Thursday, February 27, 2014

Edge of The World 10k & Freezeroo Thoughts

Part one of the 2 day racing weekend was the 'Edge of the World 10k', which also happened to be the final race of the Freezeroo Series I have been doing. This was actually on Saturday and then I ran Lake Effect Half Marathon on Sunday.

Going into the race I was feeling good with 2 rest days prior, but I also am well aware that anything can happen. Did I think I would PR...possibly, but not certainly. Spoiler- I didn't. While I may not have PR'd, I certainly ran a strong race(for me) and feel good heading into early season runs.

Having Hollie there to warm-up with definitely made me happy, as well as seeing so many other runner friends that I know. It was also nice know that we were ALL going to be dealing with the wicked wind. At least no one blew away, that I know of.
About a mile into the race, my first time breaking out my flats for the year. I still love the neon laces.
It was actually a decent day, sunny and blue skies but the wind was killer. I knew it was going to affect me (everyone) but I tried my best.

The first 2 miles I was feeling good, it was easy and relaxed. I was also running faster than expected and started thinking about a possible PR. First two miles were in the 6:25-6:30 range, too fast but I think on another day I would have maintained it.

Around Mile 4 &5 the headwind became ridiculous, Mile 4 was just under 7 min pace and mile 5 was 7:18. Now before you go thinking this was because I was tired from starting fast, that might be part of it but the main issue was the headwind. I felt like I was standing still, my legs and everything were still feeling good but there is only so much you can do with 20+ mph headwind.
Final Sprint to the finish line. 

Luckily when we made the last turn we had a slight tailwind/cross wind and nothing directly in our faces. I was able to pick up the pace and actually passed the second place girl within the last half mile. I finished in 41:44 which is only 20 seconds slower than my PR.

I really didn't care if I PR'd or not, the Freezeroo series was about hard workouts for me. I feel really strong after the last few races and know that there is no way I would have gotten my half marathon PR the following day at Lake Effect had I not done the series. There is something to be said about continuing to race through the winter. No, the weather conditions for each of the races wasn't ideal, but that's the point. Learn to run hard when the conditions are harder. Was I happy to wake up early every other Saturday in the blistering cold and snow for these? No, but I am certainly glad that I did. I only did 4 of the 6 races this year, as the first 2 were in December when I was still recovering from CIM. I'm looking forward to doing the series again next year as it was a great way to stay motivated during the winter.

The other Freezeroo Recaps if you are interested: Pineway Ponds 5 mile, Hearnish Race, Valentines 8 Mile

After the 4 races, I ended up in 3rd place overall for females. Each race is scored on points and where you rank among other series runners.  I was happy to be able to place in top 3, and hopefully can increase that standing next year.

Have you ever done a race series?
I really enjoyed it as I was able to meet new people, spend time with friends, and build healthy competition with others. 

Winter racing, Love or hate? 
Definitely a love-hate for me, it certainly made me tougher and prepared me for a great spring.

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Lake Effect Half Marathon: Friends & PR's

This was actually the second race of the weekend, I raced a 10k the day before but I will recap that one tomorrow :)

Lake Effect Half Marathon was something I have been looking forward to for months. Hollie was going to be staying with me for the weekend, and then meeting up with Heather, Brittany and others for the race Sunday. It's not always easy having your close friends not live near you, so a weekend with them was certainly a bright spot.

I never planned on racing this race, it's early in the year and the weather is known to be non-ideal for a race (come on it's February). I also raced a 10k the day before, so I was planning on using the half as a training run for Boston. My goal for the race was to come at or around my marathon pace. It was a smart plan, run hard but more importantly have fun and enjoy my time with my friends.

The weather was uncharacteristic for this race, it was blue skies and sunny with little wind and NO snow.The first mile I was obsessively checking my watch, telling myself to hold back and stick to the plan of straight 7:15's. I hit the first mile in 7:13, perfect. After that I was really struggling to hold that pace and constantly was trying to slow myself down, I hit the point where I wasn't even running relaxed because I was so focused on my pace. Mile 2 was 6:59, I was thinking a million and one thoughts during this, but still tried to back off to marathon pace. Then mile 3 hit, 6:51. I was not very good at this pacing thing on Sunday.

