Thursday, November 30, 2017

Three Days Till CIM!

Well, this is it. Three days before the big day. I'm definitely starting to get a little nervous, then I push aside the feeling for a while, then it comes back again. I know it's normal to feel nervous about race day - after all the time, energy and commitment I've put into this training cycle. I think it would feel weird to cruise along without my heart beating a little faster. This race means a lot to me and I'm excited to see what I can do on Sunday.

I've been getting a good amount of sleep - the beginning of the week was hard and I was worried a lot about Josh (you can read about it HERE), but he is recovering so well and I think the hard part is truly behind us. Tuesday night's sleep was so solid (9.5 hours!), Wednesday was just under 8 hours and I'm determined to get a great night of sleep tonight as we are traveling tomorrow to Sacramento. It's going to be an earlier morning than usual and I don't want to feel that I'm lacking on sleep. I have found that when I get solid sleep and fit in a nap (if possible) before a big race or workout, I feel so much more confident and happy. On the other hand, it's really hard to let everything go in the evening and jump into bed... right? Moms reading this - you know what I mean. When the kids are in bed, it's my time to get so much done and yet I know I have to let it go after a certain time.

Thanksgiving food coma snuggle with one lovebug

The weather looks like it's going to awesome on Sunday. I was worried about rain 10 days out, but that has since gone away and looks like low 40's to high 50's, which is perfect weather! 

Here's what my training has looked like lately leading up to the race (48 miles last week and will be 23 miles this week before 26.2 on Sunday!):

Monday November 20th - REST DAY

Tuesday November 21st - Josh's big surgery. 6 miles from the hospital with my phone strapped to me, ringer on high in case Jerold should call. I had to make myself slow down... so glad I had my watch, cause I would think about him and then pace would go up.

Wednesday November 22nd - 10 total miles = 1 mile warm up, 8 mile progression from 7:11 - 6:39, 1 mile cool down

Thursday November 23rd - Happy Thanksgiving! 6 easy miles. I decided not to run our local turkey trot which I love. I knew I wouldn't be able to resist racing it and I wanted to follow the plan with easy miles today. We had such a wonderful day full of family, food and fun. So much to be thankful for.

Friday November 24th - 8 easy miles with 8 x :20 second pick ups. Oops, I was only supposed to do 6 pick ups... I read it wrong.

Saturday November 25th - 6 easy miles

Sunday November 26th - 12 miles at 7:40. I was happy to get this done. I pulled back on the pace and wanted to do a happy dance when I finished.

Monday November 27th - REST

Tuesday November 28th - 7 miles. 4 miles easy and then three miles at 7:03 pace. Last speed workout!

Wednesday November 29th - 5 easy miles

Thursday November 30th - 4 easy miles

Coach has sent the plan to me, I know what I have to do, what I want to do. I know that I willl pour everything I have into Sunday morning. I feel so lucky that I get to run in our state's capitol. That I'm healthly, strong and fearless. It really is a privilege to run and I'm embracing that fully. 

What I'm doing to prepare this week:

1. Sleep
2. Easy running and then stretching every day. I stopped strength work 10 days prior to race and stopped core work 4 days out (yesterday).
3. Hydration (water and Nuun, since Nuun will be on the course)
4. Starting today, I'm slowly adding in a bit more carbs - an extra piece of bread, a big bun on our homemade turkey burgers tonight, sweet potatoes, bananas.
5. Asking for more help and trying to put my feet up when I can. It's not easy with three kids, but Jerold made dinner tonight (yay!), he's been helping more with lunches and clean up this week. I'll have him drive the kids to school tomorrow...
6. Remember the many miles I have put in when I start to get nervous. I know I'm prepared to stand on the starting line.

Alright, off to check and make sure I have everything for the trip and then jump into bed. 

Oh, I almost forgot - Total miles for November = 249.46

Do awesome things.


Monday, November 20, 2017

Less Than Two Weeks Till CIM!

The simple fact is that I've run 34.2 miles over the weekend (Friday, Saturday and Sunday) and I'm not tired...I'm pumped up and excited. I know it won't last and I'll soon come crashing down off the runner's high, but for now - let's dance...

Celebrating a great training cycle!

The kids are off from school for nearly ten days over Thanksgiving break - a first! Usually they would have school Monday and Tuesday of Thanksgiving week, but I think everyone realized that so many people travel and take the days anyway, so why not make it official?
The beauty of this is that it falls during the beginning of the marathon taper - so guess whhhhat? I don't have to get up at crack of dawn to do the school grind. This is like a dream come true...
I need as much rest as I can get to let my body absorb all of this intense training. It feels a little like taking vitamins - you keep taking them every day and then one day... boom - you can really feel the difference. I'm betting on the fact that since all the intense hard work is practically finished I'll be prepped to perfom just right on race day.

Foam roll

This week's total mileage was 59.81 - down a bit from last week's 70.65.
Here's a detailed look at the weekend:

Friday November 17th - 10 miles

Saturday November 18th  - 7 trail miles

Sunday November 19th - 17 miles:
10 miles at 7:40 and 7 miles at 6:57

If you want to check out the rest of the week, you can read about it HERE.

