Tuesday, August 30, 2016

{week 5} One Minute. One.

Head Up; Wings Out
The Santa Rosa Half-Marathon.

First of all, I would like to congratulate Dani, my training partner, on her massive PR. She tucked in and did not give up!

What can I say? My nutrition was spot-on. I've been working on dialing my nutrition requirements and I think I have something in place that will help me tremendously during a marathon. I ate enough the day before, ate enough race morning and ate a gel every 5 miles. I've raced enough to know when my nutrition is off and it wasn't for this. My next test for nutrition is the St. George Marathon on October 1st (1 month + 1 day from today!). I'm using the race as a  training run for CIM (to work on pace).
How I recover

ONE MINUTE. I ran exactly one minute slower than my half-marathon PR. My official time-->1:48:38, my third fastest half-marathon. I'm kicking myself because it was all mental. I gave up too easy; I gave myself permission to slow-down. I stopped to re-tie/tighten my shoes even though I didn't really need to. After the race, my legs felt fine. Not tired. Not like I left it all on the course. Ugh. Deep breaths and move-on. Lesson learned. I've always known I need to work on my mental game. Now I KNOW I do. 
How I recover (part 2)

On the plus side, I also know I still have it in me to go fast (for me). Other than my performance, I loved the organization, the size, the post-race beer fest (Ready, Set, Growl). Santa Rosa is a fun town, home to good beer, wine and coffee. Home to great post-race breakfast burritos from El Patio (where you can get brown rice and steamed vegetables with your burrito) and Hatha yoga.

Moving On: Week 5 (13 weeks until CIM)

Monday, August 29: Rest 
Tuesday, August 30: 9 mile, general aerobic run
Wednesday, August 31: 5 miles, recovery run
Thursday, September 1: 10 miles, general aerobic run
Friday, September 2: Rest/XT
Saturday, September 3: 5 miles, recovery run
Sunday, September 4: 16 miles with 10 miles at marathon pace

On the plus side, I now have updated training pace ranges:
Easy Runs: 8:40-9:40 min/mile
Long Runs: 8:42-10:02 min/mile
Recovery Runs: 9:47-10:30 min/mile

How do you move on from races that don't go according to plan?

Hi-jinks with the Redlands Runegades at the Beer Fest

Monday, August 22, 2016

{week 4} the week I take it easy (kinda)

Ragnar Trail Appalachians was a blast!

Just a quick note...I'm currently in week 4 of training for CIM, but I am also racing the Santa Rosa 1/2 Marathon this weekend. I feel like I can race well, so I'm not following my training plan this week. 

I'll be back next week with more...

Monday, August 8, 2016

{week 2} Or the week that my schedule gets Ragnar'd

Nani is a great recovery run partner.
Lots of stopping!
So far, so good. My first week of training for CIM went well. I ran all my scheduled runs and I rested (well, didn't run) on all my scheduled rest days. This week I'm racing my 6th Ragnar Relay Race. My first Ragnar Trail. More on that below. 

Week 1 Recap

Goal Mileage: 33 miles

Monday, August 1: REST/XT Day - 30 minutes cycle class + weight-lifting

Tuesday, August 2: 8 miles with 4 miles at lactate threshold (8:02-8:31/mile)
Okay. So, 4 miles at tempo. Still trying to learn "comfortably hard" tempo pace and go by feel.

The 4 miles at tempo: 7:29; 7:39; 7:39; 7:40. 

However when you look at Grade Adjusted Pace (GAP): 8:27; 8:11; 8:09: 7:42, I was pretty much spot on my pace goals. 9.5 miles (8:34/mile avg)

Wednesday, August 3: REST/XT Day - 30 minutes cycle class + weight-lifting

Thursday, August 4: 9 miles, general aerobic (9:10-10:22/mile). I woke up crazy early to meet up with the Runegades for a 4:30 am mid-week longish run. 10.2 miles (9:12/mile avg)

Friday, August 5: REST/XT Day - 30 minutes Tabata

Saturday, August 6: 4 miles, recovery (9:10-10:22/mile). Recovery run with Nani (#dogmiles). Got to sleep in and run a little later in the morning (8 am) because it cooled down a bit from the intense heat levels we've been subjected to this summer. 4.8 miles (9:33/mile avg)

Sunday, August 7: 12 miles, medium-long (8:31-10:22/mile). The plan was to take this run easy, try to average 9:30/mile pace. My legs had a mind of their own and I think because I know this route very well, I went a *bit* faster than planned. 13.0 miles (8:39/mile average)
For Week 2 of Advanced Marathoning, I'm scheduled to run a 13 mile run with last eight at goal marathon pace. In my head I'm counting this run as that one.