Mile 4 was 6:52. This is where I tell you, I used my God given right and changed my freaking mind. I had no reasons NOT to run this race harder. Boston is still 8 weeks out, my legs felt good, I had nothing stopping me from pushing myself. So at mile 4, I made the decision to go for it. I knew that this was a slightly long course, so a PR would be harder but not impossible.
Coming back after the first out & back. That is when I de-gloved, but ended up carrying them the rest of the race.
Anyways, once I decided to stop holding back my pace really didn't change all that much. Miles 5-10 were all around 6:50-6:54. I was happy, I was running controlled and relaxed and I was enjoying myself. Around mile 6 I passed the 5th place girl and made a goal to hold myself in that top 5 placing.

In my own little world.
Playing with my gloves.
The great thing about this course is the double out and back format, you get to see everyone so many times. Being able to high five My best friend as she comes back at me (in the lead none the less), and high five Carrie, and Heather, and Brittany and so many other runners I didn't even know. I was running a great pace and pushing but certainly enjoying every step.

 Mile 11-12 I was hitting the point where I was tired but not overly worn down. I was ready for the finish but knew that I still had some pushing to do. Mile 11 was 6:42 and 12 was 6:45 so I had picked it up a few seconds per mile.

When I hit the mile 12 marker I knew it was time to push more. I could see the 4th place girl a ways ahead of me (thanks for wearing neon pink!), and I wanted to close that gap as much as I could. One of the guys I was near tried passing me and held me off until about 12.5 when I had closed the gap with her to about 50 feet. He realized I was trying to catch her and gave me a thumbs up and cheered me on as I passed him. Mile 13 was 6:35.

I am focused, not angry. I swear.
That last part of the race I pushed so hard to catch her. I don't even know how to describe how bad I wanted to catch her and prove that I have that kick in me still. I caught her RIGHT AT THE LINE. And by right at the line I mean we TIED for 4th place by gun time, although I got her by 3 seconds on chip time.

According to my chip time of 1:30:22, I earned myself a shiny new 20 second PR. So much for not racing. But I will say this a million times over, no I didn't go into the race with a plan to PR but I also didn't accidentally PR. I made a conscious decision around mile 4 to stop holding myself back.

Obviously I am incredibly happy with this. A half marathon PR this early in the year, and when I certainly wasn't shooting for one. This makes me very excited to see what I can do at my next half in a month (without racing a 10k the day before like this time), and then again in May when I have my goal half for the year (Helloooooo sub 1:30). The other thing I am really happy about was how much fun I had, all while pushing and running hard.

#4 & #1 :)
One of the best parts was all of the people. Seeing your best friend lead the race, and eventually find out she won, her success makes me incredibly happy and proud of her. Can we also applaud her for raising over $2500 for Ophelia's Place!?!?!

Carrie & Myself
Being able to cheer on my friend Carrie while running and also being there at the finish after she got a hard earned PR!

Heather, Hollie & Myself
Cheering and spending time with Heather too, my word I love these girls.
Heather, Me, Hollie, Brittany
Also finally meeting Brittany IRL, and getting to go to fabulous brunch together.

Sunday really just was an amazing day. It reminded me why I love running, why I love racing, and just how awesome the people in my life are. It also told me that my half marathon PR is going to get crushed this year. 

Have you ever changed your race goal, mid-race?

Do your close friends live nearby? 

Monday, February 24, 2014

The Week of Training, Resting & 2 Races

I'll be honest when I say I was a little concerned how this week was going to go. Last week was a great week of running and biking and typically my body forces me to take it easier after weeks like that. I had to front load this week so I could give myself easy time Thursday/Friday in prep for busy weekend of racing/fun with friends.

