Wednesday, February 22, 2017

LA Marathon Training Recap: Week 7

A little late...work and life have been a bit crazy. We found out my baby Nani has a torn/injured CCL (similar to human's ACL) and needed surgery.

Week 7 (February 6-12)

Monday: 1-hour cycle class and physical therapy exercises

Tuesday: 7 miles easy run with 4 x 100 meter strides/drills

Wednesday: 1/2 mile jog to gym; 1 hour cycle class; weight-lifting: squats, dead lifts, box jumps

Thursday: OMG. This was an alternating pace tempo run. This was a tough run. I was freaking out about it because...TEMPO. I'm still learning how to run a good tempo and this workout was a 5 mile tempo run in which the pace changed at each mile. I programmed my Garmin with the workout to not have to worry about remembering the paces, etc. 
Warm-up: 2 miles warm-up
1 mile @ 9:15/mi (Did it in 9:13/mi...okay, I can do this, this was a relatively easy mile.
1 mile @ 8:15/mi (8:14/mi...nailed it, but THANK YOU next mile is slower)
1 mile @ 8:55/mi (8:45/mi...that was uh, okay...how many more miles do I have?)
1 mile @ 8:25/mi (8:25/mi...YAY! almost done)
1 mile @ 8:15/mi (8:14/mi...In my delirium of embracing the uncomfortableness, I still thought I had another mile of the tempo left during this one...which made this mile hurt like hell and sucky. I was completely surprised when my watch beeped at me and told it was time to cool-down. It was the best present EVER. Okay, not really...but at that moment, I could have cried for joy.
1 mile cool-down

Friday: 30 minute easy run; Pilates; TRX class in the morning. In the evening, I taught a 1-hour cycle class

Saturday: 5.5 miles easy run on treadmill because of rain

Sunday: 15 mile long run. Dani, Nate (and baby Simon!) and I decided to run the Run Through Redlands 10k route twice to help me decide whether to race the 5k (my favorite distance) or the 10k (my nemesis distance). 

I don't know how to properly race 10k's (I've only run 2 and ran them in more of a 1/2 marathon pace instead of properly racing them). Instead of doing what I always do (race the 5k) and with the goal of becoming an overall stronger runner this year, I'm changing things up...But, the Run Through Redlands 10k has this horrible loooong steep hill in the middle. Actually, most of the course is slightly uphill. 

The first time we ran the course, I thought the hill was a nice challenge. Hard, but doable. The second time we ran the course, I thought Oh, hell NO. No way am I racing the 10k. 

Week 7 miles: 40.5 miles
2017 miles: 156.5 miles

Overall, it was a GREAT training week. I finally hit 40 miles, which is my comfort base level mileage and I rocked my key workout. 

Oh, and I registered for the 10k Race!!

Monday, February 6, 2017

LA Marathon Training Recap, Week 6

In retrospect, last week's DNF was the right move and it was also the turning point in my recovery and moving forward. It took about 2 months, but I finally feel recovered from CIM.  Also, I made a decision about the LA Marathon. I  was never planning on racing it--too close to CIM--but I do/did think I would be able to set a course PR. Instead, I've decided to pace my running partner and friend, Dani, to her first marathon
The Rose Bowl loop (5k) is fun!
finish. It took me a while to come to this decision because I wanted the course PR and I also wanted to start in one of the seeded corrals (instead of the general mass/chaos). I remembered my first marathon--Los Angeles--and how I ran it by myself and I had no friends or family to cheer me--I don't want anyone to experience that. I threw off my selfish desires and told Dani I would pace her. 
  • Monday: Barre Class + physical therapy exercises
  • Tuesday: 6 miles, easy + 4x100m strides and drills
  • Wednesday: Cycle class + weight-lifting (squats, deadlifts, box jumps)
    Running track in the dark
  • Thursday: Track Thursday! The local high school track has been closed a lot lately due to rain, but it was open this week. It was a fun work out. (5.1 miles total)
10 minute warm-up, 5 minutes at marathon pace (8:45/mi),1 min easy pace; 4 minutes at marathon pace (8:44/mi),1 min easy pace; 3 minutes at half-marathon pace (8:20/mi), 1 min easy pace; 2 minutes at 10k pace (7:50/mi), 1 min easy pace; 1 minute at 5k pace (7:15/mi), 1 min easy; 10 minute cool-down
                                
