Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Last weeks recap

Okee dokee -- I really want to do this but not sure why I have so much trouble updating.  But I want record of the training down so I'll just do what I can.

Tuesday Tempo - (tuesday the 24th)
Planned -- 5 miles at mid-tempo pace which according to my book for me is 8.44  This is what I did:

Avg Pace

Seriously cool.  I think I did fantastic -- and was able to hold a fairly consistent pace which is hard for me.  Maybe there's something to this training thing.  

Track Interval Thursday - (the 26th)
Planned:  1200, 1000, 800, 600, 400, 200 with 200 rest intervals
Executed -- that was a hard run -- the 2.5 laps and the 2 laps just about did me in.  

Saturday Long Run:
Well, my book said 9 miles at HMP plus 20 secs -- that gets me in the low 9.30's.  However, running group was doing hill tempos so I wanted to go along with them just because it is more fun in a group.  So we went to Rancho -- ran 1 mile warm up -- did 4 miles of hill tempos back and forth up this 130ft incline.  Then did some small hill repeats.  Then one friend and I went and finished off with a 3 mile run -- of course mile one of that last three miler was roughly a 500ft climb which I had to walk about the last half.  But then we got a nice 2 miles back down.  

While I didn't get in 9 miles -- I got in lots of work out.  

Cross Training:

Life sucks -- whatcha gonna do.  

The funniest thing is that the Run Less/Run Faster program still has me running more miles than I was last year during most of the training.  And then certainly more than I've been running this past rainy winter.  So just shaping myself up and running with plan and a purpose is a good thing I believe.  That said, I had ....

Holiday Monday Run
Of course it wasn't cross training but it was more miles -- and we'll see how well that bodes for me with tonight's tempo.  But we had a fantastic run out at Sawyer Camp.  It is an out and back so we did 5 miles out to the top of the dam and then back in.  Was just going for an easy run and the times say easy but my body said hard.  

I'm fairly certain my body said hard because I'd spent Sunday afternoon from about 2pm until after 9pm sitting by my friends pool drinking wine.  Thus friend had fantastic run and I felt like I should have died.  But honestly, I don't feel bad today and that is improvement because until recently 10 mile runs were still knocking me out for a couple of days.  

Oh oh oh -- breakfast was at Bucks which is always good.  

Anyway, as I'm looking at this whole training season to build a nice base for next year's marathon training, I'll cut myself a little slack on the cross training.  But but but...I will get better.  Just need to sleep more so I'm not so exhausted.

Another problem for another time.  

So today is Tempo Tuesday -- we'll see how I do on tired legs.  The plan is one mile slow/easy, three at short temp which, if I remember correctly is 8.30ish for me, and then one easy mile.  As long as the stupid weather holds out (Rain and thunderstorms?  Really?)

That's it for last week.  

Wednesday, May 25, 2011


Note to self -- it really is getting warmer out so be sure to take water on your 5 mile neighborhood tempo runs.


I think one of the single hardest things for me to get with this running thing is to stay hydrated.  I just can't seem to do it.  And it impacts runs when I decide to run dehydrated.  Which is often.  Or like yesterday, I start out fine and then mess it up because I forgot to bring water.

My motto needs to be Drink More Water.  Maybe I should have that printed on a t-shirt or something.

Monday, May 23, 2011

Joplin, MO

Two years ago I didn't even know this place existed but the company I've worked for since about that time has a small facility there.  Our support team (the ones who support the product), some sales people, account managers and assorted admin.  Less than 50 people.  Thank goodness they've all been accounted for.  I know of one, however, who has lost his home.  I was told today how eerie it was and how one of my coworkers didn't want to leave her house as she was afraid they wouldn't let her back into the neighborhood.  We've all seen the pictures by now.  Unbelievable really.

I take back all my fussing about the california weather.  I just wish I could help.  

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Weekly update

It is 8pm and I'm all ready for bed.  What a weekend!  I'm exhausted but I guess that is what happens when one rolls in around 2.30 am.  Geeze.  But it was all fun and that is what counts.

Doing the happy dance for a 3 day weekend next weekend.

So I did all right this week with running:

Tempo -- called for 2 miles easy, 3 miles short tempo pace, 1 mile easy
  Check -- great run.  Was able to do a bit better than suggested times - not that I intended to but that is what happened

Intervals -- called for 6 x 800
  Check (mostly) -- group was doing 4 x 800 so I just did that.  One lap into my 5th repeat is when I almost took down that little one and it shook me up so I bagged it.  We were doing conditioning anyway so was just going to join the group.