PM: 3.1 Mile Treadmill run (8:29 pace),
60 Min. Bike (16.8 Miles) [15 Min w/u, 35 minutes (30 sec hard, 2 min easy), 10 min c/d]
25 Minutes Pilates
AM: 9.06 Mile TM Tempo [15 Min w/u, 5x5 min, 4x2.5min, 5x1min, 10 min c/d] (7:10 avg. pace)
PM: 3.1 Mile TM Recovery run (8:34 pace), 40 Minutes Strength Training
AM: 60 Minutes PT: Strength/Stability
PM: 7.5 Mile Progression run in SHORTS (7:30 pace)
AM: 1.55 Mile W/u (9:27 pace), 10k Race (6:44 pace), 2.09 Mile C/d (9:11 pace)
AM: 1.15 mile w/u (9:39 pace), Half Marathon Race (6:54 pace), 0.71 mile c/d (9:07 pace)

Total Running Miles: 47.6 Miles
Total Biking Miles: 16.8 Miles
Total Cross Training Time: 125 Minutes

Wednesday's Wet run- but in SHORTS!
Monday- Wednesday FLEW by. I got my workouts in, my work done and was really productive and hitting some solid training time. Not to mention the happy dance I did when I was able to run outside in shorts on Wednesday.

Thursday was when I started to feel the last few weeks. My alarm went off at 5:30 and I simply rolled over and told it NO. I was tired, I was physically ready for some relaxing and down time. It had been almost 2 weeks without a rest day(not smart on my part). So I slept in and went to work without doing a morning workout. I ended up repeating this on Friday, 2 rest days in a row was something I seriously needed as much as I didn't want to admit it.

The jam-packed race weekend was more than I could have hoped for. The best part was getting to spend so much time with Hollie, Heather, & Brittany. Although this weekend certainly left me tired, it also leaves me feeling very happy and blessed for the awesome people in my life. It also left me feeling happy that I don't have another race for 3 weeks.

The next few weeks gives me time to address some issues (nagging shin), as well as get some smart training in before my next race. I need to reevaluate some parts of my plan, so we will see what comes of it.

How was your weekend?

Did you race this weekend? 
(I know many did between small races, and Disney ones!)

Shin pain- give me your best stretch or remedy?

Friday, February 21, 2014

Weekend Prep: Friends, Fun and B2B Races

Well, I don't think I will have ANY issues sleeping after this weekend. Jam packed schedule, but oh lord am I SO excited for it. Remember the last time I got really excited? Well, it's kind of like that. I've been in a little bit of a 'funk' the last few days, so this weekend really is just what the doctor ordered!

For starters, tonight I will have a house guest! She's really fabulous and I haven't seen her since NOVEMBER! Here enters: Hollie :) I'm really excited to have my best friend back here for a few days, bring on ALL the shenanigans.

Tomorrow will be fun, as I have the last race of the Freezeroo Series. It's a 10k and the weather is looking decent (albeit windy!) so should be able to throw down a decent time. Freezeroo time also means I get to run with Laura & Joe too, not to mention Hollie will be running warm-up and cool-down miles with me. The weekend of runner friends ;)

Sunday, oh lordy this is where it gets a little cray. Hollie and I will be heading to Syracuse to run Lake Effect Half Marathon, but that's not the best part. We will be reunited with Heather!!! The 3 of us have not been together since NYC, and I haven't seen Heather since our epic California trip. I hope everyone running the race is ready for some screaming girls seeing each other! We also get to FINALLY meet Brit, which is going to be even more fun getting to know her in real life. Not to mention the fact that I know a few more people also running the race, it's going to be great.

Can't help but smile thinking about all of the awesome runners and people I get to be around this weekend. One of the many amazing things running has brought into my life is the crazy people I call my friends. :) 

Goals for the weekend...
Back to back races on a weekend can be interesting. I have done it before and know that I need to set realistic goals. I think this is going to feel a lot like Flower City weekend last year where I did a duathlon (5k Run-20M Bike-5k Run) on Saturday and Half Marathon on Sunday. 10k of running Saturday and 13.1 of running on Sunday, only difference this time is I don't have that 20 miles of biking. 

