Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Hello Blog, Long time no See!

I am sitting on my bed, looking at a large pile of laundry and thinking of all the things I should be getting done this morning. And I am not in the mood to do any of it, so I think I'll FINALLY write a post.

We have had a lovely fall, with very little snow so far. That is unusual, and it the general opinion seems to be: if it starts late, beware! I am thinking there will be lots of snow soon enough. I have been running as much as I can, getting in the mileage before the weather turns, and before I am forced to take at least a few weeks off, (more on that later).

Monthly totals the last few months:
August: 133
September: 140
October: 143
November: 151

I have been so pleased that I've been able to up my mileage and hold a good 35-40 mile per week average WITHOUT INJURY!!! Huge accomplishment! My 151 miles in November was the highest mileage I have hit that I know of. I am over 1300 miles for 2011. This makes me happy.

This month will probably be a little less, but we will see. I have been feeling strong and great on most of my 7-9 mile runs. My goal is to be able to run 13-14 miles any day and feel as strong. A few weeks ago I ran 12, and I was hurting my the end.

Goals for 2012
  • Get back to speed work! My speed has been seriously lacking, and I have been hesitant because of injury
  • A sub-2 half. I have been so close a few times, but keep falling short. Thus the speed work!
  • Hopefully, a marathon-most likely Portland
That's all I've got at the moment. I am sure that list will grow.

January will be a low mileage, (if any) month for me. I am trying not to dread it. At least it won't be for injury for once! I am having surgery on January 4th. I was hoping to get it over with in December, but no such luck. The surgery will be laparoscopic, so the recovery should only be 2-3 weeks or so, but it depends somewhat on how things go.

(sorry if it's TMI) I had massive complications after baby #3, and spent two quality weeks in ICU. I do not recommend this. Things have never quite been right since, so they are going in trying to figure out why, hopefully fix what they find, and to deal with a few cysts. Fun, huh? Hopefully it will be a simple fix, but we shall see. (if anyone wants the long version, let me know)

It is weird to think of taking weeks off without even being able to cross train. They say it's good to give your body a break once in a while, so maybe I will come back rested and ready to train hard. In the snow that is sure to have arrived by then.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Tale of the Worst 5K Ever

Seriously, I would have to check, but I am pretty sure it is my slowest 5k EVER. Not how I expected the race to go. Oh, and forgive typos and errors, my backspace button is broken. How inconvenient is that?!?!

Backing up a bit, this was the Running Y 5K for the humane society. I haven't run a 5k in forever, and i really haven't done speed work in forever, so I had pretty mediocre aspirations for this race. I even joked than anything under 30 minutes was fine with me.

Oh, backing up a little more, I have chronic migraines/headaches. My doctor put me on a new medication hoping to help with his problem. One possible risk, it could slightly lower my (already low) blood pressure. I could just see how it goes.

Race morning: chaos in sues. Kid 1: pick up from birthday party, deliver to soccer. Kid 3: deliver to birthday party. Kid 2: whining that she did not get to do the things kid 1 or 3 did. Add a fight over clothes since we were having our first fall weather, and it was a doozy of a morning.

I got to the race on time, and warmed up a little with A. I was actually wearing a matching outfit, (unusual for me), but due to previous chaos, I don't have a picture. Need to work on that.

We start. Whoa, not used to running with dogs. Right, humane society. hadn't thought of that. OKay, deal with the dogs. Mile 1: 8:38 all uphill, difficult, but doable knowing I had a few downhills. The course looped the golf course more or less, and was surprisingly hilly.

Then things got interesting. Around mile 1.3 I start to feel funny. then I start to see black spots. that can't be good. I slow down a bit, and actually walk through a water stop (in a 5k!). I start up again. Oh, hello black and colored spots now! Dancing! And my hands are numb. Huh. And my feet. That can't be good. seriously, what's with the spots? I slow more. take a quick walk break. It gets a little better. I speed up, hello spots. Dang it. I am leapfrogging a few ladies and feeling ridiculous, like I need to explain that I am a real runner! I can run a 5k! But holy crap can someone take the dang spots away?

The finish. Uphill. a very big uphill. I have been working very hard on hills, but this one defeats my already shredded ego and body. I just want to be done. The course is not well marked, and weird. We finish by cutting across a basketball court then through the parking lot. Finish time, 31:23. Over 30 minutes. for a 5k.

Now let me say, I know a lot of people that run 5k's slower than 30 minutes all the time and that is fantastic. For me, I was bummed knowing I can do better.

A asked if I was okay, which was a big no. I swear birdies were flying over my head. I drank my nuun I had packed, thankfully, and that seemed to help some. It was like I had massive low blood sugar, but that didn't make sense. or low blood pressure. Oh! The light dawned. That would explain the spots and the tingles and why I didn't feel like I could stand up anymore.

I felt odd and weak the rest of the day, and laid pretty low. Sunday morning I still felt so low energy and weird. Walking downstairs felt way harder than it should. We stopped at Fred Meyer's on the way home to get gas, and I went inside to use the blood pressure machine out of curiosity. BP 79/58. Whoa. I have low blood pressure typically 100/80ish, but dang! I've never seen it that low. /that explains a lot.

needless to say, I am NOT taking the medication anymore, and when I see my doctor on thursday, we will come up with a plan b that does not involve me seeing spots, thank you very much.

Saturday, September 10, 2011

What I think when it's Dark

I got up at 4:10am to run this morning. It was very very early, and very very dark. My mind was playing funny tricks on me this morning, so I started composing a list in my head. So here we go, (fair warning-very random)

  1. Wearing a headlamp helps a lot. Except it ruins your night vision, so everything outside the beam looks a little freaky.
  2. Headlamp+sweaty forehead=zits. Lame.
  3. I wonder what I look like to cars before they realize I'm a runner?
  4. Why are cars out at 4:30am on a Saturday?
  5. What must they think of ME running in the dark at 4:30am on a Saturday?
  6. Crap! Almost stepped on roadkill. I don't even know what animal it was. Ew!
  7. I think it was a raccoon. Maybe. Why am I still thinking about the dead thing?
  8. Eek! Eyes everywhere! Where did they go? There they are, wth?
  9. Oh, cats. Okay. That's not so bad. A herd of cats? There must be six or seven. Creepy eyes. Quit looking at me!
  10. Oh hello deer family eating breakfast. Um, why is the buck running next to me? Seriously, two blocks? I have a new running partner! Oh, back to his family he goes. That was so weird.
A lot can happen between 4:30-6am when your mind is working overdrive. 9.38 miles done before 6am. The amazing part? It's 2pm and I'm still awake.

Friday, September 9, 2011

Tears and Trails

Whew, what a week. I mean whoa. School started for the kids on Tuesday/Wednesday. Yay! I felt a little bad that all the other parents were crying dropping of their kids, and I just felt like doing a happy dance. I'm free!

Okay, that sounds bad, I know. I love my kids. I love being home with my kids. I am blessed to have the opportunity. But I have been home for 8 years, and I am ready for some "me" time. In the daylight. That's right, no more running at 4:30am for me!

What did I do on Wednesday when all three kids were in school? I went for a run. And I just kept going, until I realized I didn't have THAT much time, and I'd better head home. 9.3 miles later. In the daylight. It was great!
The adjustment to school itself this week has had it's rough moments. Oh boy. The 2nd grader is great and is the best brown-nose there is. I'm somewhat proud, somewhat embarrassed about that one. The kindergartner-that's been a little rough. She was SO excited. The first day was FANTASTIC. Day two, not so much. The bus? Um yeah, fail. I got called to come pick her up yesterday because she was terrified of the bus. What? This is my tough kid. The one that nothing phases. The one with my guts than sense. Of course, she is also the kid who still needs a nap. That could have something to do with it. JJ is in preschool for half day, and is loving it. I think. I did have to pry her off my arm this morning. So I wouldn't be late for a running date. Priorities you know.

