Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Race Week!

In approximately 24 short hours I will be landing at Hartsfield International Airport and be halfway home! I am beyond excited!! And in just five days I will be running the Seaside Half for the second year in a row!

As per the usual, life and sleep kind of got in the way and week 8 didn't turn into the high mileage week that I had anticipated but that's okay - it was kind of a pre - taper week taper...

I had to work and I had to sleep so Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday ended up being nice off days in which I wasted my life away staring at the back of my eye lids. But Thursday was absolutely beautiful with temps in the 50s so my alarms looked a little something like this...

I forced myself to get up and get in a nice 5.6 miles before I had to head back into work. It was absolutely worth the lack of sleep - I was wearing shorts and a t-shirt!! Amazing! And then by that morning there was snow on the ground... global warming perhaps?

Friday I did a little bit of speed work and did 3.1 miles and 20 minutes on the stairs. 

Saturday I did arms at the gym and then headed out for my longest run to date - 15 miles! I knew I could do it, because I felt so good the previous week on my 13 miles. It was about 46 when I left my starting point, so I had on shorts and a jacket and my gloves and ear muffs. I was warm. Almost too warm. The first mile was a treacherous hill, and it made me want to cry, and question why I ever started running in the first place.. and it just continued to climb, with the first 6ish miles a nice steady uphill climb. I was ready to call someone to come pick me up! And then it started to snow around mile 7 - and I needed someone to stick a fork in me because I was done. Running is such a mind game! Because just last week I ran a great 13 miles and this week I wanted to hurl myself into oncoming traffic on a 13 miler... BUT the good news is, is that I have been doing some much needed, not planned hill work -

My usual route -

The route I ran this weekend -

And the Seaside Half elevation... -

I am so hoping that this goes super fast because it is so super flat compared to what I've been running. So on to my goals for this weekend. As lofty as the usually are, I kind of have some legit goals..

A. I hate to even put it out there because I might be disappointed if it doesn't happen BUT I'd love to run this in 2:20... that would be a 9 min PR and an almost 25min PR off my time from last year.. we shall see

B. 2:30 - still an almost 15 min PR from last years time on this one...

C. Just finish and have fun and enjoy the beach!!

Cross your fingers and say a prayer for me. I kind of, sort of have high hopes, because I've never ran this much before a "race" before so I'm hoping that I'm in better shape than I ever have been before a half, and that I have that on my side! 

In other news, the pup and I went on a nice little 4 mile walk/run yesterday - again it was absolutely beautiful!! We have a new training tool that sends out a sound wave that dogs don't like when he pulls on the leash, and it has worked like a dream - I hate to speak too soon, but he did SO good yesterday!

Even though he still doesn't totally know what to think about it yet, and the whole running thing, with cars and other dogs.. we still have a lot of work to do, but he didn't choke himself to death and his eyes weren't bulging out of the sockets - so all in all I'd say it was a success!

 Next time you hear from me, I will be in sunny Florida!! Happy Tuesday!

Saturday, February 25, 2012

Long Run Jams

I don't know about y'all but I get bored real easy, and my ADD goes into overdrive during a run if my music gets old to me... I also hate paying $1.29 per song on iTunes.. but a girls gotta do what a girls gotta do and lucky for me my in laws gave the hubs a gift card to Best Buy that I kindly borrowed, okay, stole. (Thanks to Mr. and Mrs. T for taking care of me and not even realizing!!) I'm running my longest distance ever tomorrow - 15 miles!! Yeeks!! So I am definitely going to be needing some major distractions!! I usually steal 80% of my music from Christine and her weekend playlist posts because I don't really listen to the radio too much and when I do it's K-Love (contemporary Christian all the way!) And she always has a wide variety, for which I'm grateful because she does all the work and I just download. Tonight, in prep for tomorrow, I have looked at and studied the iTunes top singles chart like I'm going to be taking a final on it tomorrow, and I believe that I have compiled a nice little list of jams that will get me through the 120+ minutes I'll be pounding the pavement - and don't judge me for some of my choices... I was having a real hard time not downloading classics like this and this oh yeah and this.. oh wait and this one to take me back to my middle school days - I'll blame the hubs because we have a 90's Pandora station playing... The Tucker's get absolutely out of control of Friday nights... But have no fears, 95% of my choices are from this decade -

