Tuesday, December 18, 2007


As in Huge Tool to wine and blog. Never again!

Back to reality, I haven't been running much or working out much. I can feel the difference....everywhere, mentally physically emotionally. Of course it doesn't help that I haven't seen sunlight in 2 months. No, I'm not locked in a trunk, I live in friggin Seattle. I'm in Boston now for the holidays and it is sunny! However, it is also 15* with a slick layer of ice over everything. I'm looking to the new year to bring all of those hopes and dreams of becoming and better person. I am actually really excited for the year to come, I think it will be a good one.

Happy Holidays!

Sunday, October 28, 2007

Recess Over

Hiyeee....its me again. I can't believe I've built up my training regimen for so long only to collapse on the actual race report. I actually did write one up, but it is not put together yet, just partial and some hand written. At least I captured my thoughts right after the race happened, but when I put it together I will of course have hindsight even more featured. I promise I will write it soon.

As for running since the race, I really haven't! It has been three weeks today and I have only run once. After I got back from Chicago I had to quickly turn around to Florida where the weather was...90* and 90% humidity, just like the marathon weather in Chitown. I managed to squeak out 3-4 miles, but it still felt awful and I was sick, so it wasn't too enjoyable. Since then I've been really taking it easy. Enjoying my "recovery" period, or whatever. Yesterday I went on a steep hike which after-effects made me realize I need to get my ass out there again. The hike itself wasn't bad, but I am sore today. Once my dill/cheese scone gets digested I think I'm going to treat myself to a traditional Sunday run. I actually am starting to miss the ritual of getting my music and podcast set up and planning out my run. The trail misses me!

I have also decided to ride my bike more, whenever possible. I biked to class last Thursday since there was no chance of rain and it was great. I love that flushy face feeling with the cold weather but high core body temperature. I walk into where ever my destination is, pant leg rolled up, hair messy, panting but feeling really alive and refreshed. I will definitely make this a habit. Unfortunately because I live in Seattle, it is difficult to predict when and where the rain may strike. My recourse will be to bring a plastic bag to cover my seat and if all else fails, load my bike onto the bus' front rack. (I'm really afraid of this act, though!) My mtn bike is a beater, though, using it only because I won't be too put out if it gets stolen. I wish I could take my new speedy slick road bike, but I would be really upset if that disappeared.

As I'm going on into this next phase I'm not sure what I'm going to do, how I'm going to approach my fitness now that the training and race are over with. I like the idea of training for another goal, but also want to be the type of person who doesn't necessarily need the end goal to drive me. I want the basic idea of being healthy as my impetus for busting my balls at 6am, or in a hot gym, etc. I've got some thoughts but will have to see how putting them into practice pans out....

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Exactly How Many Is A Brazillion?

It has taken every bit of energy to move my phalanges to log in and type this right now. Well, I got punkd. AKA, I got sick. A tinge of the post-marathon travel across the country 4 times in that many days fever. Yep. SEA-->CHI-->SEA-->DFW-->TAMPA. Add to that a bunch of medicine and drinks of all varieties and you've got this. A be-scrubbed old t-shirtted girl on the 6th floor of the worst Radisson in history. The worst part of the Radisson is that it has internet access that allows me to do this. Ouch. Long story short is that I did the race, it was hard, but I did it. Many thoughts/recap/emotions and stuff that I'd like to document and I realize as the days go by I am losing more and more of it, but I will do it once I get a minute. I am done being sore and feel lazy and lethargic already. Once I get a free moment, after I document my marathon glory, I am going for a bazillion-mile run. I talked to Maritza the other day and it was great. Haven't talked in a while and it was good to hear voice to familiar voice what she had to say. I keep forgetting that I have these friends in low places! I have been able to view some of the official race photos but the site isn't letting me get on it right now otherwise I'd post some. Back to that brazillion-mile run. Its going to be sweet. And hot. And hot and sweet.

Have a good night!

Friday, October 05, 2007

I Am Really Going To Do This Thing


I've decided to put nerves aside and just have fun. Commiserating with my future self at mile 20 isn't going to do me any good right now. It's not! So I'm focusing on being excited about my first little marathon. The cat is out of the bag at work and everyone keeps wishing me luck, which is fun (a little embarrassing, but good since I'm an attention whore).

Get this - the weather report for Chicago on Sunday has been changing from thunderstorms-->rain-->clouds-->mostly sunny and from hot to HOTTER. The high on Sunday will be almost 90 degrees. Huh? Yep, so my focus is also on hydration and not melting. I had envisioned myself time and again at the start area bundled up in the early morning with sleety rain and a cold nose. Not anymore... This will be much much warmer than I've been training in and the humidity much higher. I'm just going to go with it, keep on drinkin' and keep on truckin'.

I've also decided my music plan. I'm going to bring the iPod w/me and tuck it in my sports bra like I always do. My plan is to go the 1st half without anything and then see from there on. iPods are banned, but just see if they can try and pull me off of that course. Bastards.