Trail Running
  1. Trail running is HARD. The hills are brutal.
  2. The view at the top is awesome. I mean incredible. Most of the way the view is fantastic. I am just not coordinated enough to take my eyes off my feet for long!
  3. Hearing animals in the woods is a little freaky. We heard something big that was definitely not a deer. Probably a cougar. Oh boy.
  4. Trail running makes you dirty. Really dirty. And there are a lot of bugs/
    spider webs/etc
  5. My skin does not enjoy the weeds we run through. I've broken out in a rash each time, but Benedryl takes care of it.
  6. Benedryl makes me sleepy.
  7. 6 miles on hilly trails feels like 10.
  8. I'm afraid to take my nail polish off. I think I have my first black toenail. Again, half proud, half dreading.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Weekend Rewind

How is it that time goes so slow and so fast all at once? I blinked, and the weekend was gone. Wait, it's Tuesday? Crap.

So here's how it went down:
  • Thursday/Friday my ankle was making noise so no running. I made a pathetic effort at core work and push ups to make up for it. Yeah, pathetic.
  • Saturday I was going to run first thing. First thing turned into 10am. It was hot, and I didn't bring my handheld. I am a GENIUS! I knew I was in trouble when I stopped sweating over a mile from home. Finished with 6 miles, but had a killer headache the rest of the day.
  • Sunday I got up early to get in some miles before church. Squeezed in 7 miles, and still had time to shower and get to church on time. Go me.
This week already has me as a messed up ball of stress. It is not pretty. One minute I'm okay, the next I'm screaming at the kids for leaving a toy in my living room that I JUST CLEANED! What is going on that is so stressful?

We were waiting for word on hubby's job-a sort of promotion into a permanent slot leading up to the official promotion in November. Chief What's-his-name already told him the job was his, we were just waiting for the official announcement. went to the other guy. Wait, WTH? The guy with the lower rank, less time in service, and less qualifications? Huh?

How is this running related? Well, I had intended to get up early as usual for a run Monday morning. I had (another) bad headache, so it just didn't happen. I figured I would go later, or just rest or whatever. Until this news came at lunch time. I was already having a DAY with the kids, and this just sent me over the edge. It was either cry, scream, or eat the frosting in my fridge. I needed a run! So, I called my friend A and begged her to keep my kids for an hour. Like a good friend, she knew I was on the edge in a big way, and I was able to drop off the three crazies and run for my life. 5 painful miles in the mid day heat. It was great. Hilly, hard, and completely consuming and distracting from everything else. And suddenly, I could be mom without screaming at them for everything. Mostly. (seriously, school needs to start NOW)

The next stressful event on the agenda? My mother-in-law is coming to visit tomorrow. And staying with us, for the first time in 8 years. They always stay in hotels. Oh boy. Let the cleaning frenzy begin. My MIL likes to stay busy, but there is little to do around here since it is peak bug season. We'll see how it goes.

In other news, my shoes are already about dead. Sheesh. I just got them in May, but I am over 400 miles in them and my feet are starting to hurt after runs. I run in the Asics Nimbus, but would like to switch into a lighter shoe I think. I just hate ordering something that MIGHT work, when I know the Nimbus works fine and I won't have to deal with any returns. There isn't a running store around here within 200 miles to go try anything on. Suggestions? I am tempted by the Newtons Distance, and the New Balance Minimas, but wonder if I still need a more heavy duty shoe for longer runs?

Friday, August 12, 2011

An Eventful Run

Remember how I am running at 4:30am? And that it's very dark? I was going to get out my headlamp, right? But I forgot Wednesday morning. It was early, and I didn't want to go digging through the garage since I don't know exactly where my headlamp is. I have been running every day in the dark, what's one more?

Event #1
Running along with my ipod on very low, listening to my feet and crickets. Out jumps a big 6 point buck 4 feet in front of me. My heart went in my throat. Scary! He meandered away, not at all concerned about the gasping human.

Event #2
I run in bright reflective clothing, even though I didn't have a light. Neon pink running skirt, white reflective top. Typically there is not much traffic to worry about. About a mile into my run I was going down a quiet, narrow street, the speed limit is 25mph. A truck comes roaring up the hill going at least 40. I move over, he does not. I end up jumping in the bushes on the shoulder. Awesome.

Event #3
On the way home now, running up the big long hill. It is feeling easier (finally!). It is still really dark. Normally the sky is lightening by now, the days must be getting shorter. Bummer. Crossing the street, running along. I step in a big hole, and roll my ankle. Ugh, really? Thankfully I have gumby ankles. I roll them all the time, and have sprained that right ankle so many times I don't think it is possible to sprain it. I am hurting for a few blocks, and after that it isn't so bad. And now I'm needing to speed up so I'm not late getting home.

Walk in the door at 5:47 (hubby likes to leave by 5:45). Garmin is at 5.44. Normally I like to do sprints or short hill repeats in front of my house to land on even mileage. My ankle is making some noise-I'll call it good.

Not the most successful run ever, but I got it done. We went about our normal day. I laid around for a good part of the afternoon, because I was GRUMPY and the kids were driving me CRAZY. A new book was a good thing to hide in. When I finally got up and around in the evening. my ankle was a little sore. Huh. Unusual. I set my alarm like normal.

Get up at 4:22, walk to the bathroom to get dressed. Ouch. Really? Still complaining, ankle? Not cool. One day of rest won't hurt. And my bed did feel pretty good.

Friday morning, set the alarm for 5 planning on just doing 2-3 miles to see how it goes. It hurts to point my toes. Seriously? I am feeling like I have the absolute worst luck with injuries and sickness lately. So frustrating! And with a complaining ankle, there isn't a lot of other things I can do for exercise. Can't dance, can't do yoga, can't do any of my videos, had to do push-ups and planks on my knees. Two days off, including not great eating, not great for weight loss.

I am down two pounds. Well, I was on Wednesday. Yesterday there was cake. And pizza. Sigh.

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Running is...

Running is hard. Sometimes. Other times, it is euphoric and wonderful. We need those runs to keep us going on the craptastic days that happen to all of us. (please say they happen to all of us!)Running when it is early and you are tired is hard. Running when you can see the stars and there are no cars is beautiful. Running and feeling those extra pounds jiggle is frustrating. Running and seeing the muscles in your legs is empowering.

Life gets in the way of running. So does laziness. Yesterday was a combination. I planned to get up early, but I was just too tired. I needed rest. I planned to run when I woke up. But then there were things that needed to get done. I'll run in the afternoon. We decided it was the day to take the training wheels off my 5 year olds bike and ride. I ran along side her, but that doesn't really count. Would I have wanted to miss that moment? Not a chance. And of course we had to get ice cream after. Now I definitely need a run. And then my son lost a tooth. His sister kicked it out, (thankfully a baby tooth that WAS loose). You can imagine how well that went over. Suddenly my day was over, and my chance to run had been missed. Life happens, especially with kids.

So I was up bright and early. Okay, very dark and early out the door by 4:30am. My legs felt tired even with the rest day. I started on my way, enjoying the stars and a cool morning. I love that about living here. It is August, and it was 47 degrees this morning. by mile 1, I was starting to enjoy my run. By mile 2, my stomach was telling me in no uncertain terms that it was unhappy and I needed a pit stop. Um yeah, nothing is open at 4:30am. I detoured to home. I was just shy of 3 miles, and didn't want to end there. I headed back out and did another small loop to end just past 5 miles.