Long -- 10 miles
  Check (mostly) -- modified.  Was trail running so targeted 8 and we did 7.5.  Was totally happy with that -- figure a 1000 ft elevation gain overall compensated for lack of miles.

I wish I could show the elevation changes from my garmin -- haven't quite figured out how to just that but it shows the ups and downs.

Also did one day of conditioning and one of XT -- not in a groove with the XT yet.  Usually like to do that early in the am but that is difficult to do after an evening run...still trying to work that one out.

Pretty good week running wise --  

Friday, May 20, 2011


I almost took down a 5 year old last night -- it would have been dramatic and neither one of us would have made it out unbruised but luckily I was able to avoid the crash and we both survived.

But..... why oh why oh why wasn't she being watched by her parents.  There were a bunch of kids last night at the track who were all over the place, even the two left lanes that are marked 'running'.  This is a very populated track but it all seems to work most of the time but one thing it is not is a play ground. I've never seen this many kids there before (and they were little ones) and honestly it is difficult enough to dodge the adults but the kids?  Impossible.  The are incredibly unpredictable.  

So as I was doing one of my fast laps and I was on one of the straights, this little one decides to race me...which was fine.  She kept up with me for half the straight pulling ahead of me and then runs right immediately in front of me and comes to a complete stop.  I actually scream (and I'm not a screamer) as I put my hand on her head to help me make the change to try to go around her while telling her never to stop in front of someone ...but I'm not sure she understood how close we were to a complete wipeout.  Duh, of course she didn't -- she was 5 (or thereabouts).  But it sure unnerved me.  It really isn't my goal to take down 5 year olds -- no matter how annoyed I am by them at the time.

Monday, May 16, 2011

What's up with the weather

Dear Weather Gods,

58* and rainy?  In May?  Really?  The high for the week maybe mid 60's?  I'm confused.  This is California remember?  Yeah yeah, NoCal, which I totally get isn't as warm as SoCal,.  But 58*?  In May?  As the high?  Eh, NO.

I put up with the crappy cold and wet winter.  I did training runs in the evenings at the track when it was freezing and dark.  I did long Saturday runs in the rain.  It is MAY.  This is CALIFORNIA.  I don't pay higher for everything to live here for rain and cold temps.

It is all your fault weather gods that I totally sucked with my running last weekend.  I did a 5k timed trial with my running girls and that was fine.  I was going to go run longer (training plan said 9 miles) but it was so cold and when they tempted me with breakfast in stead, how was I able to refuse because I was cold and miserable.  But if it had been nice out?  Who knows, I probably would have gone running instead.  And then yesterday -- yeesh.  Hail? Really?  I mean, what was the point of that?  I dressed in my running clothes but it was so windy and chilly and haily that I couldn't go.

I know you've got a lot of things on your plate right now....tornados....floods and the like.  So just put CA back on automatic and give me my perfect springtime weather.

Thanks bunches.


Training report for last week:

1 Tempo -- Five Mile Mid tempo pace (which I am thinking was 10k pace plus 15/20 secs) --
Check -- well mostly check.  I completely hit the wall at mile 4. Who hits the wall at four miles?  Someone who doesn't hydrate very well all the time, that's who.  I stopped with a killer headache and so thirsty I thought I was running for three days in the desert with no water.  Sigh.

1 Speed -- 400, 600, 800, 1200, 800, 600, 400 (400RI) --
Check -- boy was that exhausting.  But kept very good times on each of the laps so I was pleased.  Not sure what time I was supposed to attempt so I just attempted as fast as I could.

1 long run -- 9miles
Failure.  :(  See above letter to weather gods.

XT --
check -- pulled out the ole turbo jam kickboxing DVDs.  Those are fun and really help with the abs and arms.  Also did 30 mins yoga.

Not a terribly exciting or terrific week but there you go.  Week two down.      

Sunday, May 15, 2011

The real Kentucky Derby post (well sort of...)

Silly letter to the boy about my trip -- thought I'd just put it out here for a keepsake.  

Thursday, May 12, 2011


I know you’ve been waiting for it – probably desperately.  You want it and now I’m about to give it to you.  A detailed account of my trip to KY and the Derby.
Happy Dance.

The week started out crazy – I had to work until 9pm on Monday.  9!!!  That NEVER happens to me and it was for incredibly silly reasons but there you go.  I got your phone call on my way home which greatly amused me and I was happy to hear you made it.  Tuesday was a much better work day but I had tons to get done Tuesday night and Wednesday morning.  It all got done and the cab picked me up at 10.30 for my 11.55 flight.  I was carrying my hat box so felt I might need more time.  I think really I’m just a bit more neurotic the older I get.  That happens you know. 

