Monday, January 30, 2012

Hale Freezes Over 10k Recap

Today's Workout:  30 minutes weights, 8 miles running

And I'm back in the saddle!  Two months off of racing was incredibly nice and much, much needed but I must admit I was itching to see where my fitness was at.

I was pretty nervous going into this race for 3 reasons:

1.  I was wearing the PR pumpkin shirt!  You can read about the sisterhood of the traveling pumpkin shirt here.  Basically everyone that has worn the shirt thus far has PR'd and the pressure was definitely on me to keep the tradition alive.

2.  I trained specifically for this race.  I have never really trained for a short distance race before so the fact that I actually trained specifically for the distance was weighing heavily on my shoulders.

3.  I felt "rusty".  Having not raced in 2+ months I really did not know what I was capable of and if I had trained enough.  I had skipped a couple of hard workouts because of my shin set back and was afraid I didn't train enough.

The day before the race my friend Walter offered to come down and run with me and help me pace.  I was nervous about this but jumped at the opportunity.  We met up before the race and did a nice 3.5 mile warm up.  It was only 11 degrees out but the warm up felt pretty good.  I was afraid the cold temps would effect me but just tried not to think about it.  Walter and I talked about my plan and I told him I was just shooting for a PR and a sub-7 pace.

Me and Walter!  Walter is an awesome runner and did a great job at keeping me motivated.
The race was not chip timed so I started towards the front but behind the first row of fast runners.  I did not want to start out too fast and since there was a 5k mixed in I knew there would be quite a few runners in front of me.  Quite frankly placing or winning my AG did not matter to me that day.  I just wanted a PR!

Mile 1:  6:34  Crap!!  I felt like I was going much slower, I felt good, breathing was completely under control and I was chatting with runners along the way.  I told Walter I was not that fast and we better slow down.

Mile 2:  6:35  So much for slowing down.  This mile was all gradual downhill and I can pound out the downhill like a maniac.  Me and Walter chatted the entire time and I felt way too good to be true. Runners High?

Mile 3:  6:44 This mile still felt great and I was glad to see I had slowed it down a bit.  Walter and I chatted and he talked to me about strategy and surging.  There was a girl about 50 yards ahead of me and I wanted to keep her in sight.  I figured she was about the 3rd place female but really didn't know since the 10k/5k started out together.

Mile 4:  7:18  Shit hit the fan!  This mile was ALL gradual uphill and it suddenly occurred to my legs that I had ran 3 incredibly fast miles.

Mile 5:  7:35??  Seriously it got worse?  Yes indeed it did...sad but true!  There was a stretch of straight uphill for about .25mi and my breathing was literally out of control.  I wasn't wearing a HR monitor but if I would have been I'm thinking it would have registered at least 305!  I have never so badly wanted to walk or dnf in a race....but I kept on pushing. 

Mile 6:  7:09 just keep swimming, just keep swimming.  Gradual incline the entire way but I was in fight mode and hanging by a string or a limb or a pumpkin shirt something. ;)

Mile 7:  6:27  I had no kick in me but I looked up at the clock and it read 41:xx.  I think I closed my eyes and pushed as hard as I could in hopes of sub-42.  But I just did not have it in me.

Official Finish Time:  42:03/6:46 average pace
Garmin Time:  42:03/6:58 average pace  (The course was short and my garmin only registered 6.06 mi)

My gorgeous Momma was of course cheering for me at the finish.  My Dad was there too but I didn't get a picture.  My parents are so awesome to come out and support me.  Love them!

All PR credit goes to the incredibly sweaty pumpkin shirt!  :)
Initially I was incredibly upset about my time and my performance.  I have been working so hard on pacing and I felt like I had completely failed not only myself but Walter as well.  I wanted to cry, run away, or at least hide.  But my spirits were boosted when I learned that despite my completely horrible pacing I had somehow managed to finished 2nd overall female. I also set a new 10k PR and shaved 2 minutes off of my time on this course from last year. 

2nd place overall female.

Top three female 10k runners
Despite the obstacles I faced in this race overall it was a good experience.  The Hale Center puts on a great race and it is always just so fun to be around other runners who share my same passion for the sport.  Runners are awesome and regardless of how good or bad I run I always leave a race excited and eager to keep learning, keep training harder, and continue growing as an athlete. 

11 weeks of training left until the Boston Marathon!!

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Please Help me Win!!

Today's Workout:  push ups, planks, and worked shoulders.  8 miles running, 63 minutes

If you want to read more about my training since I haven't been updating the blog much you can click here.