Then my day started. All three kids to the dentist by 8am (never again will I make an 8am apt). The kids are up by 7am, but getting them dressed, fed, and out the door in a timely matter is frustrating to say the least. And why, WHY does someone ALWAYS lose their shoes when it is time to go? Directly after the dentist, we had a preschool interview for JJ. Whoa, they really meant interview. Colors, shapes, count to 20, find the letters in your name from random order, etc. It was a little stressful!

Good news! She passed! And now I give myself a mommy pat on the back for teaching her enough to pass. Whew!

I need to do my second workout this afternoon, but I'll admit, I am seriously considering a nap.

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Summer Running, Silly Kids

Summer weather is here! Which is great! And happy! And wonderful! And it is finally HOT! So what does this mean for my running? Running at 4pm is no longer much of an option. Too hot, and way too buggy.

This is a midge. Around here, they are more bright green than this
photo, but they are EVERYWHERE. The good news is, they eat the mosquitoes, and they don't bite. However, they hang out in big clouds of buggy nastiness, making in very hard to run without ingesting more of them than I care to think about.

Combine hot weather with the eating of many green bugs, and suddenly getting up before 4:30am to run doesn't sound THAT bad. Until about three days in, then I am starting to consider fighting off the bugs.

Running in the early morning is a different experience all together. Some interesting things I have seen this week:
  • Bats-lots of bats that like to hang under and overpass I run under for pretty much all my routes. I've only been dive bombed once, which was kind of freaky, other than that they aren't so bad.
  • Deer-a lot of deer that are not all that worried about one solitary runner in the early morning. That means, I get to stop and wait for the deer to meander out of my way.
  • Even though it's the middle of summer, it is DARK at 4:30. For some reason I have resisted using my headlamp, because Hello! It's summer! This lasted until I almost biffed it big time tripping on a crack I did not see. It would have been a stupendous fall.
  • Hills seem harder in the dark. I realize this is all in my head, but dang, the hills are beating me up! and no matter where I run, I am looking at a climb of at least 1 mile straight up to get home. I know they will make me a stronger runner, and I'm thankful for that, but right now I just feel out of shape and annoyed.

I will leave this post with a couple of quotes from my kids

(at walmart grocery shopping) K: "Mom! You should get this! It says it will help you los

e some pounds! See, it says right here, lose 5 pounds in 2 weeks! You should get it and lose some pounds" Gee, thanks. The lady shopping next to us tried to hold in her laughter, and just couldn't. I agree. It was pretty stinking funny.

A, to her brother and sister: "You need to treat me like royalty! Don't you know that? You need to treat me like royalty, and this is most certainly not the way you treat royalty!"

A: "Mom, if girls have to wear shirts when it's hot, so should boys. Because that's not fair. And besides, no body wants to see THAT!"

And a picture of JJ who was clearly hot at bedtime. She looks like she was shot and fell that way. Play hard, crash hard. And yeah, she is clearly getting too big for her toddler bed.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Please Work, Blogger!~

Blogger has NOT been cooperating with me lately. Has anyone else had this problem? I have had 4 posts not go through, and not save. Not cool. Who has time to write the same thing over again???
So quick recap-I had a bad case of bronchitis after Seattle RNR. Not good at all. It equaled almost 2 weeks off of running, since every time I tried I sounded like an 80 year old with emphysema. I am finally better, and managed to log 25 miles last week. Sad to say, that was a lot comparatively.
My dad and my (half) sister came and visited this
weekend. Very fun, very crazy. Throw in an Air Show, (which meant work for hub
by), and the whole weekend was crazy. We took a trip up to Crater Lake yesterday, a first for my hubby and kids. I had forgotten how incredible it is up there! They had a record amount of snow this year, (over 12 feet), and there was still a lot in places. Like where we planned our picnic. Fail. So we tailgated our picnic lunch.
The Crater Lake Rim Run is in a few weeks, (half marathon, marathon, or 6.7 miles). I did not make the cut off to sign up, and honestly, I'm kind of glad! Seeing the hills and feeling the altitude was intimidating just on the short hike we took. I know I could not have run the half. This year. Next year, oh yeah, I am so in!
I need a race on my calender. I've got nothing! So that is this weeks goal. Find a race that I can afford-that is the tricky part. And make a training plan to get serious. My weight is slightly up, my speed is way down, and my overall conditioning is sad. I've got some work to do!

(Thanks Kerrie, for telling me how to fix blogger!)

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

I'm Confused

Am I injured? Or not?

On Sunday my knee really hurt. Monday morning, I was feeling pretty good. I wasn't sore anymore, and I could straighten my knee without pain. Great. I dance on Monday, and felt just fine. Tuesday, more rest-mostly because of the awful cold I came down with on Saturday night.

Today I met my friend Lisa for an easy run. I told her I would give it a try if I was pain free. We did 4.5 miles at a nice easy pace. She is a little slower, and I was coughing enough where it felt good to go slow. My knee? Felt totally fine. I had a tiny little twinge around mile 3, and then nothing. No pain afterwards, no swelling. Nothing.

What the? I'm confused. On Saturday I wanted to saw off my own leg it hurt so freaking bad. I mean bad! It was swollen and angry on Saturday night and Sunday morning. And now it's, good? I'm not sure what to think, other than I seriously need some better Race Mojo.

My body is messing with me.

Hopefully I will have time to finish my Seattle recap soon. Right now, my kids are driving me CRAZY. My hubby gets here tomorrow night, so I will have backup with the kids-just in time for the insanity that is all of us being in a wedding. Awesome.

Monday, June 27, 2011

Seattle RNR Quick Update

What a great weekend! The expo was a lot of fun, the Bloggy dinner was a fantastic party, and the race was pretty great too.

Okay, the race did not go as I had hoped-but I finished, and got a pretty medal for my effort. I will take it! My time was 2:15ish. I am not on my computer, so I can't load my official Garmin time, and I dont' have the patience for the RNR website. I'll do that later.

My knee was unhappy with my from about mile 7 on, making it a battle of wills to the finish. The will to keep going, but at the same time not to push too hard through the pain and hurt myself more. Success on both accounts! I finished in a ok time, and my knee is already feeling better. I haven't run, but I am feeling better than Saturday and Sunday for sure!

Most importantly, I am done beating myself up over having a few bad races. I have been plagued by injuries all spring, and I have not trained well. Or really, at all. I have gotten mileage in, but in quantity, not quality. No speed work, no tempo work.

So next goal? Get healthy! And then work hard to train better. I will write a full race report with pictures later.

Monday, June 20, 2011

You have Got to be Kidding Me!

First of all, I hope everyone had a fantastic Father's Day spent with family. Our day was great. I woke up early to run, but had a killer headache. Ow. So, I went back to sleep. It didn't take too much convincing to not get up at 5am on a Sunday.

I got up and made my hubby french toast. Yummy. (after that I felt a little bad about missing my run) We headed to church, and did a barbecue afterwards. After nap time we dropped the kids off with some friends, and we went for a hike.

The big hill/hike around here is called Hogsback. You can go straight up the face and along the ridge line, or go around the side where it is slightly less steep. I hadn't done the easier route before, but knew it was a better choice for hubby.

It was a gorgeous day! Warm and windy, but the wind felt good while we were climbing. We saw a lot of wildlife: deer, 4 snakes (almost stepped on one), 3 lizards, 2 rock chucks, and various birds. The wildflowers were amazing, and I was enjoying our date. So much more fun than a movie! Hubby had to rest a few times, the hike is steep.

The top was awesome, and a huge accomplishment for him! Almost 3000ft vertical climbing in 2 miles. Yeah, and that's the easy route. I was feeling fantastic the whole time, so much that sometimes I forgot to wait for him. Oops.

