisk walk of 5-10 min
Friday - elliptical and ran one mile
Long Run as Follows:
WU for 1 mile at 11:34-12:34 pace
Run 5 miles at 11:34 pace
Run last 1 mile at 10:13 min pace. (Goal Marathon Pace!!!) I felt like I could run all day during this one!  Oh, and I ran that last mile in 9:15 and felt fantastic.  Isn't that bizarre????
Cool down with brisk walk for 5-10 minutes
Sunday - walked the dog and ran one mile
Halfway there!  And I still can't color in the lines.

The biggest challenge?  Keeping to that unbearably slow pace. I haven't been able to do it yet.

Goal check-in:
Running at least one mile per day - 46/51 days of success
Moving 30 minutes every day - 51/51 days of success!
Clean eating - I think I'm seeing some improvement there!

In other news: 

Have I mentioned how much I LOVE free stuff?

My sweet new watch! Did I mention I won it?  
Team Ortho, sponsor of many of my favorite races, was doing a week of giveaways on Facebook.  All you had to do was "like" their page and "like" the post stating what the current giveaway is.  They have things like Newtons, watches, jackets, and sometimes even jewelry.  When I see those posts come across I always pounce on 'em like a honeybadger on a house of bees.  Anywhoo, a couple of weeks ago, on a Wednesday, I found out I won a free Soleus watch from Team Ortho and Gear Running Store!!!!  How cool is that?!?!

Then, two days later, I found out that I won a jacket from my running club for being the 10th person to follow their blog.  Can you say "Su-Weet?"?  I haven't picked it up yet, but will do it soon.  I love the internet!

So that's about it for now.  I have more to share but it will have to keep until my next riveting post.  Stay healthy and active, my friends!

Saturday, February 11, 2012

running with sherry

I ran 6.58 miles with Sherry today.  This is the bib
created by Races2Remember.
Today, along with thousands, THOUSANDS of others, I participated in the virtual run for Sherry Arnold.  Sherry was a middle-aged woman, a mom, a wife, a teacher, and a runner.  On an early morning in January, in a small, sleepy Montana town, Sherry went out for a run but she never made it back home.  It's a horrifying story and has hit home across the running community.  Sherry's body is yet to be found, but two men have confessed to killing her. Beth at Shut Up and Run is Sherry's cousin and has been keeping us all informed as information has trickled out.

It was a tough run for me and it shows.
This story just makes me want to weep.  Hell, it HAS made me weep.  It's so sad that Sherry just went out for a normal, "nothing special" run, just trying to do something for herself, and she wasn't safe. It's just not fair.  Beth organized this virtual run to honor Sherry's memory.  It's a chance for all of us to prove together that goodness and love can overcome evil.  As Beth said, "Bad, mean people can suck it."

I ended up running by myself today.  The weather was not the greatest - it was actually really frickin' cold out there - so I decided to run on the treadmill for a change. I didn't wear my bib, I wanted to be able to see it and use it as a focal point throughout the run.  I also had a runner's prayer that I pulled off another blog today and had that in my line of sight as well.  I had a monotonous podcast playing on my iPod...... no lyrics, just a steady beat...... I didn't want anything that was going to interfere with my thoughts.

The wall in my workout room.
Overall, it was a tough run for me; treadmill runs usually are.  My heart was heavy thinking about the loss that Sherry's family has experienced, and for a vibrant life cut short. From what I've read in Beth's blog, Sherry sounds like she was a pretty wonderful person.

So that's about it.  It was not an eventful run, just a very thoughtful one.  I'm proud to have been able to honor Sherry with my solo run and I loved knowing that I was doing it with tons of others across the globe. The running community truly is amazing!  So I was by myself, yet not alone. Knowing that helped get me through the run. I've added Sherry's bib to the collection of running paraphernalia on the wall in my workout room so that I can run with her again. She will continue to inspire and never be forgotten.

Rest in peace, Sherry.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

are you there carbs? it's me, nora

Hopefully, there is hope for my kind....
They say that admitting you have a problem is the first step.

I have a problem with carbohydrates.

I love carbohydrates. LOVE them.  Left to my own devices, I don't know that I could be trusted to include other forms of  organic compounds in my diet. And yes, I know that there are different kinds of carbs.  Unfortunately, when it comes to craving carbs, I lean towards the white trash persuasion. When I was a kid, I would make a mush of saltine crackers and water.  Loved it!  I also was a huge fan of bread balls. What are bread balls you ask? Well, that's when you take a slice (or 10) of a soft white bread (Wonder Bread was the best) and you peel the crusts off, then wad the bread up until it becomes a grey ball of yuck and pop it in your mouth. Sometimes I would sprinkle the bread with garlic powder before smushing it up. So yummy! My mom was soooo disgusted by my bread ball habit, especially when I would feast on the garlic version right before a junior high band concert.  I played the clarinet.  You know, a wind instrument.  The kind you have to blow into with your nasty garlic/bread ball breath. She encouraged me to think about my fellow bandmates.  But I digress...

What was my point?  Oh yeah, carbs and my unhealthy love of them.

Ok, so I figured it's time to really start understanding my carboholic nature and try to find ways to satisfy those cravings in a healthier fashion.  So I bought a few books to jumpstart the process.  As a wanna-be long distance runner, I'm not interested a low-carb diet, rather, I want a GOOD carb diet. Also, if you recall, I'm trying to do a better job of "eating clean." My definition of eating clean is: trying to eat more whole, natural foods such as fruits, vegetables, lean proteins, and complex carbohydrates. It also means making an effort to greatly reduce the crap that I so love to eat: things like chips..... french fries (especially McDonald's)........ I want to do a better job of avoiding preservatives...... if it's full of fat and simple carbs, I'm probably gonna love it....  Did I mention that I love sugar, too?  Ahhhh, Oreos!  My goal here is not to become a crazy-ass food nazi, I just want to do a better job of fueling the machine.  Remember, I have two marathons coming up, folks!

I have to say, the recipes in the CarbLovers cookbook look fantastic! Chefs such as Wolfgang Puck and Michael Chiarello have contributed recipes.  Even Guy Fieri (I'm not sure he qualifies as a chef) is in there.  I'm excited to try some new things!

I'll keep you posted on how it all goes.

Sunday, February 5, 2012

the craziness continues

What the hell is wrong with me??

I just signed up for marathon #3!  The Bank of America Chicago Marathon, which will take place Sunday, October 7, 2012.

October 7th also happens to be the husband's and my wedding anniversary so we're going to spend a couple of extra days in the city to celebrate.

Signing up for a fall marathon means I'll be training through the summer which will bring with it alllll kinds of new challenges.  I'm a bit of a delicate flower when it comes to running in the heat and humidity so you should expect a definite uptick in bitching and whining episodes.  Ai yi yi!! Consider yourselves warned!

I'm telling you, it all started with my acceptance of ice baths.  They truly are a type of gateway drug for runners.