So my flights out were from SJC to LAX where we just let some folks off and picked up some others.  Then we went on to Chicago crossing over the Rockies were I took this picture:

This is a slightly different picture than I already sent you.  Just saying.

I got to get out of the plane in Chicago and walk across the entire airport.  I managed to grab dinner along the way which was was good because I was starving.  This time getting on the plane there were tons of us women folk with hat boxes or hats in bags.  I felt so happy to be in on the secret.

The flight into Louisville was uneventful and Uncle C picked me up at the airport and we go home and I get to show Aunt C my hats and then we all go to bed.
Thursday was mellow – the kids woke up and I tried to sleep.  They are some crazy kids(crazy in a good way) and totally reminded me of you and Alana. 

Here’s Missy C on her new bike rocking her kitty helmet.  I think Alana might ride her bike more if she had a kitty helmet.

And here’s a retro pic of Boy C with his sweet little boy look. 

We had to do some shopping as I needed a sweater for Saturday (expected rain) and I needed some flat shoes (to use for actual walking – I still wore my high shoes to look cute).  And then Uncle C reminded us it was Cinco de Mayo so we went to eat mexican and have margaritas for lunch.  Then we came home and had more.  And more.  And dinner and more.  Then we went on a walk with the kids and again with the déjà vu from when you and Alana were little.  They really are very sweet kids and apparently Missy C took to me quicker than she ever takes to anyone.  So I got to be the handholder on the walk.  Nice.
Friday dawns to Boy C running across their house.  Their spare room is downstairs and their little guy likes to run from their kitchen, through the dining room into the living room.  Nice straight shot.  Right above their spare downstairs room.  Then he goes back and forth and back and forth.  Amazing how much noice one little boy can make.  Like a little elephant.

Friday is Oaks Day  -- which I’m sure has a meaning but I just think of it as day before Derby day.  Aunt C went with me that day.  This is how cute we looked before we left:

I look a bit haggard here. Not entirely sure why since the day hadn’t even started.    

And this is just me looking a bit better than above:

And this is me and the cute little guy who happens to be freaking adorable:

Oaks Day was breast cancer awareness day so everyone was supposed to wear pink.  I didn’t know that in time hence I’m in purple but oh well.  Plenty of people did get the memo:

The tractors got the memo:

 Even the jockeys (or trainers perhaps) got the memo:

This man apparently got the memo:

But no memo for us. 

We, however, survived.  Mint Juleps will make you survive anything.  (Mint Julep: An alcoholic drink made of bourbon whiskey, sugar, crushed mint leaves, and shaved ice.)

After betting on the main race of the day (and loosing) we were done (we were there all day, the main race wasn’t until late in the day).  Unfortunately we never hooked up with my friends that night.  After waiting in the taxi line from hell (no pictures unfortunately) Aunt C and I ended up downtown eating dinner and then we hooked up with her tattoo artist.  He wanted nothing to do with the craziness of where we are so he directed us to a bar out of the way of the fray where we danced and had entirely too much fun and didn’t make it home until 2 am.  We might have been a little loud when we came in but that’s what having fun will do for you.

The little elephant woke up crying too early but luckily for me, I was exhausted so I managed to grab a bit more sleep.  But I wasn’t feeling so well and I had to do it all over again with Uncle C and I knew he’d not be happy if I wasn’t my happy party girl self.  HA.  So I bucked up and just took it slow with the food and coffee and turned from toad into this:

I put the above picture as my profile picture on FB but Alana doesn’t like it.  I think because the hat is so big.  Sort of makes me look all weird I think.  She wants me to change to the one of me and Boy C. 

And this is me and my date for the day:

Basically Derby Day is the big event but the crowd looked pretty much the same, minus pink.

And this is Chris and me – I took it on my phone and look like I’ve got three chins.  I’m still not skilled at taking a self portrait on an iphone:

I think Chris calls this his presidential look.  I just look scary.  No mint juleps for us that day.  My stomach just couldn’t handle it.  But we were having fun, watching the crowd and deciding which horse to place our bets on.  Or rather bet. 

And before we knew it, it was time for the actual Derby race.  Here I am with the starting gate in the background.  Where we sat wasn’t too fancy but it was right where the race started so that is sort of cool.  Don’t mind the granny look with the sweater closed like that.  And this pic seems to me more me and less starting gate but you get the general idea.

Here’s the gate keepers guarding the gates. 

Apparently I don’t have a picture of the horses leaving the gate.  I could have sworn I did.  I probably have it in video which unfortunately I can’t attach here. 

That’s close to it.  We did hook up with my friends this day and as soon as the race ended (we didn’t win) we were off and they had a really cool parking spot so we went downtown to wait for our friends and have dinner.