I think I have everything set up logistically for the travel and the wknd. I can't wait to see my family and friends and the wonderful city of Chicago.

Tuesday, October 02, 2007

How Am I Feeling?





Addressing #1, I have just taken a Tylenol PM after trying unsuccessfully to sleep for about 2 hours (it is now midnight). I am really tired, but my mind just won't stop. There is too much going on in there and I can't relax enough to count those sheep. I also have a headache that is annoying me and won't go away.

I started feeling sick on Sunday when I conked out on the couch at like 7:30 pm. OUT. It was great to get some shut eye, but knowing me, I only do this when I'm sick. I went to work on Monday and was pretty out of it, but perked up near the end of the day. I got increasingly tired when I got home and crashed at about 9:30, sleeping 11 straight hours beyond that. I worked from home today, which clearly required my staying in PJ's until 3:30, when I went out for a run. I only went 3 miles but it did not feel good. My pace averaged 8:23 so that was probably quicker than I needed to go, so maybe that's why it felt crappy? This bug thing has been going around my office and it seems to be gone within a couple of days. So, I continue to take my vitamins, drink water, eat well and get plenty of sleep.

I have been going over in my head what my goals are for this race, and slightly stressing out about it. I want to push it but want to finish strong. I don't want to be disappointed if I don't hit x, y or z. The more I think about it though the more I realize that this isn't necessarily my last marathon. I sort of vowed that I would not do more of these races, but toward the end of this training I've found myself saying "well, next time I'll do this..." So, I've decided that no matter how you slice it I'm going to PR on Sunday. AND, if I decide to continue on this crazy path, then I may as well leave myself some room for improvement, right?


Is it lame to listen to my iPod during my first ever, crowd roaring, kick-ass Chicago marathon?

I really want to "keep doing what I've been doing" (Maritza 2007) and that would include listening to my iPod. I want to enjoy the crowd and the experience but would like the safety blanket of having it there if I need some distraction. I usually run with the little guy tucked into a small ziploc inbetween the layers of my sports bra(s) in front, so I supposed if I didn't want the ear buds out I could just tuck them in the bag as well. I think I can figure it out logistically, but my question is, how lame is that?



Sunday, September 30, 2007

Off the Richter

One week from now I'll be done with my first marathon. I will have finished within my goal and will have an unstoppable smile as I hang out with my family and friends in a place I completely adore. I'll have salt crusted around my face and probably one less toenail, but will feel the relief of completely what I've been looking forward to for so long. I listened to the Phedippidations podcast the other day while running and the topic was first marathons. One account was of the Chicago marathon and the whole thing got me all welled up (while running). I am an emotional person to start with but I have not expected myself to be one of those weepy runners - I'm hard core dammit! We'll see how this all goes down next week, but I may get one of those finish line pics that shows how much this shit got to me.

Strange abnormal stuff going on this week, but I think I'll be okay. Sparing details, I think my psyche is guiding my body and what its doing. I am nervous (excited-nervous, but still nervous) and I can't hide it. I'll be okay.

I'm sure I've babbled on about the aches and pains I've had throughout the training, but they're still there. I've got pain in the arches of my feet, the bones not muscles, moderate pain in my knees, but not that bad and something relatively new in the hamstring area of my left leg. It goes from my lower knee basically up to my butt. I would have thought w/this taper that it would subside somewhat, but all symptoms come up quickly into my runs. Is there anything I can do about this or is it too late? Can all marathoners assume that they'll finish the race in bad physical shape? I'd really love to run this comfortably, but coming to terms that I probably won't. Which is okay, I can push through it as long as I know I'm not damaging myself in the long term. Any thoughts?

Logistics are coming into place - I think I can get on the earlier flight and I'm praying I can go #2 before the run. Honestly, that is the one thing that I'm worried about. NUMBER TWO. Question - should I try to get someone to run with me for a few miles near the end? Will I want it or be annoyed? It is going to be warm (70*) and rainy in Chicago next Sunday for the race - should be perfect.

My best memory of training was when someone on the street told me "your thighs are off the richter!" - but even better have been the shout outs from my inspirational peeps down in Cali. Thanks so much guys for the support and advice because I'm not sure how I could have gone through this w/o that.

Back to the final days - I will try to connect before the race again but it might not be until afterward. Wish me luck!

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Tofu Pot Pie

I just got done running about 9 miles, but only actually timed 7.5, which was an even hour. I sort of ran/walked the rest. I'm trying not to push things too hard but its hard to push myself any less than I have over most of my training. (My friend was grilling me about my training yesterday, asking all the details "how hard is it really?" and I had to admit that I really haven't sacrificed as much as I thought I would have. I really haven't changed my lifestyle that much - I still drink, stay up late and slack off as usual. I guess I'll do my official training recap soon after the race is over with...well see what I have to say then.)

