Sunday, February 24, 2008

Fresh air once more

It was soooo nice to finally get outside again today. In my haste, I had to go twice. The first time I was drawn by the allure of fresh air and blue skies and a thermometer that read 30 degrees. The first corner I turned made me think, uh oh... it's a little windy out here. Then I turned another corner and thought... hmmm more than a little windy. I've got to go back and get a different jacket. So back I went. Then I swear, the sun came out, the wind stopped and I was sweating. But then I turned another corner, oh yes, there's the wind again. Put the gloves back on, put the earmuffs back on. Do you know how hard it is to put sweaty gloves on frozen hands while running and carrying a water bottle?

So ice and snow on the sidewalks, mud and potholes on the roads, dirt in my shoes and my knees and feet pounding from pounding the pavement... How I missed the outdoors! So good to be back.

And dare I say it here... where others can read it? I am considering triathlon. For me this means, taking a swim lesson or two (or hundred!) to overcome my fear of the pool; buying the first bike I've ever owned - since I was a skinny twelve year old with pigtails; and learning terms like big ring and 200 on the 2:05 - or whatever it really is! :) But these things will wait. They will sit and simmer in the back of my mind until after the marathon in Newport, May 31. I want 4 hours! I want 4 hours! I will NOT be denied!!

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Disappointment on the treadmill

I ate well. I slept well. I did all the positive self-talk before and during... and yet, my legs, my mind, my lungs.... I couldn't get it together on the treadmill today. I couldn't get my legs to keep race pace for four whole miles. Will I ever get there? I have to do this for 26.2 miles and I can't do it for even 3 without stopping to walk. How will I ever get there????

But the beauty of having a coach is... you tell her you've failed, you tell her how you failed... and she says. Don't worry about it. Pacing on the treadmill is HARD! It's hard physically. It's hard mentally. It's just plain hard.

And I say to myself...But think of all the work you've done already.... Remember how fast you went in that 5K? Remember how you thought you'd die, but you didn't? Remember how wonderful you felt after that accomplishment? Remember that sometimes, things just don't work. Toughen up. Get over it. Do it tomorrow. Do it better. Put it behind you and move forward. We can only move forward because as I know better than most... there is NO GOING BACK!

Sunday, February 17, 2008

Come on SPRING!

I wanted to run outside today... anything to get me out of the basement, staring at the walls or watching some dumb tv program, a change of scenary please! But mother nature had other plans... I walked out the front door to take the dog for his morning walk and we both just about ended up on our behinds! It was 30 degrees and raining, but the worst of it was there was a SHEET of ICE on everything - roads, sidewalks, cars, mailboxes... Not cool.

So we took a short walk the back way, staying on the only surface that was safe - the snow. Did I mention my dog is on restrictions at the moment and supposed to be taking it easy to rest his ACL? This is a border collie who is used to getting 2 walks of 1-2 (or more) miles in duration every day for his entire 8 years! He is NOT happy with mom. He was very excited this morning to be going in the snow - and couldn't figure out what that boat anchor was tied to his neck. Mom, will you hurry up here? I've got places to go, things to sniff and pee on. Hurry up! Hurry up! HURRY UP! I struggled holding him back so he wouldn't hurt himself. We only went a short way,in which time he DID not do all of his business (poor guy!), and my socks fell down around my toes! Note to self, this sock and boot combo = bad idea! After five minutes, I was ready to rip my boots and socks off and go barefoot in the ice. Flashbacks of childhood!

So I was in a particularly pleasant mood by the time I trudged down stairs to the basement to run for an hour and 40 minutes! Ugh... please let spring come soon - or just let the roads be dry enough to run on without fear of bodily harm - or slush in the face. I made it through the run, but it wasn't pretty and I have to say the whole experience completely negated the great mood and motivation from yesterdays second viewing of the Kona Ironman.

I know some of you will think me nuts and others will completely get it... but I just want to do that. I want to be there. I want to live that experience. Now if only I had a bike ... or a pool...

Friday, February 15, 2008


How do I get over food? I've been struggling the last few days. I truly have a relationship with food and it's not a good one. I'm great all day until about 3pm... then it's something sweet, something not on the list or some huge portion of something "on the list"... then it's like I can't stop eating until I feel like a bloated pig. WHAT is my problem? Why can't I stop myself before I feel so disgusting? Why can't I just eat one? One serving of chocolate or potato chips or whatever? Why do I have to eat until either it's all gone or I can't breathe with my pants on? I want to eat food as fuel - not as comfort or love or companionship or whatever my mind is saying.... I want to eat those things that are good for me, that increase my ability to train, to get faster, be stronger, go longer and farther... so WHY can't I stop???

