My favorite running pic!

My favorite running pic!
The Buffalo Creek Half

Monday, February 27, 2012

How great it feels...

Went on my weekly long run yesterday.  Typically, we go on Saturday, but we rescheduled because the weather was HORRIBLE on Saturday!  Who wants to run 9+ miles in 20-30 mile an hour winds and snow showers?  NOT ME!  Luckily, my running buddy texted me Friday night asking if we should reschedule.  What a great decision it turned out to be!

Usually, we run a pretty hilly route.  But yesterday, we decided to venture to the trail.  It's good to give yourself a change of scenery every now and again and give your body a different kind of run.  It was a beautiful day.  The sun was shining and it was mid 40s.  I like to call that perfect running weather.  We walked to the trail from my house.  It's only about .4 of a mile.  And then the run began.

We were really keeping a nice pace.  I could tell we were pushing it a bit more.  Not sure if that was because it was beautiful or because we were on the trail, but we definitely pushed a bit.  This was a long run, but when you have good conversation, it really isn't that bad.  We talked about all different kind of things.  Kids, running, husbands, books, food, etc.  It made us focus on other things besides the fact that we had 9 miles to run.

In the end, we ran 9.33 miles in 1:41!  It ended up being a 10:51/mile pace.  I love that!  Last week, we ran 8.17 miles in 1:36.  So we took off a lot of time for a longer run.  So, so proud of us.  It feels great!  Only 4 more miles to add for the half marathon.  It will be here in less than 5 weeks.  I can't believe it!  But this run certainly gave me some glad we rescheduled because I know our time in the bad weather wouldn't have touched this and I really needed a good run.  And I got one. How great it feels!

Friday, February 24, 2012

Only 5 weeks to go

Oh my gosh!  I only have 5 weeks until my first half marathon!  I can't believe it!  I already feel myself getting nervous/anxious about it.  But I also know that I have done the training (although I still have a bit to go) and I can push my body.  Joanne tells me not to worry about it...I'll be fine!  That's my running partner, always encouraging!  I think she believes in me and my running ability more than I believe in myself!

So tomorrow we are scheduled for a 9+ mile run.  I actually am looking forward to it for the most part, except for 3 things:  snow, WIND and the hills!  I looked at the forecast this morning and we have the possibility of getting 2 inches of snow tonight and tomorrow morning.  Ugh!  As long as the roads are pretty clear, I don't have a problem with that.  The wind, that's another story.  I HATE running in wind.  It just makes it so difficult to catch your breath, so between the wind and the neverending hills tomorrow, well, I'm a little concerned.

Not sure of our route tomorrow.  We'll need to change it up a bit to get in the extra mile.  I actually like running different routes because my body never knows what is coming next.  I think it makes you push yourself just a little bit harder.  It's always nice to go back to the routes you know, but I think sometimes it gets boring.  Just my opinion.

Hopefully, the snow will be minimal, the wind will be nonexistant and the hills, well, the hills will be tolerable.  Those are my hopes for tomorrow's run.  Oh yes...and that I'll make it because 5 weeks is coming up quick!

Tuesday, February 21, 2012


So today, I decided to venture into the world of fartleks (or ladders).  I haven't done them in VERY long because I dread them!  The last time I did them I remember feeling like I had been run over by a train.  I hurt everywhere.  But I know that speedwork is important, so I decided to bite the bullet and do it.

Here was the plan:  5.0/5 min, walk/1 min, 5.3/4 min, walk/1 min, 5.5/3 min, walk/1 min, 6.0/2 min, walk/1min, 7.0/1 min, walk/1 min, 7.5/30 sec, walk/1 min...then go back down...I actually changed it up once I got to my 6.0.  Instead of 2 min, I did 2 1/2.  Then I did 2 at 7, 1 1/2 at 7.5 and 1 min at 8.  Went back down only to 5.8 (instead of 5.5 because I felt good) and threw in an 8.5 for 30 seconds in there.

The difference is amazing!  Granted it's been probably close to a year since I've done these, but at that time 6.0 was my 8.5!  Woo-hoo!  I'm going to try to include these once a month or so and adjust as necessary.  Maybe they will help out with my speed.  All in all, I went 4 miles in 44 min.  Great considering I walked all of those recovery periods.