I digress. I ate a Clif Bar right before running tonight and that was stupid. Within 20 minutes of my run I immediately felt like it had gone through my entire system and was ready to get out. Gross, yes, but isn't everything?

This weekend I'm going to plan my logistics in a really detailed manner. I'll probably even pack my bags! Some good advice I've heard recently that I think I'll adhere to:

*put your name on your shirt so everyone can cheer for you
*use safety pins to keep your Gu packs on you
*Chicago marathon has a text messager thingy tool that you can sign up for to see where a runner is at during the race
*get to the start 2 hours early to figure out what the H is going on and find a spot (there are 45,000 runners!)

I also called the Chi marathon office to see when they'd be sending out the race materials. Turns out they already did and they sent it to the address I had back in January, which is obviously different than the one I have now. I was reassured that it only contained my race number, which she told me, and a race brochure that I can download online. Luckily I changed my address with them so my race results will be sent to me post-race. But the best part of this conversation is my race number - 11766 - which is very close to another very important number, part of the reason I'm running this race: 11677, the date of my birth! Is this karma or what?

I've weaseled my way into staying at a friend's place in Lincoln Park. They will not be there, I will have a warm, cushy bed and no felines lingering around to start up my allergies. The plan is to sleep solo on Saturday night so I can have some P&Q. I'm not sure yet that I'm okay with this. Yes, I want to go to bed early, get plenty of sleep, etc, but I also want some support and encouragement from the moment my head hits the pillow and right from the get go at 5am or whatever. I've still got time to think on that one before I have to coerce someone into not partying with old friends in the best city ever. It is going to be really hard for me to not be able to go out that night, but oh well...

I made a mistake in booking my ticket too. I wanted to leave on Saturday, be able to sleep in before rushing to the airport and also avoid the temptations that the Windy City will bring upon me. My flight doesn't get in until 5pm Central time and the race expo closes at 6 - not enough time for me to get there from O'hare. I could get someone else to pick my bib up for me but I don't dare risk it. I don't want to rush either, so I'm going to change my ticket to leave early and arrive at about 3pm.

Much more prep and planning but I'm so pumped! I'm doing my checklist soon and might go to the extent of a minute by minute itinerary up until the gun. What goes without planning is the ridiculous party I'm going to have once I finish - brunch at Stanley's, drinks at Irish Eyes, drinks at Kendalls, drinks at whatever and whenever and where ever. Chicago here I come!

Monday, September 24, 2007

13 Days Left

Detox and the countdown begins. Not exactly sure what the detox will entail but it makes me feel better advertising that I'm on a program. No beer, no wine until 10/7 afternoon. I had a crappy long run the wknd before last but on Sunday I had a terrific 12 miler. I ran at a pace that felt fast, but not too fast and barely looked down at the Garmin. I was happy to read at the end that I'd averaged 8:17 miles. I know the race will be >2x the length but I'm thinking I can at least try to tough things out at a fast pace than I'd previously thought.

I love life right now - facial, walks around the city, NFL, NCAA - yeah.

Thursday, September 20, 2007

How the hell does time go by so fast? I spent last weekend with friends kayaking and camping on Blind Island.

It was heaps of fun. I ran 15 miles on Sunday that was not heaps of fun. I've run this week, but barely. Work has been 24/7 and now that its died down I'm just tired. So much for anything really positive to say! Race logistics to be planned this weekend...17 days left!

Sunday, September 09, 2007

2nd and Last 20-Miler

Ouch!! I did my loooooong run today and can't believe it. I felt so much better than the last time I did this, given I had plenty of food and water this go-around.

Woke up at 9, drank water, coffee and a dry 8-grain roll from Starbucks. More water, lube up with Body Glide, 2 cubes of shot blocks, put together my goody bags and out (10:55 a.m.). Ran straight from home this time, which alleviated some miles on the monotonous (yet graciously flat) Burke Gilman Trail. I'm smart - the first few miles are downhill - very smart.

I had Josh put out water and 2 small baggies, each filled 2 cubes of Margarita w/Salt Shot Blocks and a half of Oatmeal Walnut Clif Bar. One at mile 12.5 and another at about mile 16. Overall I ate all of the Shot Blocks (200 cal) and half the Clif bar (122 cal) and consumed around 1.25 liters of water. Is that good? I don't know, but I did not feel hungry or dehydrated so its good enough for me. I think I would have done better spreading the water consumption over a longer period of time because my stomach did feel a little bloated and uncomfortable. I figure during the race I'll hit up enough water stops to make this possible.

I only stopped a couple of times, once to use the bathroom, once to open the baggie and drink some water, and then for a couple of stop lights. My recorded time shows actual running time, not any of these stops, but the delta would be pretty negligible. I'm hoping during the actual race to not have any stops, except for grabbing water on the go... Can I do it? We'll see.