We started down, just enjoying everything about the day. We were 3/4 of the way down, and I had to stop. Ouch! My knee! I hadn't fallen, or done anything to it, but suddenly it felt off. Like something had shifted? I don't know, just off. We stopped for a moment, and I stretched it out. I wiggled it this way and that until I felt like it was fine. We kept going, and it felt pretty normal. We ran the last few flat spots and raced to the car. Hubby cracked me up, he said "I gave up being competitive when I married YOU, knowing I would never win at anything again." I felt proud and sheepish all at once.
We headed home, and fed dinner to the family that was willing to take our three monkeys for the afternoon. I went to bed, happily exhausted, but with my knee feeling a little funny when I straightened it. I didn't think much of it.

I woke up this morning, and my knee hurts. It hurts to straighten it, it hurts to walk without a limb. Oh no, oh no. This cannot be happening! I did not just work my way back from a shin injury to hurt my KNEE less than a week before Seattle RNR! No no no no.

I have no idea what is going on with it. I was supposed to have a dance class this morning that I canceled, and I have a running date with a new running buddy tonight at 7pm. I will be canceling that too, although I really don't want to!

For now, I am icing like a crazy woman, and praying that whatever is tweaked in there, rights itself quickly. I am supposed to drive to Washington tomorrow morning! Sigh. Sometimes I think my body doesn't want me to be a runner. Isn't that silly?

Thursday, June 16, 2011

7 Morning Miles

Yesterday I knew I was not going to have time to fit in my run. The afternoon was busy, and warm. I not acclimatized to running when it is hot yet! Monday afternoon A and I ran our loop downtown and ran some errands, (literally). Run to the bank, the store, etc. We came home the trail and it was HOT. We finished with 8 miles instead of the 5-6 we had planned. which reminds me, how much do you taper before a half?

Tuesday we went shopping all day. I planned to run after we were home, but FAIL. My feet were tired. It didn't happen.

Yesterday I knew I had a fondue party in the evening to go to. Mmmm cheese and chocolate and all the goodies to dip in it. What's not to like? I wanted to get up early to run to make sure I was burning off some of the calories I planned to eat.

My alarm when off at 4:25. Wow, that is early. I had had a hard time falling asleep, so I only slept about 5 hours. Not ideal, but I got up anyways. I checked the temp outside-whoa only 35 degrees! I put on my fleece shirt and gloves.

With my hubby's work schedule, I have become an evening runner more often than not. This morning run felt like a special treat. The sky was just starting to lighten, and it was so incredibly quiet. I was wearing my ipod, but never did turn it on as I was enjoying the sounds of the birds, crickets and frogs.

About a mile in, I saw a herd of deer crossing the road. I kept going thinking they would move. They just looked at me like, "what? you want US to move?". It made me laugh. The deer around here are not all that scared of people. Maybe I should be worried.

They repaved the trail around here, which we were all excited about. New pavement to run on! But, they did a crappy job. I mean seriously. It is already cracked with dirt showing through, and it is not at all even. I ran downhill on it, and it did not feel great on the inside of my calf muscle. You know? that funny muscle that is impossible to stretch? Yeah, still hurts. Stupid trail.

I looped through downtown and enjoyed how quiet it is at 5am. No cars, no waiting at the lights, just being able to run and enjoy it. After downtown, all uphill to home. Very uphill. I love where our new house is, but being on top of a hill has it's downsides. Mostly that no matter which direction I run, there is a big uphill for at least a mile to home. It will make the hills in Seattle seem easy!

I got home at was at 6.42 for mileage. I hate ending mid-mile, especially with Dailymile. They either round up or down, either way it feels like being robbed. I checked inside, hubby was still in the shower. He obviously wasn't waiting for me, so I ran out and finished the half mile to end at an even 7.

There is something so awesome about being able to run 7 miles before 6am, when the rest of the world is still asleep. I should get up early more often.

The slight downside-it's 6am, and I can't shower or it will wake up the kids, or make any coffee. A pop tart was the only easy (quiet) thing I could find to eat. Going to have to work on that!

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Let Summer Begin!

Schools out for Summer! Ballet recital is DONE! Yay! I am so happy that I will not need to put my poor sore feet into pointe shoes for a good long while. This week was exhausting and I celebrated the end of it by sleeping in this morning. Sleeping in with three kids means interruptions, but going back to sleep after they are set with breakfast and cartoons. I'll take it!

I am thrilled school is out, but it was a little distressing that my two oldest were fighting in the first 45 minutes of him being out of school. About geometry. How many 7 and 5 year old argue about geometry?
K "Two triangles make a rhombus."
A "Two triangles do NOT make a rhombus, they make a square. Or a diamond. Are you sure you are in second grade now? Shouldn't you know this stuff?" (my 5 year old is such a smarty pants) Me telling them that they were technically both right did not go over well. I hope this doesn't set the tone for the whole summer!

This afternoon I have 12 miles with A planned. It will be my longest run since my injury, and my last long run before Seattle. Normally I really enjoy long runs, but this one I'm a little nervous about. My legs are tired I know, and my toes are not loving me either. We will see how it goes.

Normally before a half, I like running a long run of at least 14 miles, knowing I won't have to go that far on race day. This year, obviously I'm of out time. I know I can finish 13.1-I've done it many times. Seeing my goal time and corral start made me a little sad, knowing that my "a" goal of 1:50 is not even a slight possibility.

So what are my goals for Seattle? Finish, obviously. As for time? I don't really know. I have done no speed work, few long runs, and my running schedule is a mess. So should I just run and enjoy it, or try and race and hope I don't bonk? The lack of altitude will work in my favor, but I don't know how much.

We'll see how 12 goes this afternoon!

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Lake of the Woods Race Recap (finally)

First of all, Friday I got a brutal migraine. Not cool. Unfortunately said migraine usually arrives around that time of the month. Awesome timing, huh? I took my meds, tried to eat anyways, and hoped for the best for Saturday morning. I told my hubby if I woke up with a migraine, I would just bail on the race. (the advantage of it only having a $15 entrance fee)

Saturday morning I woke up with a medicine hangover, but very little headache. I was still a little on the fence about racing-which is unusual. The kids got up ridiculously early for a Saturday, so that sealed the deal. May as well drive to the race!

The race was only about 45 minutes away, and we got there in plenty of time to get parking and pick up my stuff. Pretty low-key start, which was great. They did a kids dash around 9am, and started the 5k and 15k together at 9:30. I lined up at the front not because I wanted to go out fast, but because I didn't want to dodge people, strollers, and dogs. Yeah, people did this race with their dogs. (only 5k)

You know sometimes you start out in a race, and you can tell in the first mile it just isn't your day? It was like that. I didn't feel bad, but I didn't feel good either. My legs felt heavy at the very beginning. Not encouraging! My friend Amber and I pre-race. She won first place female, 5th overall!

The first 2 miles are uphill. Not super steep, but a steady climb. After that starts the rolling hills. Lots and lots of them. The course loops the whole lake, but you can only see the lake from certain points.

"Make sure you keep the kids out of the water-I didn't bring extra clothes" (yeah, I wasted my breath-they were soaked)

I decided to try the Galloway run/walk knowing I was going to have trouble racing the distance. Since I have not practiced doing this, it didn't go all that smoothly. First, I would forget to stop at regular intervals. Then, my walks were poorly timed with the water stops, so I would have to walk again. The water stops were off the road, so you really did have to walk through them. (the road was not closed to traffic). When I would start running again, I think I would take off too fast, wanting to make up the time, and it was driving me crazy having people leapfrog me. I looked down and was running a 7:42 shortly after a walk break. I am NOT in shape to maintain that!

We looped around the back side of the lake around mile 5, and then it got ugly. More rolling hills, but more uphills than down. The downhills were short, but steep. I was trying to take it easy on the downhills to save my shin, but that meant I trashed my quads instead. Crap. I slowed down.