Like that weekend, I am making one a goal race and the other is not. This weekend I would like the 10k to be my 'harder' racing day, and Sunday not be all-out. Saturday's 10k is not a certified course and the RD is open about the fact that it's a little long (6.26) but I still think I have a chance at a good time.

 My goal for Sunday is to run the first half at marathon pace and then if I have more gas left in the tank, give it a push at the end. Although if Saturday ends up being an 'eh' day, don't be surprised if I push more on Sunday. I'll blame it on the adrenaline rush I get from racing. 

My first real goal race of the year isn't for another 3 weeks so I'm glad this will be a great weekend of workouts and hard runs. The 10k will be great training for my March goal race and the half will be good pacing race for Boston(58 days!!). Races can seriously be awesome workouts and training tools ;)

What are your weekend plans?

Tell me something awesome running has done for you?

Do you use races as hard workouts sometimes too?

Monday, February 17, 2014

Boston Training: On the Up-swing

So begins the upswing into marathon training for Boston. Last week I was really happy with how things were going and this week was even better as I was able to add biking back in as well as add some more running miles. I also ran outside twice which is a feat of it's own.
Goofy smile on a Snowy 18 mile run with Joe

PM: 60 minute Spin (17.2 miles)
PM: 8 mile treadmill run (7:57 pace)
 30 Minutes Strength Training
AM: 8 mile treadmill run (8:12 pace)
PM: 50 Minute Spin (15.1 miles)
AM: 9 Mile Treadmill Tempo Intervals
(7:35 Average pace- w/3.5 at sub-7)
PM: 5 Mile easy run outside (7:29 pace)
AM: 18 Mile Run outside with Joe (7:53 pace)
AM: 3 Mile Treadmill recovery run (8:36 pace),
45 Minutes Strength Training,
30 Minute Spin (8.6 Miles)

Total Running Miles: 51 Miles
Total Biking Miles: 41 Miles
Total Cross Training Time: 75 Minutes

I am definitely happy with how this week went, first 50+ mile running week since before CIM. Very glad to also see 40+ biking miles, I really need to be better this year about building my bike base before triathlon training really ramps up. I'm finally feeling like I am out of base mode for running, and starting to get closer to where I want to be right now with biking and strength training. I do know that I need to get my butt to the pool soon, maybe one of these days.

But with 9 weeks to go until Boston, my running is my priority right now. I'm looking forward to pushing the next few weeks and starting to get outside my comfort zone more. I don't know what I want out of Boston yet, but I do know that I want to get there as prepared as I can.

I was good with my goals this past week, as far as morning workouts and biking go, but missed a strength training workout. I think I was most proud of my morning workouts, Wednesday AND Thursday I had my running miles in all before work. Not to mention both weekend days I was up and working out relatively early.

My training this week is going to be a little heavier in the earlier days of the week seeing as I have jam packed weekend ahead (10k race Saturday, and Half marathon Sunday). Hopefully take it easier Thursday/Friday giving me slightly fresher legs before back to back races. I've done b2b races before, I'm still not sure what my goals will be for this weekend though.

Goals for this week:
1. 3 Strength training workouts- I can tell this has been helping!
2. 2 Classes (any kind)- I need to be better about this!
3. 4 Bike sessions or 3 bike + 1 swim. -Tri base building!

How was your Valentines Day?

What was your last pair of new shoes?
I'm really loving my new Kinvara's I broke in on Friday (2nd picture). This is pair #10 of the Kinvara's, obsessed might be a good word.

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Freezeroo 'Valentines' 8 Mile

This was actually my first ever 8 mile race, an odd distance but I really liked it. Was nice to run something different, a new challenge was my way of looking at it. That and, it was an automatic PR.

Luckily, the weather gods were a little nice this year(I have heard horror stories about this race in past). The sun was shining and it actually looked pretty outside. Granted it was still single digit temps with below zero wind chill, it could have been worse.