Total Week 1 Mileage: 37.5 miles

Ragnar'd Schedule (Week 2: 16 weeks until CIM)

Goal Mileage: 36 miles

Because I'm running Ragnar Trail Appalachians - WV, I'm rearranging the Advanced Marathoning plan to fit the race.

Monday, August 8: REST/XT Day
Tuesday, August 9: 8 miles + speed (10 x 100 meter strides at end)
Wednesday, August 10: 5 miles, recovery
Thursday, August 11: REST Day - Fly to Pittsburgh, drive to campsite in West Virginia.
Friday, August 12: Ragnar Trail, 1st Leg (3.5 miles) & 2nd Leg (6.5 miles)
Saturday, August 13: Ragnar Trail, 3rd Leg (4.6 miles)
Sunday, August 14: 8-10 miles or whatever I need to hit mileage goal this week as everybody knows Ragnar distances on paper often don't match reality.

After Ragnar, I have a week off work for a staycation. I won't have to wake up as early for runs, but I probably still will. 

Friday, August 5, 2016

Fats and Facts for Friday

4:30 am runs with run buddies
Happy Friday! I hope you've left the week behind in good places and that your weekend is filled with adventure.

1. Marathon training has started! Unlike last year, most of my runs have been with other people. I'm working on pacing and nutrition (more on that below), but I also need to up my mental game. 

I came across a great article from nymag.com: Big Goals Can Backfire. Olympians Show Us What to Focus on Instead. The theory is that sometimes when you focus on a big goal it can lead to some not-so-good outcomes. It's best to set a big goal and focus on the process. Work on nailing the workouts, nutrition and whatever steps you need to do to reach your goal. 

Healthy fats and omega-3s
2. Fats. I met with my nutritionist and although my diet is generally healthy, she recommended that I include more healthy fats. In addition to providing anti-inflammatory effects, essential fatty acids and better nutrient absorption, healthy fats will help me increase my total caloric intake(which I need as I increase training) with out adding volume. Healthy fats include: nuts, fish, eggs, avocados, coconut/olive oil and full-fat dairy products. As a child of the 80s/90s, full-fat dairy is mentally the hardest to change. I've been eating non-fat yogurt and milk since I was wee.  My target daily macro composition: 50-55% Carbs, 25-30% Fats, 20% Protein. The day before a long run, I aim for 60% (or more) Carbs. 

Tuesday tempo run made "easy" with friends
3. The Great North Run. It's the world's largest 1/2 marathon (close to 60,000 athletes!) and it takes place every September in Newcastle, England. And guess what? Paul's cousin is getting married September 2017 in London. I'm determined to run the race. Unfortunately, it's not guaranteed because you have to do a ballot entry (lottery in UK speak). The lottery opens Jan/Feb 2017 and I will be crossing my fingers that I get in! (There is an associated 5K the day before that I will run if I don't get in. The consolation prize is that Paul will run that distance with me.)  

4. Ragnar Trail Appalachians-WV. I'm getting ready to run this race with the #trailbirds, an all Oiselle Volée team. Although I've participated in many Ragnar races, this is my first trail one. I'm both excited and nervous (especially about trail running at night). I also looking forward to visiting West Virginia--another state to cross off my list!

5. Olympic Track & Field events start August 12! I'll be watching via social media because I will be camping (see #4).

Monday, August 1, 2016

Here I go again...Not on my own.

Like the bad {in a perfectly good way} 80's rock ballad states:

Here I go again on my own Goin' down the only road I've ever known
Once again, it's the first week of August and I've started training for the California International Marathon. Just like last year.   Once again, I'm using Pete Pfitzinger's Advanced Marathoning to train for it. Just like last year. My goal, same as last year, is to run a sub-4:00 marathon or at least a strong marathon. 

Unlike last year, I'm not really on my own. 

Like the elite runner I'm most definitely not, this year I have a whole team to help me get to the finish line. 

  • My awesome physical therapist, Pete. I've been working with Pete since last October when I got injured training for CIM. We've activated and strengthened my glutes, worked on balance and movement and now are working on power and agility. 
  • Paul, my husband, who supports my running habit and is also my strength training coach. 
  • Jill, owner of The Energy Lab and fitness guru, who keeps me honest about Pilates and core-strength. I can't always make a Pilates class, but I do work on my own through out the week!
  • Dr. Mike, my chiropractor, who does ART on my tight IT bands and hip flexors to keep me running.
  • My nutritionist, Ashley. She's going to help me make sure I'm properly fueling for racing and training and to dial-in the best macro levels for me.
  • My local running mates, especially Dani, Andrea, Dana, April & Nathan. This includes  two running groups I've become more involved with--Redlands Runegades and the Loma Linda Lopers. I learn a lot from running with others. 
  • Erin Taylor and Jasyoga. With the #jasyogajuly challenge, I've made #hitreset a habit and use a video everyday (at least once, sometimes more!)
  • All of the women of the Oiselle Volée who have also started training for CIM. At last count, there was 20 of us. Although we don't live in the same town or even the same state, we are virtually cheering each other on. 

