Friday, April 10, 2015

Taper time and how this training cycle went

Hi friends!
The Boston Marathon is less than 2 weeks away. I really am shocked at how fast this training cycle has gone so far. I feel like I just started training! However, I am really amazed at the training I put in and I am proud of what I have accomplished. Now we will just have to see what this training has done on race day!

In hindsight I wish I would have documented my training more often on this blog. It would have been fun to look back and see how I was feeling during the training. Between family, training, and work it just seemed that the blog got pushed on the back burner. Marathon training involves a big time commitment and I chose to spend my extra time focusing on other priorities.

Overall training went well. I am happy to say that I have been injury free and feel ready to race. My training over the past 14+ weeks has looked like this:
Monday: REST DAY
Tuesday: Speed work, usually intervals of various lengths
Wednesday:Middle long run (10-13 miles)
Thursday: Marathon Pace workout
Friday: Easy run
Saturday: Easy run
Sunday: Long run
Favorite spot on one of my running routes

The one thing I am grateful for is having a husband who is supportive of this dream of mine. There were many days that he watched the kids so I could run 3+ hours. He's pretty awesome!

Secondly, I am thankful to my parents. There were many mornings that my parents took time out of their day to help watch the kiddos so I could get some miles outside. It would have meant A LOT more treadmill miles without them.

Thirdly, I am thankful for an awesome running partner. It sure made the long runs easier! I don't know if I am going to be able to do long runs alone again! Plus, it was great to have someone else doing the same training. I definitely felt motivated to run on days I didn't want to run because I knew she was out their running her butt off too.

Lastly, I am thankful for the God given ability to be able to run and run fast. I feel blessed to have running in my life, it has helped me to realize I am capable of what I set my mind to. Sometimes it involves a lot of hard work, but when I am able to go out an pursue a dream it makes it worth it. Happiness really is found in the pursuit of a dream. Boston has been a dream of mine since I was running cross country in high school. Wat before I ever had run a marathon I knew I wanted to run Boston some day. I am giddy with excitement!

I am so excited to hit the streets of Boston and run the race I have been dreaming about.

Saturday, January 31, 2015

12 weeks to Boston

Just popping in for a training update! I had hoped to post weekly regarding this, but between being a wife, mom, working(I have been working extra hours since it is flu season), interviewing for graduate school, and training I have not had the time to sit down to write this blog.
It is exciting that Boston Marathon is 12 weeks away! I am even more excited that training is going so well! Yes, there have been runs that are not enjoyable. As in, while running I keeping thinking "can this just be done?" However, so many of the runs feel amazing!
I had found on the Boston Marathon page a training plan, after looking at the training plan I got excited! I looked over the workouts (especially the speed workouts), and felt they would help me get to where I need to be. There were a lot of marathon pace workouts, which I feel will help me the most. In my last training cycle for No Frills Marathon, there were not ANY marathon pace work. During that marathon, even though it was a PR, I did not feel I could get into the pace I wanted because I hadn't practiced the pace. I feel this is going to get me that 3:20:00 marathon (or faster).

Here's what last week looked like for training:
Most of this was on the treadmill due to my work schedule and the fact that it is really dark in the mornings!

Monday: Rest day
Tuesday: Treadmill miles: 2x(4x800m) at 10k pace (6:40min/mile) with 90 sec recovery. 5 min between each set. Total miles for the run was 9.03
Wednesday: Treadmill miles: 8.86 miles easy pace
Thursday: Treadmill miles: Tempo run 3x15 min at marathon pace (7:30ish min/mile) with 5 min recovery     between sets. 10 miles total
Friday: Treadmill miles, 6.02 easy pace
Saturday: Treadmill miles 6 miles easy pace
Sunday: Got the day off work! 21 miles outside! Last 4 miles run at marathon pace. This was a tough run, but good. My legs felt really strong! Total runner's high!

View on my 21 miler
Part of the reason I feel that my running has been going so well is that I have been doing strength training. I had a gait assessment done and the therapist said that I need to strengthen my hips. I guess having 4 babies made them a bit weak, who knew? So, I have been doing exercises to strengthen my hips. I have also been doing squats, lunges, and planks regularly. I believe it's the little things that are making the difference.

Hoping your week and month are going well! I do hope to get another post up next week.

Question of the post:
What are the little things you are doing to improve things in your life?

Tuesday, January 6, 2015

The first 3 weeks....

Hi friends! I hope that this post finds you well and that you had a great Christmas and New Years. Our household had a great Christmas even despite the fact that I worked Christmas. It was definitely a very challenging work week, but sometimes things happen that really make me thankful for what I have. I feel very blessed to have so many things. I am blessed to have a wonderful husband and kiddos.

As well as, a loving and supportive family. So many things to be thankful for that it would require a extremely long blog post and you are probably here to read about running, so.....
First day of training!

My first 3 weeks have been pretty much the same training wise. It looked a little something like this:
Monday: 5-7 miles easy
Tuesday: 7-10 miles with 3 miles at marathon pace (7:36min/mile)
Wednesday: 3-6 easy miles
Thursday: 7-10 miles 5x1000m at Marathon pace with 3:30 recovery in between
Friday: 3-6 miles easy
Saturday: Rest
Sunday: 8-12 miles
An early morning long run

My training has felt really good! I few of these days where outside since we have had such nice weather. A few on the treadmill, which has it's benefits.
I had a gait assessment done by a physical therapist, which I recommend to everyone! She had me run on a treadmill and she took video. I am not going to lie, it was really weird being video taped! I kept thinking do I look at the camera or not. I felt like Ricky Bobby in Talladega Nights "I don't know what to do with my hands." She showed me that my hips are weak, probably due to having 4 kiddos. She gave me some tips on how to improve my form and strengthen my hips. I am excited to see the benefits of this!
I am also working on my core strength and I incorporating some strength training into my routine. I am making sure I get rest and focusing on making sure I recover properly. By recovering properly I will be able to nail the hard workouts and get that 3:20:00 marathon!
Until next week!
What are your goals for 2015?