Good Girl - Carrie Underwood

We are Young - Fun. featuring Janelle Monae

So Good - B.o.B

Part of Me - Katy Perry

Wild Ones (with Sia) - Flo Rida

Runaway Baby - Bruno Mars

Paradise - Coldplay

Princess of China - Coldplay & Rihanna

Sexy and I know It - Lmfao (I know... I can't believe I downloaded it either...)

It Will Rain - Bruno Mars

The One That Got Away - Katy Perry

Like a Prayer - Madonna

Alone - Celine Dion

Barton Hollow - The Civil Wars

This Time - Celine Dion

Safe & Sound - Taylor Swift

Keep Your Eyes Open - NeedToBreathe (Probably my all time favorite band and song! Check them out!)

I've been on the US Track & Field website all night making routes, and then re - making routes and then making another, and then studying routes that other people have posted and I believe that I have finally made a decision. The majority of it is new to me so I've got double (route and music) new things to keep me occupied and thoughts of hurling myself in front of oncoming traffic at bay asking "why oh whyyy did I sign up for a marathon again!?!?!" And I'm going to be trying my new Endurance Fuel tomorrow on my run - keep me and my GI tract in your thoughts.. and cross your fingers for no issues!!

Isaiah 40:31 - I will run and not grow weary..

Monday, February 20, 2012

Week 7 Recap: Seaside 1/2

I had my highest mileage week ever! Woo! Go me! *insert happy dance here* 29 whole miles - Woah, I know, shut the front door... not too impressive, but impressive to me, and that is all that matters!

As per the usual - my weekly "plan" was just a guide.. which for the first time at least I have a guide to remind me what I need to get done... I've never "trained" (I use the word train, very loosely) for a race before. As I've mentioned before I usually run based on how I feel and how much time I have. For the first time I'm waking up early and making time.. any who so week 7 -

Monday: I went to the local running store and got fitted for new shoes! My stomach was still a little off from the previous week, so I opted to make Monday a rest day

Tuesday: I was feeling a little better and thought my stomach might be back in business so I went to the gym and started with the stairs for 20 min. In my little world the stairs actually calm my stomach and then I run... but it didn't work this time. I got in two very slow run/walk miles. 

Wednesday: I downed some Pepto before this run and was able to speed it up a little bit and get in 4 miles 

Thursday: Finally my stomach was back! Not like back, back, but enough that I was able to get in 6 miles! 

Friday: Oh my gosh - the weather was absolutely beautiful -

I got in 4 quick miles before work, and I'm so glad I got up early and was able to enjoy the weather AND y'all I have been wearing shorts! Outside! In February! In Connecticut!

Saturday: I know I can run 13 miles, I've run 13.1 miles three times now. But I've always gotten a t-shirt and a medal for those 13.1 miles. These 13.1 miles I ran for Starbucks and Panera Chili... I really wanted to get 14 miles in but I started kind of late, so it was dark by the time I got to 9 miles, so I was circling our little downtown area - where I never feel unsafe - and the temperature had definitely dropped and it was raining. I felt so hardcore. Like a real runner! And while I was in Starbucks getting my reward for getting as far as I did, a man was like "Oh, is it raining?" and I wanted to just have a here's your sign moment because I was dripping... Next on my list is a rain jacket with a hood... 

Sunday: Rest day. Sundays are always hard to get a run in, especially if I'm working that night because I like to go to church which requires a nap in the afternoon and some hubs time is always needed. So a rest day it was. 