Mile 1 = 9:03
2 = 9:22
3 = 9:03
4 = 9:13
5 = 9:11
6 = 9:14
7 = 9:22
8 = 8:39
9 = 8:57
10 = 8:40
11 = 8:48
12 = 8:50
13 = 9:08
14 = 9:06
15 = 9:09
16 = 9:31
17 = 9:08
18 =9:33
19 = 8:30
20 = 8:24

Total time = 3:00
Total miles = 20
Avg Pace = 9:02

My goal was to remain relatively consistent and see what felt good. I also wanted to finish strong as a test to see how much I had left in the tank. I think I did a good job w/the consistency. It is hard to start slower than you feel like, but I think it worked out. I think I could have run the 1st 7 miles a little faster, since I clearly sped up after that and it seemed to click. The 1st 10 miles took me 1:30:44 and the 2nd half was 1:30:07, there is a small negative split there.

Every training guide I've read says to train on your long runs much slower than you'd do in the actual race. My question is -how the heck am I expected to run that much faster in the actual race?! Not only is it a faster pace, but more miles. I'm having a hard time wrapping myself around this concept. I am just worried that if I shoot for running X pace during the race I'm going to crap myself out early. I just don't know what to expect or what to shoot for. I guess its something I'm going to have to think about over the next 26 days.

Total Miles this week = 42.5 Whoa! I didn't realize I got that many miles in - I am really pleased.

Saturday, September 08, 2007

4 Weeks Left

Oh how I should never post what my "planned" runs are for the week... What I ended up running was drastically different:

T - I decided to not run today, I felt totally tired and could not even conceptualize putting one foot in front of the other.
W - I ran 10 miles
Th - did not run at lunch as planned, too much work to do, then an after-work party that I had to attend
F - too hungover and tired to run

Sweet, huh?

After I finish watching my Wolverines get embarrassed I am going to hit the roads for an easy 6 or so. I'm planning to replicate race-day tomorrow by getting up early and running 20. I have a rodeo to attend at 1, so I'm going to need to get started early.

My run on Wednesday went exceptionally well. I sucked down a Gu and left straight from my office for home. My only goal was to run the 2nd half faster than the 1st and I did! But look at the consistency in my pace, that is even throughout lots of elevation change.

Mile 1 = 8:28
Mile 2 = 8:41
Mile 3 = 8:34
Mile 4 = 8:33
Mile 5 = 8:31
Mile 6 = 8:36
Mile 7 = 8:38
Mile 8 = 8:38
Mile 9 = 7:50
Mile 10 = 7:40

Overall pace = 8:28 (whoo hoo!)
1st half pace = 8:30
2nd half pace = 8:16

I felt really great the whole time. It is such a confidence boost when you have a good run.

News on the toenails - I think they're destined for heaven. They're getting darker and looks like they're shriveling up. I know its gross, but for some reason I'm really fascinated by it. (Its the screen saver on my phone right now - disgusting.)

I bought another pair of my same shoes today. My current ones are at 250 and I'd like to have a newish pair for the race, so I'm going to start breaking them in. I also bought my first real "technical" sports bra today. I am really fussy about having my chest in place while I run and it bothers me if I feel like I'm moving around anywhere in that region. My solution so far has been to double, sometimes triple, up on the sports bras. I decided to give it a shot and spend some coin ($45) on a fancy one. This has hooks in the back, a crossover type strapping mechanism and molded cups. Here's what it looks like:

I still need to figure out what I'm wearing for race day, where to place family/friends along the course, where to eat the night before (thinking Pasta Bowl, right next to my old apt and one of my favorite restaurants), what to eat/drink during the race, how to set up my Garmin, what socks to wear, how fast to run, where to sleep the night before, how to get to the start, who will pick up my race packet for me......ahh! So much to think about. I'm finding that lately all I want to do is talk to people about running. I could hardly contain myself with the sales guy at the running store - I wanted to ask him if he could sit down for coffee with me. I'm nuts.

Tuesday, September 04, 2007

This Week's Plan

Back to the rain capital of the world!

T = 6.5
W = 6.5
Th = 45 tempo (@ lunch)
F = rest
Sa = 20 long run
Su = 5-6 recovery

I averaged 10.5 hours of sleep per night this past weekend so should be really rested. I am hoping to start waking up earlier to get a workout in before work, like some weights at the gym. I really only need a half hour down there so it is feasible to get up at 6 and get all that done w/o making it to work any later. We’ll see how that goes. I am NOT a morning person so this is going to be really hard.

Also, one of my toenails is turning black and I’m dying to know if it will fall off!

9/3 - Last Day

On the way out of dodge, we decided to do an 8 mile hike that was highly recommended. It was late so we had to rush and ended up running a lot of it. According to my Garmin it was only 6.5, but whatever; we probably ran about half of it (where we could). It took us about 2 hours to complete and that includes stopping for views, eating blackberries and prancing under a waterfall.