I didn't talk about this too much on the last post, but strength training has definitely been firmly cemented into my training. A glimpse (I know I'm forgetting something...):

Donkey Kicks
Push ups
Bicycle crunches
Single Dead Lifts
Russian Twists with a 10 pound medicine ball
Lat pull downs
Dynamic planks
Single leg bridges
Running in place with 10 or 15 pound weights
Bear crawls
Kettle bell carries
Rowing push up with weights (15 pound)

Definitely a highlight of the week was going to Elle's preschool Thanksgiving celebration. She decorated her own placemat as well as a pumpkin. On the pumpkin she had to name three things she was thankful for. She chose: God, the ocean and love. Isn't that incredible? She amazes me every day...

I'm in the midst of Thanksgiving planning and we are going to have so much fun! 

What is your favorite Thanksgiving dish?

Do you stay home or travel to family?

Do awesome things.


Friday, November 17, 2017

A Glimpse Into A 70 Mile Week, 16 days Till CIM + It's Not Time To Taper Yet...

I know exactly how I got here and yet I find myself thinking: "How did I get here, who is this girl?" 
It's safe to say that I have entered unchartered territory in the private universe of marathon training. During this cycle I'm stretched myself more than I ever have, challenged my mind and body and pushed myself into a whole new realm of running. I've waited for a long time for this phase to happen and it's totally exhilarating.

I really think you have to trust the process and trust your coach to enter into this phase. This week, specifically yesterday, was the first time ever that I thought: "I don't know how much more I can do." The exhaustion was at the brink, the kids have had every project under the freakin sun due THIS WEEK (book reports! English quizzes! States and Capitals - we're now up to 42! Thanksgiving feasts! read to my daughter's class! parents teacher conferences!... PLEASE STOP already.). This along with the absolute peak of training had me feeling like I needed someone to loan me a turbo engine to get though it all. 

I need a haircut, mani pedi, massage, more sleep and whatever luxurious form of self care you can think of - I need it, want it, need it. I live in a running hat, some form of running clothes and the most comfortable shoe I can find at all times. It's so not glamarous or exciting, but I love it. I love nailing a workout, feeling on top of the world when the training absorbs into my body and I hit paces like I've never hit before. I look in the mirror (cringing at my unkept eyebrows and yet who has time to get to an appointment?) and think: "Yes. It's worth it."

Heck yes, it's worth it. Cause when I cross that line, there will be such a huge sense of pride and accomplishment - knowing that I did everything I possibly could to make myself ready for the moment. Crap, I know I'm going to be nervous... until the gun goes off and I will then run like I've never run before. It will hurt, I know I will experience pain at some point, but I know that I am prepped to take it to the edge. I will dig so far, so deep into my inner bad ass and she will come out, kicking and screaming, ready to fight for every step.

Hey you. Yes, I'm talking to you reading this. Just know that if you really want something you have to do more than commit - you have to become that goal. Close your eyes and visualize the victory - your own personal joy. Then go back and work for it -  work harder than you ever have and when you think you've worked hard enough - work more (safely of course, be smart, listen to your body and never to the point of physical pain or injury.). 

Want to know what a 70 mile week looks like at this point in my training?

Monday November 6th - REST DAY ( 18 miles on Sunday 11/5 - 67 total miles the previous week)

Tuesday November 7th - 8.7 miles

She's almost too big for it - the days are numbered... but we had so much fun!

Wednesday November 8th- 12.75 miles. A hard workout broken up like this:
1.5 mile warm up, 3 x 3 mile repeats (times for these were: 20:14, 20:15, 20:11), 3 minute jog in between, 1.5 mile cool down.

Thursday November 9th - 8 easy miles

Friday November 10th - 10 miles with 10 x :30 second pick ups at 5:50/6:00 pace

Saturday November 11th - 8.2 easy miles

Sunday November 12th - 23 miles (7:39 pace). GU and Nuun on hand (practicing with Nuun as that will be on the race course). Pumped to have Jerold there for support - our one and only long run together.

Sunday long run to the max.

Total Miles: 70.65

Then everyone was like: "Yay! You are tapering now!"

Um, yeah... NO. Not yet...

Monday November 13th: REST DAY

Tuesday November 14th - 7 easy miles

Wednesday November 15th - 2 mile w/up, 6 x 1 mile repeats at fast (for me) paces and faster than the same workout last month.
6:16, 6:15, 6:15, 6:17, 6:15, 6:15 (with .25 jog in between), 2 mile cool down.
11.5 miles

Thursday November 16th - 7 easy miles. 

Friday November 17th - 10 miles

And now onward to the weekend.

Want to know what I'm doing to stay injury free, sane and ready for the next workout?

1. Core every night including pushups EVERY day. Most of the time I will break them up - some during the day, the rest at night. Usually 6 sets of 15
2. Hydrate, hydrate, hydrate = pee, pee, pee
3. Epsom salt bath every single night
4. Roll muscles every day
5. Yoga every day (pigeon, legs up the wall, downward dog, happy baby)
7. All the PT exercises (I'll have to do a post on this)
8. Dynamic stretching before every run and heel raises/stretch the calf 
9. Roll and massage my feet every day
10. Sleep in compression socks.
11. Eat like a champ. (Carbs, protein, organic, fruits, veggies, potatoes... nothing processed - cook my own food.)
12. Run easy on easy days
13. Treat the hard work outs like it's your job - give it your all.
14. SLEEP 

In this season of giving thanks, I have so much to be grateful for. I'm learning so much about how far you can soar, how strong you really are and BELIEVE isn't just a word - it's a lifestyle.

Do awesome things.