I told Coach Becki that I loved this workout and she said she's glad I like it because it is one of her staples in half-marathon/marathon build ups. 
  • Friday: Tabata (burpees), Pilates, TRX class
  • Saturday: 45-50 minutes easy run (5.4 miles). Started with Redlands Runegades for part of their route.
  • In front of the "Father of the Bride" house
  • Sunday: Long Run. Another Oiselle Volée LA Marathon training Flight Club run. This time in Pasadena. (13.8 miles)

I'm feeling good and had a solid week of training. I have my eyes and heart set on Chicago Marathon and will be using the Los Angeles Marathon as another step towards that goal. 

Week 6 Miles: 30.3 miles
2017 Miles: 116 miles

See the training link up on Eat Pray Run DC HERE. 

Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Los Angeles Marathon Training Recap, Week 5

Phoenix Flyers!
If I'm going to DNF (did not finish) a race, is there no better place to do it than surrounded by 80+ friends and teammates? This past weekend I traveled to Phoenix, AZ for a Oiselle Volée weekend filled with sunshine, friends and a bit of running. I also experienced my first unplanned DNF at the 2nd Annual Phoenix Women's 1/2 Marathon. *whomp, whomp*

Races don't always go by plan and though I felt ready at the start, about 7 miles into the race my {semi-injured} right leg started to bother me. I decided to be smart and cut the race short at 15k (9.3 miles) instead of finishing the half-marathon.  The race course passed the start/finish line at 15k and it made perfect sense to stop at that point. Even though I was surrounded by people who told me that I made a smart decision, I still feel guilty about quitting and feel like I should have just powered through to the end. 


Coach Becki reminded me that there was no expectation for the race. I wasn't trying to PR or race fast and "having the setback [in my training earlier in the month] made the race a lot more of a mental (and physical) challenge than it otherwise would have been". Both Coach and my husband reminded me of my long term goal: become a stronger runner and PR at the Chicago Marathon.

Otherwise, the weekend was fun and it was great catching up with friends and meeting other friends that I've only met online. There were a lot of different opportunities for meet-ups and I attended them all. Even with a DNF, all the #runlove and heart made the weekend worth it.


Phoenix roommates:
Idaho Birdcamp Reunion!

  • Monday: Cycle class + weight-lifting (upper body)
  • Tuesday: 6 miles, easy. I also did a new Jasyoga video before the run - How to Activate Your Glutes and one after my run -How to Kickstart Recovery.
  • Wednesday: Cycle class (am) + Physical Therapy appointment (pm). Oh, my glutes. We're working on building strength. 
  • Thursday: Race week workout-2 mile warm-up, 8 x 1 min @ half-marathon effort /2 minutes recovery, 1 mile cool-down. I did this on the treadmill because it was cold outside (SoCal wimp). 
  • Friday: Tabata using BOSU and weights. Drove to Phoenix, right leg was feeling stiff/sore.
  • Saturday: Oiselle shake out run. 4 miles. Leg felt good. 
  • Sunday: DNF race. The plan was to run the first 8 miles at a moderate pace (marathon effort) and after 8 if I was feeling great fly fast to the finish. My pacing for the race was spot-on. My first mile was a bit too fast (8:15/mile), but then I dialed in the pace to 8:3x's/mile for the remainder of race and finished my own personal 15k with an 8:31/mile average. My average heart rate was 153 beats per minute (i.e. maintained a moderate effort and didn't race too hard).
How do I feel now? My leg feels great/no pain. I think I've finally turned the corner and have recovered (both physically and mentally) from CIM. Today I had a good run and felt like my old runner self. I made a hard but smart decision on Sunday. I just need to keep reminding myself about my goal. Eye on the prize! The run police will not come after me if I don't finish a run (race, work out , whatever). Peace. 
10 feet before I DNF'd
See the training link up on Eat Pray Run DC HERE. (Very excited that I met Courtney in person this past weekend!)