You can see everyone's breath, and also me looking like a twerp fixing my hair.
I did my warm-up with Joe and Laura and meandered around until start time trying to stay loose and warm.

First 3 miles I held comfortable relaxed pace, trying to brace myself for whatever the rest of the race might hold. I passed 3 girls in the first 3 miles which put me in 4th place.

When we got to the 'Edgemere section' (mile 4-5) the left side of my body was numb. You have water on both sides of you and no protection from the crosswind. I kept my head down and just tried to hold pace.

Once turning off of Edgemere, that cross wind turned into a lovely headwind (a cold one at that). The front side of me was numb, I tried not to look at my watch during this section. Granted I hadn't really slowed down, I felt like it with the wind. There weren't many people around me at this point so mentally I just kept telling myself to 'stay focused'.

The last mile was long and straight and slightly uphill but I was around more people which was good. I was still feeling decent and was able to pass a few more people including one more female to put me in 3rd.
Last stretch before final turn. I like this one and only am posting it because I look like I'm going to run into a pole, and well.. that would have been funny. (you know you would have laughed!)
About 1/4 miles until the finish I saw a girl ahead of me, I tried pushing and managed to close the gap quite a bit but she held me off. I'm still happy with 3rd place obviously, but had I passed her I technically would have won. The winner wasn't a part of the series, so beating the 2nd place girl(who is in the series) would have given me a win and extra points. I digress.

I finished in 55:18 which I was really pleased with. I know that I am capable of more, but considering the cold and the fact that I am not at my peak yet it's pretty damn good for me. I also keep reminding myself that I am using the Freezeroo series races as workouts, and come spring that is when the 'real races' and PR's will start for me.

After the race, I knew I wanted to get more miles in for the day to make it my 'long run'. I was a little ambitious(given the race and the weather conditions) and originally said 8 miles after. NO, I even knew that wasn't going to happen. So then I said OK lets do 4. When we got to the 2 mile I said, lets go to 2.5 which will give us 5(out & back). It was fine until turning around. I'm pretty sure Joe and Laura wanted to strangle me. We couldn't feel our legs or faces because of the cold, but we did it! Including warm-up, race and cool-down we got a little over 15 miles in for the day in that frigid weather!

My main thoughts on the race: Consistency and form. 
According to my Garmin my splits were 6:54, 7:03, 6:56, 6:46, 6:48, 6:55, 6:52, 6:48 which are pretty darn consistent even with wind. That made me happy, but so did my form. I have been working really hard on relaxing my form (I have bad habit of tensing up), as well as as strength training. I am seeing improvements because of this. As much as I detest the weather lately, I know that it has helped me mentally to push through and will make things even better come spring.

The next race in the series is in 2 weeks, Saturday February 22. It's a 10k race, hopefully I can pull off a good time and increase my standings within the series. I am also running Lake Effect Half marathon the following day. Basically I am torturing myself with back to back days of cold races, but what doesn't kill you makes you stronger right? At least I will have some awesome people to hang out with (ahem Heather, Hollie, Britt!) after for a beer.

Winter races, love or hate?

Who else is doing Lake Effect??

Monday, February 10, 2014

Boston Training: The Turning Point

Short and sweet version: I feel REALLY good after this week. Mentally and physically I am getting closer to where I would like to be. As much as I am 'over winter' I know that come spring I am really going to be ready to let loose.
Rocking a calf sleeve under capris (yes I'm a nerd), 10 mile tempo run (with 2x2 mile at HMP)
Treadmill & Olympics makes the time go by quicker, and definitely hit the hot tub a few times after workouts this week! 
Quick Run-Down
Monday: 4.5 Mile Treadmill Run (8:21 pace)
Tuesday: 10 Mile Tempo Run Outside [2x2 miles], 20 Minutes Core Work
Wednesday: 55 Minutes Strength Training/Physical Therapy with Trainer
Thursday: 7.07 Treadmill miles (8:30 pace)
Friday: REST
Saturday: 2.37 mile warm-up (8:27 pace), 8 mile race (6:53 pace), 5 mile cool-down (8:39 pace)
Sunday: 7.07 Treadmill miles (8:30 pace), 45 Minutes Strength training

Total Running Miles: 44.1 miles
Total Cross training time: 120 Minutes

I could sit here and analyze every little piece of this week, but it all comes down to the fact that this was my turning point. Yes, I have technically been 'training' for Boston for a few weeks now. This week was different, especially coming off some less than stellar weeks (i.e. bad race, fall down stairs, etc.).