Now onto more exciting things like how you can help me win a free race entrance. ;)  I entered a contest to win a free race entrance into the American Fork Canyon Half Marathon.  I ran this race last year and it is one of my very favorites.  You can read my re-cap from last year here.

Yes the American Fork Canyon is seriously this gorgeous.  Such an amazing view the entire race.
To help me win a free entrance all you have to do is click Here, "like" the American Fork Canyon Half Marathon & 5k facebook page, and then vote for my photo.  I already love you all forever but I will love you even more if you vote for me.  Voting goes until January 31st and you can vote each day!

This is the picture I submitted for the contest.  All credit to Julia who took the picture.

Now unless you are too old for facebook and hiding behind a remote like this crazy lady.

Seriously Mom your not hiding from anyone....get a facebook account already!

Or too young and cute for facebook like this kid

Please, please, click here and vote for me!!!

Do your parents have facebook?

My parents don't even have Internet at their house and that remote thing my Mom is hiding behind is only good for hiding because neither her or my Dad have the slightest clue how to work the thing.  In fact I think they only watch TV when the kids are over so someone can work the remote for them. ha!

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

So Random It's Ridiculous

Today's Workout:  25 minutes weights, 7.25 miles nice and easy

I keep sitting down to blog and all of the seemingly genius topics I create in my head seem to suddenly completely escape my memory.  Quite honestly I just haven't had anything inspiring or interesting to say lately.  My life has seriously been incredibly boring.

In an vast attempt to keep this little blog here a float and as my only journal here are a few things that have been consuming my mind and my time as of late.

Basketball.  All that the month of January really means to me is basketball.  And boy do I love my basketball.  Even though my personal WNBA hopes and dreams were shot to shit when my growth stunted at the ripe age of 7 I am the most dedicated fan you will find.  Girls basketball games twice a week, Jazz games 4-5 days a week, and mocking Metta "Worldpeace" in between.  Tis officially the season and as Hot Rod would say "you gotta love it, baby!"

Nutrition.  As I am shifting towards a cleaner diet I have become ridiculously obsessed with studying nutrition.  After being raised on a candy bar a day (anyone that knows my Mother can totally vouch for this) it has been incredibly exciting to learn more about nutrition and fueling properly for my training.  In 2011 I eliminated fast food from my diet, 2012 I am successfully eliminating chocolate candy, and I think by 2013 I will be ready to make the big jump and eliminate all processed foods.  It has seriously been amazing to me how much better I feel when I eat clean!

Yes I still have a blackberry, and it still takes crappy pictures.

Boston.  After watching the olympic trials on Saturday I started to get really excited about running the Boston marathon.  I know I am not an elite runner and have no career in marathoning but visualizing being apart of such an epic event keeps me day dreaming for hours.

Running Smart.  I have been sidelined with some minor calve/shin pain similar to this injury from the fall and it has reminded me to listen to my own advice and remember the bigger picture.  My workout tomorrow or my 10k next Saturday really don't matter.  What does matter is staying healthy for the bigger picture and the bigger picture for me is the Boston Marathon.  (Basically typing all this section just for me.  I am stubborn and telling others what to do proves to be much easier than doing it myself.)

And to make this post even more ridiculously random since there is absolutely no rhyme or rhythm to any of the content here is a quote I read today that I love.

 "You cannot control what happens to you, but you can control your attitude toward what happens to you, and in that, you will be mastering change rather than allowing it to master you."

Happy Wednesday Everyone!

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Training Changes & 2012 Race Schedule

Today's Workout:  4.2 mile recovery run nice and easy, 8:41 pace

I'm not sure that anyone who reads this blog really cares about how I train.  I am really just an average joe runner who is still wrapping my head around this whole running and training thing.  In 2011 I had absolutely no direction to my running.  I was naive.  I ran a ton, raced almost every weekend and just had a whole heck of a lot of fun.  

I do not regret any of it or any of the 27 races I participated in.  I had fun, met a ton of people, learned a lot, and got lucky a few times and even won a few age group awards.  But the truth is I trained like a complete idiot.  I over raced, over trained and am 100% lucky I did not get seriously injured.  After my complete blow-up at St. George marathon I realized I needed to change my approach to training.  I was training way too hard and needed to get back to basics and back to the simple enjoyment of running.

So with the help and direction of some great friends I gave my training a complete makeover.  Instead of running medium-hard every single day and burning myself out I am now focusing on just 2-3 hard workouts a week.  I am actually training specifically for races and logging way more easy miles.  During December I simply focused on building a solid base and running at a comfortable and maintainable pace which ended up being 8:05-8:20.  That pace is "natural" and maintainable to me.