Later in the night this area was crowded but there was a DJ so we danced and danced and danced and had a fun time.  I rallied well.  Chris was even pleased. 

Then Sunday I had to head back home on an 8am flight which caused me to be up at 5am which was 2am CA time.  That sucked.  My flight back was from Louisville to Phoenix where we let off some people, picked up some other.  Then on to San Diego where you were so close but I couldn’t hug you.  I had a silly plane change that required a gate change that had me go back through security before I was off to SJC and home.  Dad and Alana picked me up and I went home to nap.
And that, my dearest is my Kentucky Derby weekend. 

I hope you enjoyed the play by play.  This is now a 15 page letter and will require special postage.  But you know what, I’m gonna send it – hopefully it will distract you enough from you fun.  And pictures can’t be all that bad. Plus it was a good way for me to write up the trip even if I went into way too much silliness only for your benefit. (you know, so you could roll your eyes and all that).

Love you bunches – hang in there.  Stay positive. You are a rock star and doing well.  You can do this thing called boot camp and you can do it well.  Don’t let the crazies get you down. 

I LOVE YOU!!!! Mom.  xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Overall running goals

Alrighty then, so much for 'tomorrow'.  That was Sunday and this is Wednesday and I got completely slammed at work. I still will put together a Kentucky Derby post -- but first need to collect all the pictures from various people.  Also, I need to get daughter to turn movie into a picture.  Silly iPhone camera -- takes movies when I think it should be taking pictures.  But daughter is mistress of fixing that.  Thank god.

Anyway, thus begins the first week of 1/2 marathon training.  Well, actually, last week began the first week of 1/2 marathon training but I blew it off in favor of gambling and alcohol.

I do have my priorities.

So, I'm putting into place a modified version of the Run Less/Run Faster 1/2 marathon training plan.  I say modified, because I'm also matching it up against a training plan a friend has put together and since we run together, a lot, it makes sense to modify mine.  Simple enough as her's is a 3/4 day a week running plan with cross training in it along with speed training, tempo runs and all that. Very similar to the run less/run faster approach.  We might differ on the long runs but we'll just work all that out as we get to it.

Races are the  Disneyland Half Marathon on Sept 4th and then the  California Wine Country Marathon and Half on Oct 16th.  Then I think the Las Vegas Rock n Roll Half would be seriously fun too  -- that whole running at night on the strip thing.  But that one is open as of yet.

I've run two half marathons in my one year running career.  The first one was 1.59.02 and the second was 2.02.58.  So I believe it is fairly safe to say I'm a two hour half marathoner.  I'm pretty pleased with that considering I've not been the most fit person over my life and I didn't start running until I was less young.  However, being that I AM competitive, I've decided not to stick with what I can do but try to bring my time down to 1.45 (1.50 would make me happy as well).  Then I would feel like a rock star.  Or at least a fairly good runner.

Also, the first marathon will be in fall of 2012 -- and damn, the thought of running for much more than 4 hours makes me want to cry so I figure I've got to work on bringing my half time down so I'll be ready for the full training next summer and a goal to finish in as close to the 4 hour mark as reasonably possible.

That's my logic anyway.

So in order to keep myself honest, I'll probably do the weekly goal update thing.  I'm sure I'll get lazy and miss but maybe not.

And then, because apparently I'm getting all my thoughts down at once to make this a killer long post, I've got a sub goal to learn to swim.  I mean, sure, I can tread water and won't sink, but I've never learned to do the correct strokes.  And suddenly with the run less/run faster stuff I need some cross training and he recommends swimming and biking. Also, I've got a friend with a desire to do a triathlon, somehow learning to swim and doing a triathlon became something I will accomplish as well.  I'm not entirely sure how that happened but I'm mostly positive there was wine involved.

Then to top it all off, my boy was doing a bunch of swimming right before he went off to boot camp -- and he kept trying to get me to go with him (knowing I had a triathlon in my future -- but let me be clear, this will be a baby triathlon ).  I never managed it but it a fit of sentimental maternal feelings on the eve of his departure, I promised I'd swim with him when he got back.  Goddamn kids.

I have until August before that will be cashed in on.

I think that's all for now.

Sunday, May 08, 2011

Kentucky Derby

No running last week because I was at the Kentucky Derby.

I might have had a bit too much fun.

Pictures tomorrow and then training goals.  I want to get fast.

Might have to have a little less fun.

Tuesday, May 03, 2011

Big Sur Relay

First relay and it was actually kinda fun.  Probably because it was a part of the Big Sur International Marathon event (marathon, relay on marathon course, 21 miler, 10.6 miler, 9 miler and a fun run).  I walked the 21 miler last year and was reminded this year on how fantastic of an event this is.  Organized well (mostly!!), tons of fun and you can't beat it for beauty.