Lake of the woods is about 6000ft in elevation, so pretty high up, and cold. It was about 40 degrees at the start. Running around the back side of the lake, we were having to run in the tire tracks that were mostly clear of snow. Otherwise there was between 2-3 feet of snow on the road. Nice, huh? Some June weather!

So add snow to that back loop with punishing hills, and I was suddenly really wishing I had run the 5k. I felt like I was getting a blister on the ball of my left foot. It was on fire! Not a good feeling.

We come down off the back side, and have to run along the highway for about 1 1/2 miles. As soon as we turned that corner, the wind was blowing hard in your face. Awesome. That mile and a half felt like forever, but I did not want to walk on the highway with all that traffic.

Turn off the highway, last 1.4 miles or so. It felt so much longer! Gradual uphill, but it felt horrible. I was glad to not be the only one walking on this stretch. Finally, the last turn to the finish. It was blessedly downhill! Which hurt an amazing amount considering. I did chick two guys on the last half mile, that made me feel better after being passed by several people the last two miles of the race.

Final stats: 15k 9.24 miles

Time: 1:32 11

Pace: 9:57 So glad to be done!

Elevation: 2509 Ascent, 2451 Descent

Next year, I am going to be prepared to RACE this and kill my time. This year, not so pretty, but glad I did it anyways.

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

When Hobbies Intrude on My Run

This week's schedule is a little insane. It is the last week of school for Monkey-boy, and hey, for kicks, let's throw in 3 field trips this week. Awesome. That adds some running around and some weird pick-up times to my week. Okay, no big deal.

But wait, there's more! (Don't you just LOVE infomercials?) This week is also the big ballet recital. Which means rehearsal EVERY DAY, and shows on Friday and Saturday. So, with rehearsals eating up all my afternoons, when will I fit in my run?

I am starting to feel somewhat time crunched with Seattle looming a few weeks away, and knowing I am not in top shape. Okay, not even close. The 15k this last weekend KICKED MY BUTT! I blame insane hills. (a separate race report on that coming) This post is partially to explain the delay in the race report. :)

Brainstorm! I can run to class. Sure, I will get there all sweaty-but hey! I leave all sweaty anyways. It is about 5 miles to the studio from my house if I take the trail, (slightly longer route). I think I can get home in 3 miles. Or, if my legs are dead-tired, I can call for a ride.

So I have a small hydration backpack, with the hydration pack out of it for space. I wadded up my necessary dance clothes, shoes, and baby wipes. (thanks Kerrie-I almost forgot wipes!) Of course today is the FIRST day we have had that is hot and sunny. And by hot, I mean we might reach 70. Not hot by most standards, but the warmest it has been here, and I'm not used to it. It will be worth it to get the miles in. I hope.

I'll let you know how it goes! And the Lake of the Woods Race Report will get done as soon as I can manage it. Maybe my kids will take amazing naps today? Maybe?

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Happy National Day of Running!

Happy first day of June, and National Day of Running! However, around here it looks more like March. I came out of the studio today and had to use my scrapper to get half an inch of hail and ice off my windshield. I kid you not. I NEED SUN! Hopefully soon.

The good news is, I have been running! Not a lot, and I'm trying to be good about not going on consecutive days. Mostly. Some days you just need a run! The official Doctors word was, run if it doesn't hurt. Duh Dr. Waste My Money. I have been been (semi)diligently strength training and cross training, as well as running a few here and there.

May Stats: 44 miles Running, 116 miles total counting Elliptical and Swimming.

This weekend is the Lake of the Woods 15k. My original plan was to just not go. Then I was going to go cheer on A. Now I am running a bit, so I thought, I'll just do the 5k. Then I looked at how many weeks I have to build up mileage before Seattle. Crap. Not much. Um, suddenly doing 10 miles is sounding like a good plan after all. Maybe?

It is discouraging how hard running feels, and how out of shape I feel after 5 weeks off. I mean wow. I have discovered that running a little faster makes it easier for me to maintain better form, IE not drop my hips. The bad news, I can't hold that faster pace for very long. It goes to show that cross training is not the same!

My friend A is a bad influence. Okay, mostly I'm just bad at saying I've had enough. We always leave planning around 5 miles, which turns in to 7 or 8. The good news is, I ran 8.5 on Saturday with no pain! Weird thing? 5 miles yesterday caused some discomfort. I think it was the hills, and the fact I was going as fast as possible due to the hail and rain pelting me. Ouch!

So back to Lake of the Woods. My plan. I am going to do the 15k as long as I am pain free on race day. And I'm not going to race it. No seriously, I'm just going to relax and do what I can do. Easy enough, right? At least I'll get the mileage in and get to enjoy a lovely run around a lake (at nearly 6000ft). Uh huh. Totally easy.

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Injury Update

Injuries of any kind are frustrating. The questions are many-Why? How? What now? Am I better yet? The answers are few-?

Some days my leg feels almost normal. Other days, it hurts with no activity at all. Some days I can do the elliptical without any pain, others even lap swimming hurts. WTH?

I went to a sports doctor last week hoping for answers. Just like last year, the x-ray was clear. No stress fracture. That's good news right? Except it doesn't match up with the pain. The doctor took another side view x-ray and noticed that there is a thickening of my shin bone that shows it is under stress. What he doesn't know is WHY. So, I am on a prescription anti-inflammatory daily that may or may not be helping. And, tomorrow I get to have a bone scan.

So tomorrow morning at 8am, I get injected with radioactive dye. Crazy, huh? Then we wait a few hours for it to circulate all through my body, and I go back to get the bone scan. I guess with the dye it should (hopefully) show the contrast of what's going on with my bone. I hope so! Last year after paying for x-rays and an MRI I had NO answers, just waited until i was pain free. Not a great solution if this is going to keep happening. I miss my run.

I got an email with some race photos. Aren't those the best? Wow. Always so flattering. One wasn't half bad-but what I noticed was that one hip seemed to be dropping. Hmmm. I looked back at another race photo, and saw something similar. After last years injury, I shortened my stride some thinking perhaps over striding was the culprit. Mistake? Now I am wondering if these injuries are not overuse, but something with my form that is fixable. Time to do some research I guess...

Monday, May 2, 2011

Just Keep Swimming

I am reminded of my injury time of last year and how much I hated it! Nothing compares to running. It just doesn't. I could handle the elliptical (with the help of Netflix), but it was still just okay. However, at least I got to feel myself sweat and get all jello-legged.

Today was my first trip to swim laps since last years injury. Yeah, pleasant memories there. So it was also my first trip to the pool at the YMCA. I was pleasantly surprised there. It was better than expected, although only 4 lanes wide. Thankfully going to the mid-day lap swim, there were only 3 other ladies there. Two were walking in one lane, the other was doing the side stroke/drifting.

Having not only a lane to myself, but my pick was pretty great. And the water was warm! Not uncomfortably, but it felt great getting in. Worst part of swimming? Getting in and out of the freaking cold pool. All the pools around here are geothermally heated. Cool, huh?

I am horrible at keeping lap counts. Laughably so. I get so distracted! Which is funny because when your swimming, there isn't much to think about. No music, no Netflix. Just swimming. I did two laps of freestyle, two laps freestyle pulls (with the buoy between my knees), and two laps of backstroke pulls. Repeat. Over and over, until the arms feel like jello. Okay, that took just over 40 minutes. 1200 yards, I'll take it since I have done laps in about a year.

Here's one of my beefs with swimming. I get out feeling all exhausted, like I can't lift my arms. What you're supposed to feel like after a workout, right? Awesome. And that lasts for about 10 minutes, and then I feel like I haven't worked out at all. I'm not tired, I'm not sweaty, my muscles don't feel fatigued. (of course, we'll see how my arms feel tomorrow!) Does anyone else experience that? I don't know if I am not going hard/long enough?