9/2 - You’re in the West now, Baby

My Garmin was not charged and I couldn’t find my Timex watch, so today I ran unassisted. It was weird to do that since I’ve become so dependent on the tools, yet completely relaxing. I ran from the cabin down to the Columbia to see where the natives draw their salmon from. Almost got hit by a long speeding train, got a friendly toot & wave from the train’s engineer. It was a short quick run, probably about 3.5 miles.

I have sadly pieced together the outcome of my training thus far and am extremely disappointed. My school and work schedule are largely to blame, but the blame ultimately lies with you know who. I’ll give myself credit for doing the long runs w/o much training behind them, and also for showing up over the past couple of weeks.

My shoes are at about 250 miles and will definitely be too broken in by race day. I’m going to start on another pair to take the pressure off.

9/1 - 15-miler aka Steak, Please

I’m in Southern Washington, by the Gorge (that’s the Columbia River gorge) on vacation at a lovely cabin on a lake. I set out today to complete 20 miles, or as long as I could go. Technically, I shouldn’t be doing 20 mile long runs in 2 consecutive weeks, but since I have felt guilty about my previous training, I thought I’d give it a shot. Some things to consider before I lay out my stats:


The climate here is warmer than the Puget Sound. I have been lucky enough to have some great temps for running up in Seattle and forgot there was any alternative. For me hot is 80+ degrees in the sun – and today was just about that. I believe that this affected my pace on the negative side, but probably only marginally. Heck, it could turn out to be this hot in Chicago in October – I used to live there and this is known to happen.


I am not familiar with local places to run here and we decided that the road we came in on was sufficient to run on later – not too hilly, and pretty much a straight shot. I wasn’t going to get lost (yes, even with a GPS system strapped onto my person, I tend to get lost). I was on a well-paved 2 lane road that leads from the river north into the mountains, the Gifford Pinchot Forest to be specific. I did not consider how much I would be running on the gravel shoulder.

Food/Water Intake

Today I was smarter than last week. I ate before my run! To be precise I had this:

· Bowl of yogurt with cherrios
· Several sesame crackers
· Banana
· Some Jelly Belly’s

Like last week I had a coffee and plenty of water pre-game. If you tuned in last week I screwed myself, however, this week I had a crew! Josh took his bike out and went ahead of me, dropping frozen bottles of water and a baggie of Clif bar + sour Jelly Bellys at mile 5 (also 15) and mile 10. This was key. Because of the heat I really was jonsing for some water at about mile 5 and happy to have a cold bottle waiting for me. I stopped for a minute, grabbed it to go and was on my way again. Normally I hate running with water swishing around in my hand, but today it was fine & I really needed it. At mile 10 another cold baby was there and this time I indulged in the Clif bar. (Side note – although the pacific NW is quite physically active, the local grocer in the city of Stevenson does not carry more than the typical sport bars in stock. Must stock up on gu, shot blocks, etc. when I get home. I decided that Jelly Bellys were sufficient and personally satisfying hence my choice in bringing them as refreshments. SOUR Jelly Bellys.) I stopped for a couple of minutes to drink, eat and turn myself around. I honestly can’t imagine what I would have felt like had I not had water with me today.

The run itself – several of the above factors contributed positively and negatively toward my run today. The heat sucked. Places where I was not in the shade made me wilty. The gravel situation ruined my epidermis. I think the instability of the gravel causes one to grip tighter with their toes and leads to more rubbing than usual. One of my toes has the hugest pillow of a blister sitting underneath it. I could feel this one start before mile 5. I got another category 3 blister on my arch of the same foot. It could possibly be the socks – Nike, and not the really good ones. Last week the Wright Socks did me wright, but this week I should have used them again. Nike, you are on probation.

I turned around at mile 10 and was like, yeah…halfway there…how the hell am I going to do this?? Josh passed me at mile 12 and we stopped to re-assess. I told him I was feeling it in my knees and feet and was pretty spent. He was supportive and told me he’d bike back to the car and come pick me up. I ended up hitting mile 15 right before he drove up to me. I don’t think I could have run successfully any farther. This long mileage is new to me and since I haven’t done it much I’m not sure how to read my body. But I think sometimes there is no denying what your limits are – today I knew I didn’t need to prove anything going 20, and 15 was plenty. The blisters and pain in my knees and feet were at the point where I felt I could injure myself if I went on.

I iced my knees on the car ride back and soaked my feet in ice water when we got back. I also had beer, wine, potatoes, pasta salad, tuna, corn, watermelon and STEAK (really?) for dinner. I fell asleep on the couch at 9 then decided to come up for some private time for writing this. At press time, I am truly spent.