Tuesday, January 24, 2017

Los Angeles Marathon Training Recap, Week 4

Marching with my Mom - 1/21/17
I've decided I definitely prefer training for a fall marathon. I'll take the summer heat and light over winter cold and dark. It's a lot easier to get dressed in the early morning for a pre-work run. And as far as I know, there is no added benefit to running in the cold as there is to running in the heat (See: Summer Training = Fast Fall Racing). On the other hand, I'm just happy that I get the opportunity to run on cold and rainy days--It seems like I turned the corner with my injury scare. :)


  • Monday: Cycle class + weight-training (lower body-PR'd squats and deadlift!) + box jumps; Physical therapy exercises
  • Tuesday: Speedwork on the elliptical (15 min w/u, 6 x 3 mins Hard/3 mins easy, 10 minutes c/d). The elliptical is where semi-injured runners go to die.
  • Wednesday: 45 min easy run. Yay, running! No pain.
  • Thursday: 30 min easy run + drills; Physical therapy exercises
  • Friday: 30 minute Tabata class: sandbell edition
  • Saturday: Women's March in Riverside, CA :) ; 40 min elliptical; Physical therapy exercises
  • Sunday: 2 hour long run (13.29 rainy miles)
Week 4 Miles: 21.1 miles
2017 Miles: 59.1 miles

(I'm a bit behind in the pursuit of my goal to run 2,017 miles in 2017 but I know as I get stronger and start building my base for the Chicago Marathon the miles will catch up.)

See the training link up on Eat Pray Run DC HERE.

Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Los Angeles Marathon Training Recap, Week 3

Sigh. Two steps forward, one step back. I ran two great marathons towards the end of a last year including lots of high-mileage weeks. Long story short:My body needs more recovery time. The good news is that my physical therapist cleared me to run and that I have a coach designing a conservative training cycle for the Los Angeles Marathon. Instead of running six times a week, I'm only running 3 times a week and cross-training for the rest. Instead of doing my speed workout on the track, streets or treadmill, I'm doing them on the spin bike or elliptical. 

I'm currently reading Mastering the Marathon, a book I received as a gift 3-4 years ago, but has been sitting in my book pile since then. Looking for a book to read, I flipped through it.  It's the perfect book for me right now because it's all about using cross-training in conjunction with running to train for the marathon. The premise is that the typical marathon training plan has you run 6 times a week. Three of these runs are your easy, aerobic building runs. If you don't have the time or your body can't handle running 6 times a week, you can exchange these 3 runs for cross-training instead. The other three runs are speed work, marathon pace runs (tempo) and long runs. Of these three, speed work is the least important and can also be done with cross-training. Long runs can be combo running/cross-training.

The author writes that you can run a good marathon with only 1 1/2 training runs a week! I know this is true(for me) because for my first marathon, I only ran once a week (Sunday long runs),filled all the rest of the days with spin classes and other aerobic activities, and finished with a decent time (4:25).

Now, mentally, I have to wrap my head around this plan and follow it! I keep reminding myself of the bigger picture: Chicago Marathon in the fall.


  • Monday: Cycle class +weight lifting (upper-body).
  • Tuesday: Speed work on the bike, 15 min warm-up; 3x7mins hard; 2x3mins harder; 10 minutes cool-down. Physical Therapy in the afternoon. My PT recognized the problem right away, my right side alignment it off. I was cleared to run and given new PT homework to be done every other day.
  • Wednesday: Cycle class + weight lifting (lower body). I PR'd my squat weight! After work, I went to the gym and ran easy for 3.5miles on the treadmill.
  • Thursday: Physical therapy homework
  • Friday: 30 minutes tabata (all bodyweight), 4.2 mile easy run, Pilates, TRX class
  • Saturday: 1 hour cycle class + physical therapy homework
  • Sunday: 45 minute run at the Santa Monica Pier with the Los Angeles area Oiselle Volée. I was also supposed to cycle or cross-train for an hour. That didn't happen. 
Week 3 Miles: 12.9 miles
2017 Miles: 38 miles

See the training link up on Eat Pray Run DC HERE.

Tuesday, January 10, 2017

Los Angeles Marathon Training Recap, Week 2

As of this writing, I'm on the edge of riding the injury train again. In the past, I would power through pain and get my runs in. This led to missing races and not being able to run and once able to run, building up my base again.

My big goal for the year is to run 3:48 at the Chicago Marathon in October. That's what I have my sight set on and that is what is guiding my decisions and reacting more on the conservative side. All my other races and runs are to help me become stronger, fitter and a better racer. I want to slowly build my base to 60 miles per week.

My goal for the LA Marathon, which is to run a strong race, has not changed. I believe I will be back to running by the end of this week. Coach Becki has provided me with cross-training work outs and alternatives to running.