Downside? Stupid pool hours. Not open early enough to go then, and the daytime swims conflict with preschool pickups or naps. And what's up with offering Aqua Zumba more often than lap swim?

Thursday, April 28, 2011

The Dark Place

I am in a dark place today. The blowing snow outside my window together with a difficult day with my kids moods is not helping. But the real reason for my dark place? No more denial, I am hurt. Which is a crushing blow. I've been here before, but I cannot handle it again. I cannot handle once again not being able to RACE in Seattle at the end of June.

When I started having twinges in my shin, I eased up. When the twinges turned to pain, I stopped running and hit the eliptical. Yesterday I was doing my thing on the eliptical, on the easiest resistance. I was almost to mile four, and I felt a twinge. I slowed down, eased the hill level down. Just past mile four pain shot through my shin. No no no no, this isn't happening. I wanted to scream. I wanted to cry. I really wanted to throw something. (mature, huh?)

I stopped. I got off the machine, and wiped it down. My leg hurt. Not good at all. I texted my husband for a ride, (he had dropped me off). I went upstairs, and did some upper body, just to feel like I had gotten something from my workout.

I came home defeated. And cried. I don't cry often, and my husband has no idea what to do or say when I do, since it doesn't happen often. I had a pity party on the couch with an ice pack, while my family went to church. (the only bonus-fantastic payoff basketball last night)

I am in a dark place today. I want to eat every piece of candy in the house. I am terrified to eat anything, knowing I can't burn the calories. This is obviously not a healthy place to be, but how do you get out of a dark place?

I made an appointment with a sports doctor for next thursday. I am terrified, but wish it was sooner just for the answers I hope to get.

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Happy Easter!

Happy Easter Everyone!

three very hyper, sugared up kids!

We had a wonderful day with friends, celebrating the best day of the whole year! And as usual, celebrating involved eating way too much. Time to get back on track tomorrow!

Saturday, April 23, 2011

A Distance PR!

But not the kind I am actually happy or proud about! I did 8 miles on the elliptical today. Uh yeah. 8 miles of mind numbing elliptical at the gym. Although honestly, I would have kept going if I didn't need to get home for the Easter Egg hunt with the kids.

It was a perfect mild morning, cloudy and 45 degrees. Great long run weather. Instead of enjoying 11 miles with my friend A, I was at the Y on the dreaded elliptical. My shin has been feeling a little sore off and on, the same shin that had a stress fracture last spring. What is it with spring? It's like a conspiracy!

Wednesday afternoon I went for a very rainy 4 mile run. I was keeping a good pace, but feeling a twinge here and there. That had been happening off and on for a week, so I was running fewer miles and minding my form. The last mile of that 4 miler not only was it hailing, but my leg started to HURT. Oh no. Not good. I eased up and made it home, iced right away, and prayed it was okay.

Thursday I did yoga, did a few miles on the elliptical, and had dance. Okay, I could have rested more than that. Friday, my leg was sore just cleaning house and doing laundry. Ice ice baby.

This morning my leg felt fine, no pain walking. Whew! I would've loved to run, and thought about it briefly. And then I remembered last year when I pushed it until I was hurt for 3 1/2 months. 3 1/2 long grumpy months of NO RUNNING. Resting now is sounding like a much better idea, so I can race in Seattle come June.

So off to the Y I went. It was pretty empty for a Saturday morning, but that meant I got to set the TV to the basketball game. I ended up talking on the phone with my mom, and texting A after her run to keep my mind occupied. I was trying to go for distance, keeping my effort pretty even but not too easy. I changed up the hills, but kept the resistance low.

My leg felt fine afterwards, thankfully. So how long should I take it easy before testing my leg on a run again? The gym is closed tomorrow for Easter, so maybe a quick run on the soft trail?

I am not good at taking it easy. Someone hide my running shoes.

Thursday, April 14, 2011

A Not So Smart Running Moment

A not so smart running moment=a really not fun post race experience

I mentioned how sick I got after the race in my last post. Bummer, but I didn't really focus too much on the why aside from I didn't eat right away. Yesterday I was flipping through an older Runners World, and came across one of the many mentions of what a bad idea it is to take NSAIDS before a race to ward of injuries and soreness.

Of course-we all know that. Duh. Oh wait....

And then I remembered, I went to bed on Friday night with a massive headache. I woke up Saturday morning with a bad headache/almost could be a migraine. Oh no. (This is what my in-laws do to me) So I looked through my medicine cabinet and decided on taking an 800mg Ibuprofen to nip the headache knowing the migraine meds make me dizzy.

800mg!!!! How did this not occur to me sooner? Not a smart decision!!!!! And sure enough, what is one of the side effects with running/racing? It sucks your sodium away. Did I mention I am a salty sweater? Yeah, the light dawned a little late.

There is a reason I earned the nickname Space-Kase.

I feel like an idiot. Well I know what I won't be taking next time for a headache!

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Pear Blossom Race Report

On Saturday was the Pear Blossom Festival in Medford. They have a 1 mile, 5k, and 10 mile race. The race had sold out at 4000. I signed up for the 10 mile, but went in to the actual race with tempered (low) expectations after having to take nearly two weeks off in March. Saturday morning we needed to leave the house around 6am. My in-laws were in town visiting, and decided to come along. Which meant we got on the road about 6:25, (my MIL grumbling about the ungodly hour all the way). We got into Medford, and the directions we had didn't work because of detours for the race. The race started at 8:15, and it was 7:50. I was starting to stress. I still needed to find A at the start line to get my bib. The fam dropped me off two blocks from the start, and I warmed up (aka RAN) to the start line to find A. They ended up starting a little late, so it worked out okay. Whew. The start coral was CROWDED! It's been a while since I've done a big race like that. The 5k and 1 mile had started half an hour earlier, so it was just the 10 milers and it was still huge. A lined up right near the front since she's speedy, I put myself around the middle. They started counting down, and the muskets were supposed to fire after the countdown. Someone accidentally fired on 3, and we were off. Mile 1: People watching is so great at bigger races. I saw Fred Flinstone and Barney Rubble, a guy in a green tutu, and two girls in fairy wings. Mile 2: Still relaxed but dodging people, playing name that brand on runners clothes. Amazingly fun. (my husband thinks this means I have been shopping online too much) Mile 3: We start heading out of town, I am happily holding under a 10 min pace and feeling comfortable. Mile 4: Why am I such a retard trying to drink while running? All they had was water, and my shot blok is stuck in my teeth. The only big hill on this course is between 4-5. It isn't long, but a steep uphill and downhill. I ROCKED that hill. I passed everyone near me. Okay, running all the hills around here is paying off. Mile 5: Lots of people at the turnaround, still feeling really good. Tackle the hill again-same thing. Seeing lots of people starting to walk. Mile 6: Still feeling comfortable, keeping my eye on the green tutu guy. Mile 7: walked through the water stop to make sure it got in my mouth! Mile 8: I feel a twinge in my shin and back off pace a little. Am I hurt? Where is the pain? I walk a water stop, start running again and feel okay. Mile 9: I realize my pace is coasting but I still feel good! I pick it back up. Mile 10: I start picking people off, and pushing the pace. Last mile, 8:55. I try to catch green tutu guy, but miss him by about 30 feet. I did pass 7 women the last mile. 10.1 miles 1:37 9:41 pace I finished feeling great, like I could have run a full half at that pace. Dang, I think I left way too much in the tank. I was being so conservative with my pace not wanting to bonk, I took it too easy!
The only picture my husband got of me from the race. He missed the finish, expecting me about 1:45. So the only picture I have my eyes are closed!