44 miles isn't huge, and it's not where I was planning on being at this point in training. But those were 44 SOLID training miles. I focused on hitting EASY paces when needed, cranking up and getting that 10 mile tempo run in (with 2x2 mile at half marathon pace), and nailing a race for that confidence boost. I finally don't feel ridiculously behind everyone else training for Boston. I started later than most to give myself down time after CIM, but it's slowly starting to come together.

This week I also started working with a trainer (who is also a Physical Therapist assistant), she is going to be a HUGE help for me. Yes I am a certified personal trainer, but NO I don't know everything and I am well aware I could benefit from this. I'm only going to be working with her a few sessions but she is helping me make a good routine to work on my weaknesses. Something I have come to realize is that I have incredibly weak ankles. There were multiple times in the fall I struggled with them, left ankle pain training for Wineglass, and right Achilles problems leading up to CIM. My right ankle, shin and Achilles have been giving my grief the last few weeks. I'm working really hard to build strength and stability because it's incredibly important(especially for injury prevention), and being diligent about icing/stretching/rolling.

As for my goals for the week, I hit some but missed the mark on others. I'm not overly disappointed about this, simply because I am finishing this week feeling happier and stronger. My sleep is starting to get a little better (read: I am finally averaging over 4 hours a night instead of the 2.5-3 hours I was getting). Hopefully this will continue to increase, which will make morning workouts MUCH more manageable. As for getting outside for my runs, I was outside twice and well....that's pretty darn good considering this weather!

Goals for this week...
1. 3 Morning workouts
2. 3 Non-running cardio sessions (Hopefully the bike, let's see if my tailbone cooperates)
3. 3 Strength Training workouts

This week is a really good week for me to push myself. After this past week being a solid training week, and knowing I don't have a race this week....perfect time to turn up the dial! No I am not cranking up my miles a ton, but by adding some miles, as well as adding biking back in (maybe swimming too?), and being good about doing my strength and stability training... I can get myself back on track to where I want to be.

I know we are ALL sick of winter,
 so tell me what you are most looking forward to about spring!

How is your training going?

Thursday, February 6, 2014

Life's Hard, Run Harder

I forgot to take my own picture before this post....
This is what it looks like though.
The other day I was folding laundry and found a shirt I thought that I had lost. It's a men's cut shirt that I had to have simply because I loved the slogan. Saucony's "Life's hard, run harder" shirt.

Good concept don't you think?

I have definitely been on a roller coaster lately with everything going on. I will admit that there have certainly been times recently where I let it get me down and where I felt defeated. I whined to some people, I threw myself a few pity parties, and then I kicked my own ass and told myself to GTF over it. There is nothing we can't accomplish as long as we are willing to work hard and fight for it.

While doing a little web browsing, I ended up on the BAA website (surprise,surprise). This isn't something new but the other day, the countdown said 75 days until The Boston Marathon. Wait, what?! Definitely opened my eyes as to how fast it is coming up.

Fact is, I know that  I need to push myself and I need to fight for the things that I want. No, things haven't exactly been easy lately, but life isn't easy and we certainly appreciate the things we work hard for much more than the 'easy things'. I'm training for the Boston-freaking-marathon, if that isn't motivation to get into gear I don't know what is. Even without Boston in the mix, I have some BIG goals this year and they wont be handed to me so it's time to focus.

It's time to work, and it's time to focus on the little things as well as the big things. It's time to start those longer runs, harder workouts, and time to really focus on taking care of myself. I am actively working on identifying and strengthening areas where I am weak, I know that down the road I will be grateful for this.