On Deck This Week (Week 1: 17 weeks until CIM)

Goal Mileage: 33 miles

Monday, August 1: REST/XT Day (I love how training plans start with a rest day)
Tuesday, August 2: 8 miles with 4 miles at lactate threshold (8:02-8:31/mile)
Wednesday, August 3: REST/XT Day
Thursday, August 4: 9 miles, general aerobic (9:10-10:22/mile)
Friday, August 5: REST/XT Day
Saturday, August 6: 4 miles, recovery (9:10-10:22/mile)
Sunday, August 7: 12 miles, medium-long (8:31-10:22/mile)

Training Zones based on Training Peaks experience-calculated values

Not to be forgotten: 27 Days until the Santa Rosa 1/2 Marathon!

Monday, July 25, 2016

{week 6} Training for the Santa Rosa 1/2 Marathon

There's a sweet moment in training when you feel all the work and effort is starting to pay off in stamina, speed and strength. Both Dani and I are half-way through our training for the Santa Rosa 1/2 Marathon and we both hit it this past week. We've had to overcome injuries, focus on correcting imbalances and add time for rest and recovery (It's taken me all these years of running to finally GET this). With 33 days until race day, we both feel we can run a strong race. 

As I wrote before, this week marks my last week of training specifically for the half-marathon because next week I start 18-weeks of training for the California International Marathon. I'm excited for CIM because: 1) I had to defer last year's race due to injury 2) I love running in Sacramento and 3) A large group of my Oiselle Volée teammates are running it this year. My goal for 2016 is to run a strong marathon. Marathon success is based on good pacing and nutrition. Both of which I need to work on improving and both of which are my focus in the weeks ahead. I'm particularly excited to focus on nutrition because I am going to start working with a nutritionist in August to help me figure out the best fueling strategies for me (races, long runs, etc). As for pacing, I'm going to start running with pacing groups again. 

Week 6 Training

Monday, July 25: Rest or Cross-train
Tuesday, July 26: 4 miles, easy
Wednesday, July 27: 5 miles, easy
Thursday, July 28: 8 miles with intervals (1x400, 5x800, 1x400)
Friday, July 29: Rest or Cross-train
Saturday, July 30: 16 miles, long-run
Sunday, July 31: 6 miles, easy

Monday, July 18, 2016

{week 5} will run for beer

Post-race, finish line beer!
On a long-ish run with my Saturday running group, most of the discussion centered around beer. The run was long-ish for me because I had a 5k race--more on that later--on Sunday and ended my run early. It centered on beer because a good portion of runners that day are training for the Santa Rosa Marathon. According to Jim, the beer festival after the race is the best part of the marathon. This excites me. I love trying and tasting different beers. 

So of course, I jumped at the chance to sign-up for the inaugural San Diego Craft Classic 5k and 1/2 Marathon hosted by Green Flash Brewery. I chose the 5k because it fit perfectly with my 1/2 marathon training plan, I was scheduled to run 8 miles with 3 miles at tempo. Tempo runs are hard and so are 5ks, but I love racing 5ks and I wanted to see if my racing legs were back after my injuries. I had a feeling I would race well because my speed training days were going so well and I was feeling strong and fit. 

Long story short--I came in second in my age group and 13th overall. It was my second best 5K time. It was a hard course with lots of hills. I'm stoked about the 13th place because that means I was faster than a lot of younger women.

I set up my Garmin to lap at a 1000m so I could break up the race into smaller than a mile chunks. My goal was to run each of the 1000m in 4:33-4:55. 

Dialing in my pre-race nutrition
My splits-->4:12, 5:11 {insane hill}, 4:39, 4:26, 4:40.

I feel more than ready to start marathon training in August! 

Week 5 Training

Monday, July 18: Rest or cross-train
Tuesday, July 19: 4 miles, easy
Wednesday, July 20: 5 miles, easy
Thursday, July 21: 9 miles with intervals (mile build-up: 1x400, 1x800, 1x1200, 1x1600, 1x800, 1x400)
Friday, July 22: Rest or cross-train
Saturday, July 23: 14 mile long-run
Sunday, July 24: 6 miles, easy