After the race, there was a parade. I changed in the car, and we went to the parade route. All they had for food was bananas, so I ate one but wasn't feeling all that hungry. We went to the coffee shop to get something, but nothing looked good. I wanted salty, not sweet. Shortly after, I got sick to my stomach. Way sick. I've been sick after races before, but this time was the worst! So I spent the parade in the bathroom, and later when we went shopping at Costco, I handed over the list and spent my time dry heaving in the restroom. (TMI I know) I couldn't hold down liquid and knew I needed some calories. It was horrible. I finally kept down some gatorade, and made myself sleep in the car hoping I could make it home without being sick. We made it home, and I started munching, (even though I didn't feel like it) and replacing fluids. By dinnertime, I felt okay. Not great, but okay and able to eat.

Sunday morning I woke up feeling great. Still a little dehydrated, but not at all sore. I am always disappointed when I am not sore after a race-it means I didn't push to the limit. We went out for an easy few miles to loosen up, which turned into 5 gorgeous miles of recovery.

Monday, March 28, 2011

Is it spring YET?

I am done with snow. D O N E. It is almost April, and we have snow on the ground. Wrong I tell you. As bad as the weather has been, it did make not being able to run for 10 days slightly easier. Very slightly. Okay, it still drove me crazy. I had my wisdom teeth removed almost two weeks ago, and it was BRUTAL. Way worse than I expected. I was thinking 3-4 days off, and I'd be back. Yeah, not so much. To add to the fun, the day after my surgery, my dad called to let me know my Grandma had passed away. And I was still hopped up on pain meds. So, my husband got to drive us all the way to Washington, (me drooling all the while). Like most runners, without running I find it very difficult to process lifes various challenges. I felt rather numb, and couldn't place why. Running is such a huge part of my "me" time that it is when I do all my thinking, processing, venting, etc. You get the picture. 10 days was a long time to go without my therapy of choice. Saturday's run with A was discouraging. I felt out of shape, out of breath, and slow. 5 miles had never felt so hard-at least not in recent memory. My mouth still throbbed, which was equally frustrating. The good news, we stopped to shop afterwards and I found a really cute dress for $10. Sunday, we had planned to run together without a real distance in mind. If I needed a walk break doing 5, I wasn't sure how it would go. Thankfully, I was feeling much better and had remembered to take some advil in advance. We thought six, then seven. As our turn options became fewer, it was looking like around 8. I was feeling pretty good, just tired. We got almost back to my house, realizing we would be at around 8.5. A expressed her frustrating that Dailymile rounds up-so we went around the block. And finished at 9.4, kind of defeating the purpose-but my legs were DONE. Added to that, it had been snowing HARD the whole time. We were soaked. The flakes were pretty the first couple of miles; after that, not so much. Later that evening A texted me saying she had to finish to make it an even 10. I couldn't argue with that, and after a rest, what's another .6? So I asked my son if he wanted to come with me. He was so cute, and wanted to sprint and walk. We are still working on pacing. He and I ran .75. He was so proud of himself. I am hoping as the weather improves, the kids can come with me more for short runs. Like my cooldown. This morning was my first solo run since my break. I woke up at 4:30am (ugh) and looked out the window to 2 inches of new snow. Not so bad. I got dressed and headed out the door. The snow was crunchy with ice underneath. If I had known that, I would have found my yaktraxs. It was still snowing, and slick. I needed this run though. To think. To grieve. To zone out-running in the snow by light of a headlamp is funny that way. I came home with tired legs, a cold body, but a peaceful heart.

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Run for the Music 10k

Saturday was the Run for the Music race. I was so excited to have a race to look forward to, even knowing I was not in shape for a fast time. Speed work needs to be added to my schedule in a hurry! The course is hilly, but I'd run a lot of it before so I knew what to expect.

Rewind slightly-went to the dentist last week for tooth pain. I have a wisdom tooth with a hole in it that is mega painful, and needs to come out. (scheduled this Tuesday for all four-ouch!)

Friday night my tooth hurt, and I wasn't feeling the best. Then the cramps started. Oh no, really? It couldn't have waited one more day? Sometimes they aren't so bad, other times they are debilitating. Guess which kind I was blessed with? Ugh!!! So I spent Friday night taking various drugs every two hours and keeping heat on my stomach. I did not sleep.

Saturday morning I got a text from A-"Excited to race?" Um, yes and no. I love to race! But everything in me wanted to bail. I had not signed up for this race ahead of time. I should just stay home. I got up, did my breakfast (with Advil) and figured I'd hope for the best. I would be happy with anything under an hour.

The race was put on by one of the high school bands, with a 1 mile, 5k, and 10k. The band members all ran with their instruments. Pretty hilarious to see the guy running with a tuba. Much easier on the flutist. People turned off for the 1 mile.

I was holding a comfortable 9:30ish pace, not wanting to go out too fast. It is uphill the first 2 miles, so I just wanted to maintain a good pace. There was a water stop at the turn around for the 5k. I would rather just be thirsty in a shorter race then stop. Most of the runners around me turned at the 5k, I kept my sights on a few in front of me.

Mile 2.5 is a BIG uphill into the park. I've run this park with A and it is HILLY. I got passed for the first time on this hill, but passed her before the top. I saw A on her way back already and cheered her on-speedy girl! (she finished first female 45:41)

The turnaround meant a great downhill stretch. I am realizing I am not a great downhill runner. Easier yes, but my stride isn't smooth. Hm. Something to work on. Heading back on the road I set my sights on 4 ladies ahead of me and started picking up the pace. The last slow uphill I started really feeling blah.

I started picking off the women ahead of me, passing all 4 with about half a mile to go. I was so glad to see the turn for the finish. What I didn't realize was, it wasn't the finish yet. I started my kick too soon. We had to run around the outside of the school and around to the track. I just wanted to be done! I could feel myself slowing down a little until we got on the track. I kicked with what I had left, swerving around walkers in the finish shoot.

Finish Time 55.37

My splits were not at all even, but hills and not feeling well, and whatever. I was thrilled to finish under a 9:00 average. Nothing close to the 50:00 I used to be able to run, but for now, I'll take it!

Today we were under a wind advisory with 60mph gusts, so no running. I woke sore from the race, which made me really happy. Sometimes when I'm not sore I worry I didn't work hard enough. I was sorry to not get a recovery run today, but the weather did not cooperate, and the gym was closed.

Plan for tomorrow: get up and run really early, if the wind has died down. Otherwise the gym during preschool. Surgery Tuesday, so not sure when I can run after that!

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Thursday brought to you by the letter R

This morning I got up at 4:30 to run before my hubby went to work, hoping for less wind. No such luck. Then it started to rain-hard. Ouch! Needless to say, my last mile was the fastest. I am excited about it getting lighter in the mornings, but if I am going at 4:30 I think it will be quite a while before I can go without my headlamp. Still trying to decide if early morning works better, or trying to squeeze it into busy afternoons.

There is a 10k on Saturday I am really looking foward to. I am not in 10k race condition, so I don't expect it to be fast at all. I have not worked on speed in a long time aside from throwing a few tempo(ish) miles in here and there. The course is a steep uphill, and a continuous uphill to the turnaround. The good news? Downhill to the finish! So, I am planning to keep the effort even on the uphills ad hopefully have some fantastic negative splits on the way down. Preferably without a sideache.

Because of my cold, I haven't run a lot this week. I keep feeling the need to add miles to make up for the lack on Sunday and Monday. Is it better to rest the day before a short race, or run a few miles with pickups to get the legs moving? Again, I'm not going for a PR here-just a decent effort.

1. Why is it so hard for drivers to LOOK right before they TURN right.
2. I need to have my wisdom teeth removed ASAP. I am trying to plan this around my running/racing-easier said then done.
3. PMS-speaks for itself.

I hope everyone is having a good Thursday! The end (of the week) is near!