Mile 1 = 9:12
Mile 2 = 9:43
Mile 3 = 9:44
Mile 4 = 9:41 (miles 1-5 covered about 500 ft elevation, flat my ass)
Mile 5 = 10:09 (stop for water)
Mile 6 = 9:14
Mile 7 = 9:35
Mile 8 = 9:11
Mile 9 = 9:21
Mile 10 = 9:18
Mile 11 = 9:20
Mile 12 = 9:19
Mile 13 = 9:01
Mile 14 = 9:15
Mile 15 = 10:47 (a little stop for breath/stretch)

Total Miles = 15
Average Pace = 9:31

A couple more observations:

·I took Jen’s advice and started off slower, I didn’t realize that I’d need it to compensate for the heat; overall I think I did a better job of staying more consistent with my pace from mile to mile. There were really only a couple of miles that strayed from the 9:10-9:45 pace.
·I didn’t feel like I got into my groove until about mile 8 (there was a constant elevation until then that I didn’t realize until I downloaded my info just now from my Garmin)

You know it’s scary when running 15 miles doesn’t seem daunting.

Friday, August 31, 2007


I am tired tired tired. Heading out for a cabin weekend shortly and will therefore not post until at least Tuesday. Here ia a picture of where I'm going....

Thursday, August 30, 2007

Gates' Gate

What better way to wait out traffic than to go for a lovely run through Medina, then take a dip in Lake Washington as the sun sets, eh?

Mile 1 = 9:31
Mile 2 = 9:09
Mile 3 = 8:56
Mile 4 = 7:37
last 0.2 = 6:37 pace

Total Miles = 4.2
Average Pace = 8:42

Talk about negative splits! There were a lot of downhills on the way back, but plenty of uphills too. Afterwards we jumped in the lake and watched the sun set. However, traffic was still bad at 8pm. Thanks again Seattle!

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Early Bird

Chicago is two hours behind my Pacific time and, since I am arriving in Chicago about 14 hours before my event I will not have time to acclimate to the time change. Therefore, I will begin my acclimation right from home!

Week of September 17th - start waking up at 6am
Week of September 24th - start waking up at 5am
Week of October 1st - start waking up at 4am

This way when I wake up on race day I won't be overly exhausted! Has anyone ever tried this before?

Pace Tat

How cool is this?


Over the Lake

I did not run on Monday, sadly, but I think my Tuesday performance made up for it. My body was obviously happy for the rest I gave it. This run goes in two sections: section one is from work to the last bus stop before the 520 bridge (~3.4 miles). Then....wait for the bus.....take bus across bridge - this ended up being about 15 minutes total this particular time, but its been longer. Section two is from the bus stop to home (~3.2 miles). Here are my splits:

Mile 1 = 7:53
Mile 2 = 7:11
Mile 3 = 7:44
Mile 4 = 8:21
Mile 5 = 9:44 (a big hill, my nemesis, but I'm usually at about a 11:30/12 pace here)
Mile 6 = 8:11
Last 0.6 = 6:51

Total miles = 6.6 miles
Average pace = 8:03

Monday, August 27, 2007


I woke up at about 8:30 a.m. on Sunday, tinkered around and drank coffee, guzzled water and mentally/physically prepared myself until 11:30ish. Parked the car on the trail and headed out...here's what happened:

Mile 1 - 8:39
Mile 2 - 8:41
Mile 3 - 8:44
Mile 4 - 8:35
Mile 5 - 8:47
Mile 6 - 8:37
Mile 7 - 8:32
Mile 8 - 8:41
Mile 9 - 8:49
Mile 10 - 8:49

The first ten miles were great. I had placed the car in a spot where I could stop back at about mile 7 where I took a quick drink break, maybe a minute or so, then headed right back out. As you can see, I start slowing down in the next 10 miles, but things didn't really start feeling bad until Mile 15.

Mile 11 - 9:06
Mile 12 - 9:11
Mile 13 - 9:21
Mile 14 - 9:13
Mile 15 - 9:29

This is where I paused because of pork chop (which I don't even like) hallucinations. Over two hours into it and my body was screaming at me. For the food I didn't eat and the water I didn't take with me on the run. Yes, I didn't have anything to eat before my run - at all, unless a vanilla latte counts. I staggered off the trail at a park figuring I'd find a water fountain and I did. I also opened my eyes to the hundreds of feet of blackberry bushes that line everything in Seattle. And they were ready to eat. I spent about 5 minutes shoveling those down my gullet; I was clearly in survival mode. Back to the run.

Mile 16 - 10:38
Mile 17 - 10:05

Stopped again for some blackberries - had thorn cuts all over my hands and my fingers and purple juice on my chin.

Mile 18 - 9:55
Mile 19 - 10:43
Mile 20 - 8:25

After struggling through 18-19 I killed it on mile 20. I just wanted to get home and also to prove I could complete a negative split. So there.

Total miles = 20
Avg Pace = 9:09

I think for my first 20-miler this was a decent pace. Mentally and physically it was hard at times, but at least I know I can do it. If I can power through those tough stretches and just keep going, then I can significantly lower my overall pace. I have 2 more 20-milers scheduled so have the chance to feel more comfortable with the distance before the race. Then, it'll only be 6.2 more and I'm home free!