Pretty hard to hate this run.

The day started early.  There are about 10,000 participants converging on a rather small area.  The logistics involved in this effort are impressive.  This year was a bit different.  Normally the course is from Big Sur to Carmel -- however a section of Hwy 1 near Big Sur fell into the ocean a few months back.  Major bummer.  So the BSMI organizers sucked it up and had us do an out and back course.

I'm sure it was a nightmare for the organizers but they pulled it off pretty well (with one exception -- I'll get to in a bit).

Anyway, the day started early.  I had to be up at 3am to be at the bus by 4am for a 4.15 leave time.  For a variety of reasons, I got a terrible nights sleep and had been awake since 2am already so I managed to get out of bed at 3 and did what I usually don't do before a race, drink coffee (figured with a 6.45am start, I'd have plenty of time for the effects to diminish).  I didn't plan well on eating but I did manage a power bar along with my coffee and was off to the bus by 4am though we ended up not leaving until about 4.35.  At least I was warm on the bus and I knew where we were going would be cold.

And it was!  We were dropped off about 5am at the start line (I was running legs 1 and 2).  5am for a 6.45 start.  WAH.  It was freezing and I did have sweats but was in no way even close enough to warm. Temp was 46 and the wind was deadly.  As luck would have it, there was a 24 hour Safeway located in the parking lot and a lot of us used that for shelter.

It got more crowded as the morning went on -- there were people sitting up and down each isle.  As my teammates were bussed to the relay hand off areas, I was alone until a friend who was doing the 21miler texted me that she was in Safeway and where was I?  So I wondered around and found her in the produce department which was good for a laugh.  We all lasted until the sheriff came on the loud speaker and shooed most of us out.  It was 45 mins before start time so we had to leave anyway to do last minute potty stops, figure out where to go, strip down and make way to start.

And we were finally off.  We were a 4 person team on a 5 legged relay and I got nominated to run 2 legs.  Without looking at the course elevations, I opted for legs 1 and 2 as that was the fewest miles of any of the legs combined.  But when we picked up our packets and saw the course elevation, I was regretting my decision.  The normal course is a flat first 10 miles, a 2 mile hill and then rolling hills for the remainder of the course with a finish of mostly downhills on the last 4 miles.  But since it was an out and back, I managed to commit myself to running probably two of the three hardest legs of the course.  My friends would have totally let me switch legs but then I got all indecisive and couldn't decide which two I should run.  So I finally just shut up and kept with legs 1 and 2.

The first four miles were just flat out killer -- there were breaks but they didn't seem to last very long. I knew if I could just make it to mile 4 I was golden.  And I was, though I'd have been very happy to pass the baton at that point.  Leg 2 wasn't as bad but I was running it on worn out legs so I didn't do as well as I probably could have otherwise.  I was so happy when I saw the relay hand off area approaching and almost hugged my teammate but she was totally not interested in a sweaty hugs and she was a bit concerned about her own run so poof she was gone.

I ran the hilly 9 miles (total elevation gain of 874ft) in 1.29.07 for a 9.39 pace.  I was happy.  No significant hill training, nor training in general really, ran 4 miles the day before (usually I don't run two days in a row -- wimp), indulged in new pre race meal of fish and chips and beer, and pretty much didn't sleep the night before.

Maybe I'm on to something.
My teammates were super awesome so for four girls who set out to run a five legged relay for fun, we ended up placing 15/60 for women's teams and 91/300 overall.  I like those standings.  And thing of what we could accomplish if we'd actually hill train (which we do -- just haven't started yet).

And really, this was what it looked like:

The day did not suck.

I had fun with the relay overall though I'm not sure I'd do one again.  Oh heck, I'll do one again -- I love being part of a team and I love the girls I run with.  The good thing about this course is that the handoff points for 2 and 5 were together on opposite sides of the road and the handoff points for 3 and 4 were the same.  So when I handed off to leg 3 girl, leg 4 girl and I hung out waiting for #3 to show back up (and we are so good with our times, she showed up right on schedule).  Then #3 and I hung out waiting for the bus to take us back.  And this where the revised course failed -- because they had to close down hwy 1 to runners on both sides, there was no room for busses.  So we had to wait until everyone had passed before they'd start sending us back. That was not so fun and unfortunately we missed our #5 run it in.  The other thing I didn't like was that I just didn't get enough time on the course -- and I had the most.  We each spent a lot of standing around.

But at some point, we all ended up here....

And that makes it all worth while.