  • Monday: Cycle class + glute exercises as a warm-up to weight-lifing. Squats, deadlifts and box jumps. Today marked 1-year of heavy lifting! This has all helped my running economy, power and strength. In the evening, I went to the gym with Paul and walked steep hills on the treadmill while he did his workout.
  • Tuesday: Workout Tuesday. The planned workout was a 2 mile warm-up + drills and strides; 4 x800m with 2 minute recovery + 1 x 1-mile; 1 mile cool-down. Dani joined me for the workout. We ran the 2 mile warm-up outside and then went into the gym to do the work-out on the treadmill. I hit the prescribed paces for the four 800's, but by the time I got to the 1x1-mile I had to work up to the prescribed pace (8:00/mi) so overall it was a little slow (8:16/mi). Coach Becki said that was great because it was within the range.
  • Wednesday: 5 miles easy run + drills and strides before weight-lifting. Shoulder press + chest press. My right leg at my old 2015 injury site started to bug me more. Earlier in the week it was 'just' twinges. 
  • Thursday: 30 minutes easy treadmill miles (3.5 miles) + yoga class.
  • Friday: 30 minute tabata class + 30 minutes easy run and drills/strides. At this point in the week, my right leg was bothering me enough that I decided not to run the rest of the week.
  • Saturday: The plan was to do a speed workout (5x1000m) and then do a long run on Sunday. This ended up being a rest day with no activity other than rolling and stretching.
  • Sunday: Plan was to run for 1hr40min. Instead I cross-trained on the elliptical, bike and steep hill walking on treadmill for an hour total.
Week 2 miles: 19.6 miles
2017 miles: 25 miles

I have appointments with my physical therapist and with my chiropractor for ART and I hope by this time next week I'm back to running! If not, I have my eyes set on my bigger goal and will make sure I do everything to NOT sabotage it.

See the training link up on Eat Pray Run DC HERE.





Tuesday, January 3, 2017

Los Angeles Marathon Training Recap, Week 1

In a couple months, I will join thousands other runners at Dodger Stadium for the Los Angeles Marathon. It will be my 6th race at that distance and my 3rd time running the full LA Marathon (<--read about my last time at this dance). Each week I will recap my training for it--the highs and lows. Although I've run a few marathons, this is my first time with a coach

  • Monday: Easy 3 miles to start the week and plan to warm-up for weight-lifting. Squats, deadlifts and box jumps--my favorite day! Jasyoga video: Booty Lock Mitigation (making pre-hab a priority this year, with rolling and/or yoga every day).
  • Tuesday: Workout Run. Easy 2 miles warm-up, followed by drills & 4X100 meter strides (adding drills and strides as prescribed by Coach Becki make me feel hardcore. Hee!). 4 x 2 minutes at 10k pace: 7:49,7:48, 7:42, 7:44. Easy 2 mile cool-down. Glute exercises for 20 minutes in the PM. 
  • Wednesday: Easy 4 miles warm-up for weight-lifting. Shoulder press, chest press and pull-ups. 
  • Thursday: Tempo Run. 2 mile warm-up, 3 miles at tempo (8:33,8:23,8:18), 2 mile cool-down. Jasyoga video: Hip Mobility Maintenance. 
  • Friday: 30 minutes tabata class, 1 hour Pilates, 1 hour TRX class. No running.
  • Saturday: Long Run. I moved my long run from Sunday because we went to a NYE party on Saturday and I did not want to run long on Sunday. Coach Becki said to run for 90 minutes and report back my distance and pace. I ended up running 10.1 miles at an average 8:54/mile--a bit too fast for a long run. I pushed myself because it was raining. And I was hungry. I earned my breakfast burrito. :)
  • Sunday: 30 minutes easy run (3.4 miles). We joined a gym (on Jan 1!) near our house. It's 1/2 mile jog or if you jaywalk, only a 1/4 mile from our front door. We went back in the evening to workout, so I tested out the treadmills and ran 2.1 bonus miles. 
Week 1 Miles: 35.6 miles
2017 Miles: 5.5 miles

(Not mentioned: my friend and training partner, Dani joins me when she can  and I spend 10-20 minutes before each run activating my glutes)

I joined Courtney of Eat Pray Run DC's Training Recap Link-up. Have fun reading other training journeys. :)