Casualties of the day: open wounds on hands from blackberry bushes, bloody toe (?), NO chafing!, lingering soreness today in my joints, specifically the outside of my left knee and some bones in my feet. I think everything is blue pain, so I'm not too worried. Heading out for an easy easy 4 miles right now.

Lessons learned:

*Food: Do not go out for 20 miles on an empty stomach, no matter how gross it feels to eat before a run.

*Water: For this long of a run I am going to have to plan water stops for myself. This might mean hiding bottles along my route at certain check points. Perhaps also with a Clif bar or gu.

Topics on my mind:
*salt tablets
*sleeping pills
*race attire

I am very freaked out about the date coming closer but am oh so excited to run back on my old stomping grounds.

Saturday, August 25, 2007

Easy Like

Even though I have been less than diligent in keeping up with my Hal Higdon schedule, I am still trying to follow it from here until the end. That is, with necessary modifications. Tomorrow Hal tells me to run 12 miles. This is supposed to be my recoup week from last week's 20 mile long run.... However, since I did not do the 20 miler last weekend I think tomorrow will be 20, or as close to it as I can come.

My plan is to drive to the trail, not run straight from home, so as to avoid the torturous few miles it is uphill back to my place. I will again bore myself with the Burke Gilman trail, but I will download the latest TAL and imagine the glory of finishing my first marathon to pass the hours.

Wish me luck peeps.

(Picture of the Olympic Sculpture Park in Seattle to keep it interesting.)

The Story So Far

I have been training for the Chicago marathon since June. The race is on October 7th and I am in the final stretches of training. I have had several roadblocks, including summer, laziness, school, work, travel and beer (not in that order). Here are some of the items that have gotten me through it:

These are the shoes I've been training in. Just these, no rotating. Not sure if this is a smart idea yet....I might get another pair soon and use those during the marathon. These are Asics GT-2120.

I always took pride that I could run without aural aids, but alas, I was wrong. I love listening to music and This American Life and NPR to pretend like I'm up to date on world issues.

The Burke Gilman trail in Seattle is the longest path around and what I've been doing my long runs on. It is beautiful in parts, but has become boring. There is also ONE drinking fountain along the whole damn thing. What is up with that?

I got a cool breathable hat, and that's about all there is to say about that. Mine is actually the above model, but blue.

Ice baths! Nothing sounds crazier than soaking your body in a tub full of this, but it does the damn trick. Thanks Maritza for the tip.

Then, of course, my newest favorite addition - the Garmin. This thing is amazing. I could go on for hours, but won't. The apparatus and act of using it has its downfalls, but overall its a pretty cool deal.

I will have more to report soon, so check back later!


Saturday, May 26, 2007

Get a Get a Get a Get a Garmin

I got a Garmin! The Forerunner 305, which is what I've been lusting after for ages. I just found out I get a significant discount through my employer so I splurged and got one! It should arrive in 7-10 days, just in time to start my official marathon training.

Friday, 5/25 - did quick loop in Discovery Park that was probably les than 3 miles. It was fun, no rush.

Monday, May 21, 2007

Daffodil My Ass

The weekend started off pleasant enough, dinner out on the town, leisurely breakfast, then I made a wrong turn somewhere around Orting, WA.

"Sure, 50 miles sounds great!"

I basically tore my behind into shreds which obviously is not a nice visual. The route would have been gorgeous since we were so close to Mt Rainer, but the clouds (which later turned to rain) covered up any prospect of the hills being alive. Some problems incurred on this ride:

*chafing in bad places (note to self, don't wear *blank* next time)
*busy roads
*bumpy roads
*too much traffic/too little shoulder
*no daffodils as promised!

I was cruising happily at about a 65% pain level until mile 35 when it dramatically increased to, say, 99%. Not only was my ass chapped (literally) but my neck/traps were just screaming. I guess its from being in that posture for so long. In all we were peddling away for 4 hours. 4 hours is long time to be doing anything, let alone perch your entire body weight on a couple of pressure points. Especially when you have bird-bone syndrom (hollow bones).

Sunday, May 13, 2007

Get your Vashon

Headed over to Vashon island today via the WSF to do a little loop around the isla. Turns out the loop is 42 miles of hills, but never mind that. It was great, once I got the hang of getting into my easier gears the hills weren't as bad. Considering I haven't been training at all in cycling I did pretty well. Legs were slightly burning most of the ride and will definitely be sore tomorrow. However, I did feel like more of a bad ass than when I woke up this morning and you really can't beat that.

Saturday, May 05, 2007


Surprisingly I woke up after exactly 8 hours of sleep feeling good enough to run. I jumped out of bed and immediately put on my running gear, which may be a good enough trick to getting me out of the door. I was out on the streets by 9:10 and had a plan to run exactly 50 minutes until I reached a garage sale that started at 10. I ran along South Lake Union, North to the University Bridge, then through some gorgeous neighborhoods in Volunteer Park. I stopped a couple of times to check out the views of the lakes and boats and houses, but I pretty much hit my mark and was only 5 minutes late to the g-sale. It was a mighty clusterfrig with fat people and their dogs, but I scored tons of crap that I'm pleased about. From there I walked home, stopping at Value Village along the way to buy some more crap.