I do not feel like I was run over by a train.  That is the other AMAZING difference!  I feel pretty good.  During the whole thing, I felt pretty good.  Tired, yes.  A little breathless at the top speeds, yes.  But overall, pretty good.  I don't think I dread them anymore!

Saturday, February 18, 2012

Conquering "the hill"

Today was my regular group run that's held at our local running store.  I always run these long runs with my friend, Joanne (I know I've mentioned her several times before).  The first time I went and ran there, I was shocked at how many hills there were, but one in particular seemed to kick me in the butt!  We'll refer to it as "the hill".  You'll always hit this hill a little over 1 mile from the end of the run.  So, it's when you are exhausted!  And this hill is long! 

I have never been able to run the entire hill.  Joanne always tells me "if you get to the car mailbox, you're 2/3 of the way there" and every time, I quit about there and start walking.  It truly is a tough hill!  UGH!  Today, I conquered that hill.  YES I DID!

We headed out for a 8+ mile run.  We went on a different route because we needed to add a couple of miles from the last we did.  I knew it was going to be hilly.  I've heard everyone talking about it.  They weren't lying.  It was tough.  At mile 3, I felt like it should've been mile 6.  A little after that, Joanne said "this is not for the faint of heart".  She was right.  It took everything I had in me today to complete it. 

About 2 1/2 miles from the end, I started getting a second wind.  I don't know if it was the chomps I was eating that gave me the extra energy or just knowing that we were getting close to the finish, but I definitely could feel something going on.  And then it was time for "the hill".  I actually kept my head down instead of looking straight ahead because I didn't want to know how much more I had left.  I just wanted to keep at it.  I didn't want to fail.  I wanted to conquer it and I did!  The feeling I felt at the top was unreal!  So, so happy!

I couldn't have done it without Joanne.  She motivates me, she inspires me and most of all, she encourages me - every time we run!  She believes in me.  Not to mention, I love to run with her.  We talk the entire time.  And talking certainly makes 8 miles more enjoyable.  As does conquering "the hill"!

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

To run or not to the Spring Thaw...that is the ?

So, there is a race coming up next weekend called the Spring Thaw.  You can run 10, 15 or 20 miles.  I, of course, would do the 10, as that is where I am at with my training.  I have yet to register for it (I know I am late!) because I was not quite confident enough to take it on.  But I am truly considering it now.  It is on the same course my first half will be on.  That 1/2 is scheduled for March 31st.

A friend of mine is running in the race.  I asked her if I could run along side of her.  She said YES!  So I think I am going to register for it today.  If I complete that 10 mile race, I think it would give me a boost of confidence for the 1/2 on March 31st.  I haven't told my husband yet.  Hopefully he won't mind so much!

On another note, got in a good 10 miles on the bike today.  Hoping to get out and run 2 or 3 later, but I certainly was pleased to get that in.  I've been trying to bike once or twice a week to work some different leg muscles.  I think it helps.  We'll see this weekend when I have my long run with Joanne.  I'm hoping to do 9.  Hopefully, the weather will cooperate this time.  There is certainly no guarantee for that!

Here's to a great day!

Monday, February 13, 2012

Back on track

Last week was crazy for me with the planning of Saturday's huge school fundraiser.  It threw all of my running and additional workouts off a little, so I really didn't get in the miles I think I needed to.  I did, however, finish the week strong (my week is from Mon-Sun) with a 6.05 mile run on the treadmill yesterday.  I feel pretty good about that.  What I didn't feel good about is that I hadn't worked out since Friday.  And it wasn't just because I was busy.  We were supposed to have our long run on Saturday, but it was SNOWING a lot and very, very windy.  So we decided to bag it.  Weather was definitely an issue.

This week, I plan on getting back on track.  I hope to work out at least 5 days this week with about 15-20 miles of running.  It's still quite cold out today and since I did a long run yesterday afternoon, I probably will just ride the bike today for about 30 minutes or so.  The bike isn't quite as hard on my legs or knees and I am sure they will appreciate the break.  I'll keep you posted on how that goes.