Monday, December 15, 2014

Day 1, Boston here I come!

Hello friends!
So THE day has arrived. Today marks the day that I start my 18 week marathon training plan! I am so excited to have this goal in front of me right now! I feel like a kid on Christmas morning!
So my goal for this training cycle is to be consistant with my training, strength train, get the proper nutrition (i.e. skip the candy), and take recovery seriously.
I am excited to run Boston. My goal is to not only run the marathon, but run it well. I want a PR. I realize this course is tougher than my previous marathon courses, but I feel up for the challenge!
I hope you guys follow along on this journey. I plan to give weekly updates of my training and hope to show you what it takes to train for the marathon I have dreamed of running!

Thursday, October 30, 2014

A bit late, but....

Just wanted to give a quick update that I am officially signed up for The Boston Marathon in April 2015! I am beyond thrilled and I am looking forward to this journey! More updates to come next week! Including several race recaps!

Saturday, September 13, 2014

No Frills Marathon Recap!

I write this post with a HUGE smile on my face. This was one of those races in which I still cannot stop smiling. I fell in love with the marathon all over again.

On August 31st, I ran the No Frills Marathon in Minoqua, Wisconsin. The course is a mostly flat course on the Bear Skin trail that goes from Nokomis, WI. to Minoqua. The race entry fee is $35 and you really get more than your money's worth with this race. First, the course itself was BEAUTIFUL! The first 6 miles are on some back roads near Nokomis. Once you get on the trail the scenery is true northern Wisconsin beauty. It is a tree lined trail with wooden bridges sporadically along the coarse. The bridges were one of my favorite parts, I loved hearing my feet pound the wooden planks, There are water stops along the coarse where you will find spectators cheering. Otherwise, you are running along the trail in quiet solitude. The final stretch to the finish line is an old wooden bridge and then you are in Minoqua. This is definitely a race I want to do every year.

My race went really well! I have to admit I went into this race really unsure of my training. I had pieced together my own training plan loosely based off the Grandma's marathon training plan(you can find it online on the website). It had higher mileage on it and very few rest days. The higher mileage seems to work for me, but I did add in a few rest days to give me recovery time. Looking back I realized I actually had a really good base built up due to the last one being cancelled.

The morning of the race Dan and I got up around 5am. I made my staple of an English muffin with PB&J. The start line was only about 20 minutes from the cabin, so we got there with plenty of time to spare. It was about 50 degrees and foggy, perfect weather in my opinion. I got my race bib and made a stop at the restroom, then headed to the start.
Pre-race selfie
Me and about 120 other runners took off when then gun went off. I took it easy the first few miles so I could get into a rhythm. I chatted with a few runners as I past them, pacing with them for a short while. I have read that being sure to fuel early is key to keep your energy up, so I took half a banana at mile 5 and Hammer Gel at mile 7 along with a big cup of water. After the mile 7 water stop there was not going to be another until almost mile 13, here I did wish I had carried some water with me. The rest of the miles clicked along, I was averaging about a 7:45 min/mile pace. I did question if I could hold the pace between mile 9 and 13. I took a Root beer GU gel at mile 13, and felt a HUGE boost. I felt strong the rest of the race. Took a Cherry Lime GU Gel around mile 20. Here I started to wonder when I would hit the wall? What was awesome, is that I never felt like I did! (Okay, at mile 25, I just wanted to be done, but told myself just a few more minutes). Finish time was 3:26:12, a new PR!
The Finish Line!

There were so many great things about this race! I will definitely be back for this one. One of the best things was seeing this guy at pretty much every water stop.
My parents brought the kids out. Seeing there smiling faces around mile 20 helped push me to the finish.It was so great having my parents there cheering as well. Reminded me of all those years of cross country.
Post race ice bath in the lake!
Next up: Recovery, a half marathon in October, and preparing for Boston!

Thursday, August 7, 2014

A long overdue update

So, I realize it has been 2 months since my last post. There have been so many times I thought to myself that I need to write a post. These thoughts tend to occur after a really good run, a race, a bad run, or just a fun day. So here are a few updates.
1. Enjoying the summer with the kiddos:

 2. Spending time with the hubs

 3. Ran a 5k race that lead to a PR of 20:31. I was first female, 3rd overall, and I won a pie!
 4. Ran a 10k with my cousin and her husband over July 4th. Not my best time, but was 5th female and 1st in my age group.
5. Training for No Frills Marathon!
6. Really, really enjoying morning summer runs. My treadmill is getting seriously neglected!
 7. Spending a lot of time at the cabin visiting with cousins, my parents, and relatives.

8. Taking a chemistry course in preparation for going back to school (more on this in another post).
 9. Being thankful. I feel truly blessed to be leading the life I am leading, but I am still striving to do new things and chase dreams

 10. Enjoying time with my sister when she came to visit.
I truly love summer! I can wear flip flops and soak in the sun. More posts will be coming as I prepare for this next marathon of mine. I also have decided that I am going to show more of what it takes to train for a marathon in general. Also, little things I am finding that you may enjoy as well.

How's your summer?

What's your favorite thing to do in the summer?