I think my run was about 4.5/5 miles but since I was stopping and going I don't really know what my pace was. Let's call it a fun run. I put in another couple of miles on the pavement later by walking downtown and back. I bought some more crap down there too but this was retail crap.

I've spent the last hour readying blogs about people who like to thrift stuff (garage sales, antique stores, flea markets, etc.) and its totally inspiring me....to buy more and maybe to write about it. If I ever get a camera again I may start picturing the crap that I find on here!

Friday, May 04, 2007

F is for Friday

I ran the same route on Wednesday as I did on Monday. Except I went a little bit longer. I discovered that I ran farther than I thought on Monday so that brings up my pace a little bit which is a good thing. I don't have the stats on hand right now but I think I averaged under 9 minute miles, which makes me happy considering the incline and wind that was in my grill the whole time. I basically felt like ass the entire run, but kept thinking that when I finished I'd feel totes better. Not so. I don't want to explain what followed, but it sucked. The only thing I can chalk it up to is the beer I had the night before or the carrots and coffee only diet I had leading up to the run. I think I need to pay more attention to what I eat and drink. There are junior high school habits that I still hold on to which include consuming entire boxes of cereal at a time. Its just not right. I'm 30 FGS. Back to the Wednesday run, I somehow hit the sweet spot, an HOUR of sunlight in Redmond. How lucky is that?

So, right now 2 runs for 11 miles M-F is good for me. Anything is better than nothing right? But the truth is that I need more more more - after I got done feeling sick on W, I actually felt higher than a kite for a long time. The endorphins lasted many hours and I miss that feeling. I think I owe it to myself to pony up.

Other thoughts:
*bikram yoga again
*new bike - the possibilities are endless (investigate wknd rides, possible commute alternatives)
*maybe start using my gym membership
*go to some local group runs
*start eating better you sloth!

ps - I'm going to Tim Gunn's book signing on Sunday - how f'ing cool is that?

Snickerdoodle Heaven

Oh my god, in the mail just arrived a package with a DOZEN Aroma cookies from Liz. I cannot believe she sent these to me. So nice! This rounds out my planned meal tonight of Baked Lays and good Pinot. Seriously, could life be better?

Monday, April 30, 2007


And dolce means sweet beyotch. I bought a bike yesterday and tore out of work today to come home and test drive it. Seattle bitch slapped me again with rain as I exited my office, so no go on the new wheels. I bought a Specialized Dolce in Portland last night to evade sales tax. Total entry level bike but felt good on the test runs compared to the others. I just wanted a bike so didn't throw too much into research and decision-making. The front fork is carbon and rear is aluminum, shimano shifters and not sure of the breaks. Its blue and white with white tape on the handle bars. I didn't get clipless pedals/shoes, want to feel comfortable riding on it first before I start really risking my life.

Ran some miles at lunch today while it was still sort of nice out. 4.8 miles in 48 minutes - you do the math. The bitch of it was the damn elevation, 350 ft over about a mile, is that hard or is it just me?

Monday, April 09, 2007


I'm still scared shitless a little bit on the bike, so trudging along timidly. My traps and lower back get sore - and I'm only going about 8 miles. I forgot to time the 1st 1.5 mile, so for the last 6 I timed myself at about 21:00. My goal is to do 40k in under 1:10. That will be sandwiched inbetween a swim and a run too.

After about a ten minute break and some water, I went running. Ran 4.44 miles at an 8:11 pace.

Sunday, April 08, 2007

I'm in MA, visiting my sister for a few days. Running around her place is a tradition when I'm here and brings back good memories. I have been running since my last January post. Pretty frequently, but not enough for me to be obsessive about logging them here. I may transfer the data from my spreadsheet, or maybe not.

It is time to get serious about the marathon and what my plan of attack will be. I'm getting interested in doing a triathlon perhaps in June/July, before marathon training starts. I just hope I don't burn out.


Biked 8 miles, not sure of time. My first time on a road bike. I feel once getting out of the clips. Got off the bike and ran 3.6 miles at an 8:24 pace.


Ran gradual hilly course in Boston - 5.6 miles in about 50 minutes. Crappy pace, but it was good to get out.

Monday, January 22, 2007

Its about time


job hunt = time consuming, exhausting, traveling


job find = yay - a promotion, let's celebrate (e.g. drink)
job resignation = bigger yay, let's drink some more!
birthday = yay, my last year in my 20's!
thanksgiving = 5 days of wine and food and Napa


move = stress
starting job = focus & excitement
living w/no longer long distant bf = who has time to run?
getting really sick = taking a week off of the job just started and feeling horrific
xmas = tons of traveling and celebrating


No longer sick, work is routine, no excuses.

January 22nd:

Go running!

3.6 miles
9:10 pace

Happy New Year!