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

The sniffles and a Massage

Saturday A and I ran 11 difficult miles on Saturday, in the rain. I felt lousy for most of the run. I had fueled badly for the run, and worse-for the whole week. I munched all week long and didn't eat real meals, and very little protein. It was one of those weeks when time just gets away from you and it's hard to fit it all in.

I shouldn't have been surprised to have a sore throat on Sunday, and a stuffy nose by Sunday night. I rested Sunday and enjoyed a pajama day after church. Monday I woke feeling lousy. I started on Zicam Monday morning, and spent the day sleeping on the couch. Two rest days in a row felt weird-but I know it was the best thing since I wasn't feeling great. I even skipped ballet Monday night (my hubby made me).

Tuesday I was still drinking lots, and taking Zicam. It seemed to be doing the trick, I was over the worst! I had a massage Tuesday afternoon that was horribly painful, (it was to treat chronic headache/migraine issues). She also told me my hip was out. After pushing and pulling and OW! It felt awesome!

So, that decided it for me-a short run was in order. I called A, and although she had already run, she was game for a few more miles. We did an easy 3.5. I felt tired, but my gait felt so much better than on Saturday. Who knew? The massage therapist said my left leg was probably almost an inch shorter then my right because of my hip. Huh. I'm hoping this can justify more (hopefully less painful) massages.

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Seattle RNR!

I am registered for the Seattle Rock 'n Roll Half Marathon! Wohoo! I was hoping to be able to run this race again this year. I had such a blast running it last year with Zoe and her friend, and doing the bloggy dinner. Last year I was just coming back from my stress fracture, as in I hadn't run farther than 3 miles in 3 months leading up to the race. Not the ideal way to run a half!

So this year, I will hopefully be getting to the start line injury free, and be able to actually RUN and RACE the whole thing. Not to mention, since I am now training at altitude, I am hoping to get a solid sub 2 hour time.

My spring race plans are starting to come together I think, now I just need to work out an official training plan to go with it. It's been nice having the winter to just run and not worry about mileage, time or speedwork. Now I am feeling very ready to train hard and work towards improving my times at every distance.

Upcoming races:
March 12th Run for the Music 10k
April 9th Pear Blossom 10 miler
May 14th Run for the Birds 10k
June 4th Lake of the Woods 15k
June 25th Seattle Rock 'n Roll

Time to work out a training plan that will make me faster without hurting myself! Always a good goal.

Today is a rest day after yestedays 11 miles. I wanted to get in a few miles today, but have a sore throat. Here's hoping I just need one day off to rest!

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Thursday Thoughts

My brain is tired, and stuff is rumbling around in a very random fashion. I figured this is a good place to spew and make room.

1. I had a terrible migraine yesterday. Sometimes running helps, sometimes not. I tried to run. Epic fail! Almost crawled home after less than a mile. Not awesome.

2. It is staying light later! Which means I ran run some evenings with A. So great. She is speedy, and I need to work harder to be faster.

something tells me the didn't go right to bed

3. I really dislike doctors and dentists. They are necessary, but freak me out. So, I have been procrastinating finding a new doctor and dentist since we moved. Bad!

4. I am feeling burnt out on my DVDs and crosstraining. I need some new ideas!
5. When I do a workout DVD my 5 year old does it too, and tells me it's too easy. Add more! Sometimes I am annoyed, most often amused.

6. Cleaning house should count as crosstraining. Especially all the picking up, over and over and over. It's like core work, right?

7. My eating habits have been weird, and not in a good way. Munching and not eating real meals. I'm not sure why. I need to keep a food diary again.

8. Fitness magazine seems much more about looking pretty during/after exercise then actually excerising. But sometimes they have good workouts.

9. I am dreaming of being somewhere warm with no snow or wind!

10. I have been having runner's tummy troubles after long runs again. Not sure what to do about that. Any ideas? I have tried doing watered down gatorade instead of water as fuel, and eating something salty when I get home. I don't know.
I am still working on finding my living room floor. It's hard to do core work if there isn't enough space to lay down! Happy Thursday!

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Saturday's 10 miler

Winter weather has made a comeback around here, unfortunately. I had to get friendly with the YMCA treadmills again. Saturday's forecast was for cold. I had not gotten to run with my buddy A for almost 3 weeks because of traveling, (first her, then me). We were going to run together, not matter how cold! And because of the cold, we didn't really know how long we would run.

I got up Saturday morning and checked the temp first thing. It was -8. Yuck! The plan was to wait until around noon, hoping it would warm up. My husband got a good laugh out of how many times I checked the hourly weather, texting A all the while. Finally we decided on 1pm, hoping for the most sun. It had (thankfully) warmed up to 18 degrees. Not warm by any means, but better than -8!

We bundled up, and headed for the trail still deciding how far we would venture. We decided to run downtown, thinking it was about 4 miles. If we were cold when we got there, we could get a coffee before heading back.

It was actually 4.87 miles to the coffee shop, and by then we were reasonably warm. The thought of having a latte in my stomach for the 5 miles home did not appeal. A agreed with me, so we went into the store next door. I still haven't explored much of downtown, so the store was new to me. They had some cute stuff! So there we are, in our running clothes, the icicles melting off our eyelashes, shopping. The first thing I pulled that I liked was an $80 skirt! Oops, not my price range! A found a cute basket on clearance, and I found another skirt on clearance I wanted to try on. We asked the owner to hold them until we ran home and came back. She laughed and said she'd be there.

The run home was colder than ever, the downside of stopping! The wind had picked up a bit and made the last mile seem to take forever! We got to my house, I ran in to change and off we went. Coffee and shopping after 10 miles! A great way to spend a Saturday in my book. My husband said he's not so sure about us running downtown if we're going to shop while we're at it!

Saturday, February 26, 2011

ABC's of Me

A) Age: 29 (for another few months, the big 3-0 in May!)
B) Bed Size: Queen
C) Chore I hate: Anything in the kitchen. Dishes especially.
D) Dogs: No, sometimes I think I want one-but too much work
E) Essential Start Your Day Item: Coffee! and food immediately after, I wake up starving
F) Favorite Color: Blue and Purple. It really depends on my mood
G) Gold or Silver: White Gold or Platinum. Yellow gold looks terrible on my skin.
H) Height: 5'10"
I) Instruments you play: Piano, clarinet, violin, trumpet. I wanted to be a music major once upon a time
J) Job title: Mom, Wife, Dance Teacher
K) Kids: 3 ages 7, 5, 3 1/2 (boy, girl, girl) Never a dull moment in this house!
L) Live: Klamath Falls, Oregon
M) Mom's Name: Jeri Lee
N) Nicknames: Kase, Space-Kase, Spacey-Kasey (seeing a theme here?), and of course MOM!
O) Overnight Hospital Stays: a night or two for each kid, 2 weeks in ICU after baby #3 with major complications. Not fun!
P) Pet Peeve: People who drive 5 under the speed limit, and general stupidity
Q) Quote from a Movie: ooh, tough pick. We talk in movie quotes around here. "I'm getting the pig!!!" (from the movie Red-highly recommend if you like action movies)
R) Right or Left Handed: Right mostly. I can use either for most things
S) Siblings: Older sister, older brother, two younger half-siblings
T) Time you wake up: right now, around 7am.
U) Underwear: Hipsters
V) Vegetable you Dislike: Mushrooms, Lima Beans
W) What makes you run late: My kids, and my husband. I hate being late! The rest of my family has no sense of urgency
X) X-rays You've had: shin, knees, ankle, elbow, wrist, head and spine-okay what haven't I?
Y) Yummy food you make: I am an awesome baker-cakes, cookies, you name it. Real food cooking, I make a great homemade mac and cheese.
Z) Zoo Favorite Animal: Big cats are my favorites, Leopards, Lions, etc

There you have it!