Life is hard, it doesn't always make throwing in a training schedule easy. Sometimes it makes us mentally test ourselves, and sometimes its the physical test. Sometimes we have to get creative because life schedules just make it difficult to do what we need to do.

 I also know that my version of "not easy" is something some people would pray for. There are so many people fighting harder battles right now than I ever will. People are fighting for the families, people are fighting for their lives, hell...people are overseas fighting for OUR lives. My trials and challenges are tiny in this big world. So it's time to stop worrying about things and simply run harder, so to speak.

Time to stop making excuses, run harder.

Running harder can mean whatever you want it to. Maybe it means adding more workouts that challenge you, maybe it means simply dedicating yourself to things more.  Maybe it means running faster or longer or maybe it means not running at all.

To me running harder right now means running smarter. Work harder on workouts, slowing down on 'easy days', paying attention to the little things (muscle stability, core work, stretching, foam rolling), and staying true to what I know works for me.

Maybe to you, running harder has nothing to do with running but more general aspects of life. Either way, it's time we run harder despite what life throws at us.

What does your version of 'Run Harder' Mean?

Monday, February 3, 2014

Boston Training: 2 Steps Back, 3 Steps Foward

Another week of training down for Boston. Not exactly the most ideal week, coming off of a tumble down the stairs last weekend but still a good week none the less. I was definitely cautious this week, didn't want to push things too soon. I don't want to turn my 'mishap' into anything bigger than it has been. Learning to compromise, and take a little time for yourself can definitely help when in these situations.

Monday: 60 Minutes Elliptical
Tuesday: 60 Minutes Elliptical
Wednesday: 2 Mile TM Test Run (7:53 Pace)
Thursday: 3.68 mile TM run (8:10 Pace), 35 Minutes Core & Strength Training
Friday: 3.84 Mile run outside (7:34 pace)
Saturday: 15.5 Mile run Outside(7:45 Pace)[in Vermont] 
Sunday: Rest/Drive home from VT

Total Running Miles: 25 Miles
Total Cross Training Time: 155 Minutes

While running in Vermont
I can honestly say I made the best of this week that I could. I actually had a week JUST like this while training for CIM. There was that week my ankle/achilles was REALLY bothering me and I had to switch a few runs for elliptical. So I knew that I COULD do this. Just a matter of making it happen.

The 'issues' kind of piled up this week (Lack of sleep, bumps and bruises from falling, shin pain, etc.) but I couldn't let that stop me from trying to train. Trading runs for the elliptical was a good compromise and allowed me to get aerobic training in without pounding on the joints. I also embraced the whole RICE theory this week, adding ibuprofen to that list as well. RICE theory (rest, ice, compression and elevation) might be simple...but it helps. I have also been making more time for stretching and rolling. If anything, the past few weeks were a good reminder that I need to take care of myself. I need to make sure I get to Hopkinton as prepared as possible, but also as healthy as possible.

I knew that part of my issue was that I NEED to get outside right now. I love the treadmill and think it can be a great training tool, but sometimes you really just need fresh air and open roads. Getting outside Friday for a few miles was just what the doctor ordered. Then being able to get 15.5 quality long run miles in while up in Vermont was the icing on the cake. The weather was gorgeous (30's!), the sun was shining, and there was so much to look at while running in new area. Not to mention spending time with friends in Vermont, a great reminder that laughter is the best medicine.

So regardless of how this week started (and how it could have gone), it ended pretty darn good and for that I am happy. Just like that training week in the fall, stepping back because of things going  on....really helped me move forward in the long run. Kind of a 2 steps back and 3 steps forward kind of thing.

Goals for this week 
1. Strength train at least 3 times
2. 3 Morning workouts
3. At least 3 runs outside, my mind and body need this.
Side goal: Do a bike test ride. I'm not sure my tailbone is quite ready for it, but I am willing to try. 

How was your weekend?

Ever have things just kind of pile up on you before? 

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