Now that I am training for a 10k and building endurance for Boston my week looks something like this (pulled from last week):

Monday:  11.5 miles easy, 8:12 pace

Tuesday: Hill Workout, 10x60 second hill climbs, 8 miles 7:52 pace  

Wednesday:  8 miles easy, 8:00 pace

Thursday:  Tempo Workout, 20 minutes at HM pace, 8 miles, 7:37 pace  PM: 2 miles easy recovery, 8:24 pace

Friday: 7.2 miles easy, 8:20 pace

Saturday:  15.5 miles moderately hard but maintainable, 7:48 pace.  I had the opportunity to do this LR with some faster friends so I ended up pushing myself harder than I would on a normal LR.

Sunday:  4.2 miles easy recovery run, 8:41 pace   

64 miles total

I hope this run down didn't completely bore you to death but I thought it would be beneficial for me to explain that I have completely transformed the way I train.  The plan for 2012 will be 9 workouts a week with two 2 a days ideally the night after a hard workout.  I feel 100% better if I shake my legs out after a hard morning workout.

Now onto my 2012 race plans. 

January:  Hale Freezes Over 10k, January 29th

February:  Del Sol Ragnar, February 24-25th

March:  Shamrock half marathon, March 17th
Riverton half marathon, March 31st PACING

April:  5k time trial  (hoping to find a 5k close to home), April 7th
Boston Marathon, April 16th

May: ? I'm sure I'll add something

June:  Utah Valley Half Marathon, June 9th PACING
American Fork Half Marathon, June 29th

July:  Lavendar Days 5k, July 7th
Colorado Ragnar Relay

August:  Dash for Donation 5k
Utah Runner Girls Half Marathon

September:  Pocetello Marathon, Sept 1st
Payson Onion Days 10k
Layton Marathon, Sept 29th
(I will likely pick one of the two marathons)

October:  Halloween Half Marathon, October 27th

November:  Turkey Trot 5k

I think it's shaping up to be a pretty good year. :) 

If you made it this far I apologize for the overly analytical and insanely boring post.  I am really just trying road map my year and be more strategic and methodical about my training and racing in 2012.

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

You Have to Start to be Great

Today's Workout:  25 minutes weights, 8 miles running

Happy New Year!  I hope that your 2012 is off to a running start. :)  I have been sick the last few days and completely out of my normal routine so I feel like today is the official start of the New Year for me. 

Every single new day is really an opportunity to re-evaluate and start fresh right?  It doesn't necessarily have to be a new year, a life event, or even turning another year older.  Just start today whatever you want to change or accomplish in your life.  Don't wait until tomorrow or next year because if you never start you wont ever really know what your capable of.


I for one absolutely love setting goals.  They help give me focus, keep me motivated, and overall make me want to be a better person.  Each year my new year's resolution is the same:  to be the best me that I can be in every aspect of my life. 

To help get me there I think it is important to set SMART goals:

S:  Specific
M:  Measurable
A:  Achievable
R:  Relevant
T:  Timely

Obviously my number one goal in 2012 is to meet the man of my dreams and fall in love but I definitely have no SMART way of figuring that one out so I will move on to reality. ;)

1.  Sub 20 minute 5k.  It pains me just to write this because the 5k distance is something I am terrified of.  But the truth is I know I am capable of this goal and maybe sharing it is the only way I will actually achieve it.

2.  PR in the marathon.  I am planning a Spring and Fall marathon in 2012 and know I am capable of improving.  The marathon distance is my running weakness but it is also my favorite distance because it is the most challenging and I grow the most from training for it.

3.  Run 3,000 miles.  Yes this goal is huge but I most definitely think I can do it and I have a plan that mostly involves staying injury free.  3,000 miles is equal to 8 miles of running each day.

4.  Pace at least 2 races.  I am incredibly lucky to have the opportunity to work with the Utah Race Pacers and look forward to pacing at least 2-3 races in 2012.  Pacing is like teaching and it is incredibly beneficial and definitely makes me a smarter runner.

5.  Eat Clean.  In 2011 I completely cut fast food out of my diet (no french fries for an entire year) and in addition to keeping up with this goal in 2012 I would like to cut out all chocolate candy.  To a lot of you I am sure this seems incredibly extreme but I don't eat a lot of chocolate anyway and think it is incredibly realistic for me.  The truth is I feel 100% better when I eat clean and making simple changes helps me get to where I need to be.

6.  Have more fun.  I want to explore more, meet new people, and be more present in 2012.  As I get older time goes by faster and I hope I can truly live each day to the fullest.

I'm sure I may update/tweak this list as time moves forward but I think this is a good solid base to keep me focused and running forward in the new year.