The fundraiser is behind me.  It was GREAT in more ways than one!  Now starts the church fish fries for the next 7 weeks. But at least I'll have most of my days back.  The fundraiser just took so much of my time and energy.  I was truly exhausted last week.  I think I'm starting to get my energy back.'s time to get back on track!

Friday, February 10, 2012

I need to slow down!

NO...not at running.  I need to slow down with doing other things.  Tomorrow is our school's fundraiser.  It's a huge reverse raffle.  My friend, Kathy, and I are in charge of it.  This week has been full of stress, nine thousand text messages, many, many phone calls and endless running around.  I'm exhausted!  UGH!

I've tried to keep up with my training, but this week proved to be tough.  Although I did make sure I did get some workouts in if only to keep the stress level at bay.  But my running wasn't terrific.  I'm supposed to have a long run tomorrow.  That would be GREAT!  It would be a good way to start the day before the chaos of the event night.'s supposed to snow tonight and tomorrow.  Yep, another reason I am stressed!  We don't need snow for the event and my run!  We'll see what happens.  I can't do much about the snow besides pray we don't get hammered.

I am looking forward to Sunday.  Going to church, coming home, throwing on my jammies and staying in them ALL DAY long!  I'm hoping that happens.  I'm not sure it will, but that's what I really want to do.  And sleep.  I need to catch up on sleep.  But next week start's our church fish fries for 7 weeks.  Did I mention I do a lot for that too!  I need to slow down in my every day stuff and get faster at running.  Is that possible?

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

A little pep in my step!

So this not so fast momma had a nice short run today!  I decided I would head out for a short one mile run today with one goal:  Break 10 minutes.  I know, that might seem like a joke to some that are quick runners, but to me, it's no joke!  I haven't been under 10 minutes since before my lyme disease.  That was the end of June.  And I was only that fast because I focused on speed work for a 2K for weeks.  Right now I am focusing on endurance more than speed for the 1/2 marathon.  But was a great day!  I ran my mile in 9:36!  Woo-hoo!  I was so excited!

Actually, I'm still on a little high.  So, you know that the next time I try for the mile time trial, it has to be under 9:30, right?  That's just the way it works for me.  I'm always wanting to get better.

Back to the 1/2 marathon.  It's coming up soon.  7 1/2 weeks to be exact!  Holy cow!  When I think about it, I actually get really nervous and tend to doubt myself.  But I know my friends will pull me across the finish line.  My running buddy, Joanne, is so encouraging to me when we run.  I think she can always tell when I need to hear, "you're doing great!" because she seems to say it at just the right time.  I know she will be there waiting for me along with my other friends cheering me on.  It's going to be a great day! 

I'm not looking to finish the 1/2 in any specific time.  I just want to finish.  And I want to finish strong!  Hopefully, the hard work and training will pay off.  I'm sure it will and it will be an accomplishment that I never would have imagined.  I'm a runner about that?

Monday, February 6, 2012

The stress of it all!

So this week is a really stressful week.  My friend, Kathy, and I are in charge of the school's biggest fundraiser.  The fundraiser is a reverse raffle which is being held on Saturday night.  Not only is it a reverse raffle, but we have many other things going on that night as well.  A chinese auction, silent auction and a live auction.  It's a great night filled with a lot of fun and excitement!'s a lot of work to plan.  I'm sure I'll be at the school every day this week, as well as several nights.  So needless to say, I'm a little stressed.  So to get rid of some of that stress, I decided to go for a run today.  Horrible idea!  Everything felt bad, especially on my left side.  I have this big toe issue that has been bothering me for about a month now.  Not sure what is going on, but it hurts.  Not all of the time, but through most of my runs.  Then my left hamstring and calf were really tight as well.  UGH!  So, it wasn't my best run.  Good thing I forgot my watch.  I think my time would've been HORRIBLE!  I did end up doing 3.2 though.

I felt a little bit bad when I came in after that run because I knew it wasn't such a great run.  So to make up for it, I rode the bike for just over 5 miles.  It felt much better on my body and I felt better knowing that I did a little more.  And wouldn't you know, I forgot about everything that needed done for the fundraiser.  My mind was clear, if for just a short while.  I love exercise!