Sunday, February 10, 2008


Ok, I've been looking forward to running my long run outside all week. And today it was so cold that even my tough little border collie raised a paw in protest. Mom, it's too cold to pee outside. Mom, my feet hurt. Mom, can we go back inside please. And if he can't stay outside for more than 5 minutes, I know it's too cold for me to be out there for 90. For the record, zero degrees with a windchill of -20. Dang!

So I succumbed to the treadmill. 90 minutes looking at a wall. If that's not dedication, I don't know what is! It wasn't a bad run except for that wall. I listened to my ipod for about an hour, but then I had to rip it off my arm. It was driving me crazy - the singing, the hotness in my ears from those stupid little earbuds, the sweaty spot on my arm from that leather strap... just get it off me!

I ran 30 minutes in zone 1 (SLOW), then 30 minutes in zone 2 (comfortable), then 20 minutes supposed to be in low zone 3 at 9:15 pace... hmmm... take your pick, you get 9:15 pace or low zone 3, but you don't get both for long... at least not yet. I picked the heartrate this time, but only because I just spent all that money on a cool heartrate monitor. I figured I better get some use out of the thing!

Friday, February 8, 2008

Defeated or inspired?

I'm still trying to decide which. Last night at the gym while I was doing what seemed like a pretty simple Bosu ball routine (I say seemed because I was very sore this morning!), I watched a 10 year old girl do chin ups. She did at least 3 before her dad had to help. They weren't perfect form, but I have to say I wasn't even trying not to stare because it is such an unusual site. Most grown women and many men can't do chin ups/pull ups. Yet here was this 10 year old girl excited to do them. Eager. I can't do one without assistance, and maybe only a dozen with.... geez! I felt like a slacker... and then she moved on to the seated row machine. She was pulling 50 pounds. I don't think this girl weighed more than 80! Holy cow! I thought I really need to step things up.

Then I had to remind myself, those aren't my goals. My goals are towards running faster and farther and my coach is helping me achieve those. I have to admit though, I'm going to start adding pull ups to my routine again. I guess I was inspired after all.

Sunday, February 3, 2008


I did it! I ran faster than I've ever run before in a 5K. I ran faster for the last mile than the second which was faster than the first. I didn't stop and walk - and I REALLY wanted to. I didn't fall down - and I thought I was going to. I just ran. I kept thinking.... that I had to be able to tell my coach that I did what she said. I couldn't possibly tell her that I had slowed down. So as painful as it was, I did it.

And now I want to do it again. Now I want to run like the wind.

40 mph slush

I know I've said it before, but I just can't let this one go by....Had a great run yesterday except ... about 5 minutes into my run, I got slushed! I don't mean a little around the feet and ankles. I mean head to toe, 40 mph slush. Have you ever had slush thrown in your face at 40 mph? It's not pretty! It really hurts.

Alas, what's a girl to do? After swearing like a sailor for a minute, I had to laugh. I imagine if you'd seen it, you'd think it was pretty darn funny.... now if I ever catch up to that guy....

Friday, February 1, 2008

Rest day in rest week

Sounds relaxing, doesn't it? I hardly know what to do with myself. This is rest week - only 4:30 hours of training this week, well really only 4 - because I told the coach that on my first run this week I thought I'd lost my legs. She cut out my strength training for the week and made me do abs and yoga. That's okay. I guess I needed to relax, but after running such good runs, I feel like such a slacker.

Well, I sort of made up for that yesterday. No slacker here! It was 10 degrees outside, but the roads were clear so I took off for a short and fast run. I ran strides, pick up the pace, steady pace, pick up the pace, steady pace.... but I couldn't feel my fingers, my neck was FROZEN, and my toes - yes, those smart wool socks were working. Thank the lord! By the time I got back, only 35 minutes later, I was actually sweating. Quel surprise! It was again, only 10 degrees outside! BRRR....

So today, in celebration of rest day in rest week, it snowed. A lot! So I shoveled - twice! It's only noon and I've already shoveled twice. But it looks like it's stopped snowing and I'm ready to go out into the world and get a yummy sugary cup of coffee. Cause I earned it!

Stay warm!