Saturday, February 4, 2012

It was a great kind of running day!

My usual Saturday morning partner, Joanne, couldn't run this morning.  So I was left to do my long run on my own.  Not that I haven't done it before, but it has gotten more enjoyable to have someone with me. 

This morning, my hubby said to me "do you want me to run with you?"  I said, " Are you going to run all 7 with me?"  I knew he would struggle with that distance.  He hasn't run since November.  So we decided that I would run the 4.5 or so to begin (that's the hilly road work) and he would meet me at the trail to finish up the last 3 1/2.

I had a great pace going through the 4.5.  Kip and I met there at the exact same time, I was coming up the hill, he was coming down it.  He was surprised to see me as he left the house a little early, but my pace was really good.  Then it hit...a wall.  I started feeling really bad...tired, no energy.  But it didn't last long!  Then I got back into my rhythm.  We slowed down a bit for Kip, as he has a bit of a cold and as I mentioned before he hasn't run since November.  But I didn't mind slowing down.  I just enjoyed having some company! 

All in all, I ran 8 miles in 1:29:39.  I think it came out to a 11:13 pace.  Great for a long run for me!  Kip seems to think it would've been around 1:15, but I didn't slow that much for him.  I maybe could've picked up 4-5 minutes, no more.  I felt great after the run.  We'll see how the body feels tomorrow.  I wanted to get in 7 today and I got in that's a success! :)

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Holy cow...I'm still running!

In January 2011, I told myself I wanted to run a 5K.  I did that just so I could prove to myself that I could do it.  I wanted to complete something athletic before I turned 40.

I would never have told you prior to me running that I am an athlete.  Sure, I played volleyball in high school for 2 years.  But I wasn't great at it.  I'm much better at it now.  I am not a natural athlete.  If I want to do something athletic, I have to work really, really hard at it.  My husband is a natural athlete.  He could probably play almost any sport.  Not me!

Don't get me wrong...I love playing sports.  I just find it fun.  I'm not great at many sports, but I am kind of competitive.  OK...I'm really competitive.  I like to win.  So it's funny that I run, because I am not fast (hence the name of my blog).  I'll never win at running.  Never.  There are just soooo many people out there who are much, much faster than me.  But I'm ok with that.  I am.  I'm just proud of myself for doing it.

Today, while I was running on the dreadmill I realized that holy cow...I'm still running!  I think when I said I was going to run a 5K, I figured I would run it and be done.  But not so.  I've run several 5Ks and a 10K and I'm registered for 2 half marathons this year.  I'm still running!  The girl who was never athletic is an athlete.  Who would've believed that?  Not me.

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

The good with the bad

So yesterday proved to be good in some ways and bad in some ways.  The good was that I was able to get my run in and did pretty well.  It was a nice day, although VERY windy with gusts of 30 miles an hour, but I was able to get in 3 miles at 32 minutes.   Totally happy with that.  So I was thinking to myself that this wasn't going to be such a bad day.  But I was wrong.

Not sure what happened.  My dog had surgery which I was prepared for, but when she got home, she just looked so sad.  It broke my heart.  And then that stupid cone she has to wear.  She bumped into so much and looked at me almost begging to take that thing off.  Again, it broke my heart.  Then I broke a present my son got.  Not on purpose...I tripped over it.  It was only a month old and cost $160.  Crap!  Are you kidding me?  We just had to pay the deductible for my husband's auto accident, the surgery for my dog, the school tuition (my kids go to a Catholic school) and now this!  I just sat there and cried!  My daughter came over and tried to console me a little bit.  Barely had time to scarf down some dinner as I had a meeting and the whole breaking of the gift happened at about 5:30.   Ugh! 

However, at the meeting, some of my friends told me to return the item that broke to the store that it had to be defective.  I will try to do that before I panic.  If they take it back, I will be SOOOO happy. 

I slept in the living room with the dog last night just because I was worried about her.  So needless to say I did not get much sleep at all!  I am very tired today.  Not sure I'll get a run in.  If I don't, I'll go and workout with my neighbor and then run tomorrow.  Hopefully, today will be all good and no bad.  We'll see...