Week 8 -
4 miles
7 miles
4 miles
15-16 mile
Long Run
7 miles easy

I am in the process of researching long run routes for this run, something new and something that will keep my interest for an extremely long time... Remember when I declared my love for the new peanut butter Gu

Well, I took three with me that I planned on taking every 4 miles during my long run, and I took my first one at mile 4 and then I just kept tasting it... I almost stopped for some Tums in hopes of keeping it where it belonged.. I really need to find something that my stomach can handle, so the hubs, sweet man that he is ordered me some Endurance Fuel - which claims to be the perfect pre-, during-, and post- race fuel..

We'll see how it holds up, and how I like it, and how it sits in my not so iron stomach...

Two weeks until I'm here and running - yeee!!! I can't wait!

It is with a very heavy heart that I share with you that sweet Avery Alis Ogburn was born thursday February 16, 2012 and spent a little over an hour with her mom and dad and all her grandparents. She had a beautiful and peaceful birth, life, and death. She is a very loved little girl. My heart is broken for my friends, but rejoicing in the fact that Avery is sitting at the feet of our Jesus. Please keep them in your prayers.

"Rejoice always, pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus" 1 Thessalonians 5: 16-18

"Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these" Matthew 19:14

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

first timer here

Today, on February 15, 2012, I went to the post office and applied for my very first passport!!!

Wahoo!! One more item to check off my "to do" list and get me to Uganda!! 
My wrinkly thumb is for hire... Future hand model - Add that to my resume. 

I was super excited, and what made it even better was that the lady at the Post Office who helped me, was excited too! Like I've said before, I don't exactly live in the land of sunshine and daisies, most of the time it all about me, me, me - and to have someone else be so helpful and as genuinely excited me for as I am was way cool!! There was also a woman there with her son applying for his passport - you want to know the age difference - let's just say I'm almost a quarter of a century and he was probably still in pull - ups. And he was getting his first passport and there I was getting mine. Thanks dad for never going anywhere we couldn't just hop in the car and drive to... But again - one more check off and I'm one step closer to preparing myself to leave the country!! And I don't think I procrastinated too, too long - I originally posted here in January and it's only the middle of February and I got it done! In my life, and the way I like to put things off - I think I did pretty good! Done and done.

Now I will just leave you with this little gem...

No I didn't get arrested... Mugshot worthy? I think so. 

As you can see, I really like to get dressed up for these kinds of things.. Oh you know, for a picture that's going to be sitting in a book that you plan to show all over the world for ten whole years. I really focused on my hair as you can see... took me eight hours of good sleep to achieve that master piece.. But it's done, I don't look too shiny, and I'm not cross eyed, and I at least got my eye brows did yesterday so there are two distinct ones on my face instead of the one solid one I've been rocking. 

Now I am off to the gym, because I think my stomach is finally back in business.. cross your fingers. And remember to keep Avery and her momma Carey in your prayers today - Carey had an amniotic reduction procedure done, which I'm told went very well and they were able to remove a lot of excess fluid to help make Carey more comfortable. Pray that it doesn't send her into labor (a side effect) and that Avery decides to hang out in there just a little while longer!!

"May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in Him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit" Romans 15:13

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

The week that wasn't AND new shoes

Let's just forget week 6 ever happened shall we? Okay, glad that's behind us..

Okay, if you must know, I had great big plans for Thursday through Sunday. Big days, my longest training run ever at 13-14 miles! But lo and behold I came down with a stomach bug on Friday. Me. I never get sick. Never, ever. And right in the middle of marathon training, I get a stomach bug that plagues me for three whole days. I was a most unproductive member of society for the entire weekend. My wonderful Friday post that was posted around 11:30 am Friday morning happened just a short hour before the end of the weekend for me. Where I kept my station on the couch for a solid 72 hours. I would have pictures but it wasn't pretty. Needless to say, my mileage was just as ugly because I planned all my runs around my days off!! And then I got sick...

Behind us? Forgotten? Good.

So moving on - I got new shoes today!! And not just any kind of shoes - running shoes! I've been very loyal to my Asics Kayano's - I love them. They have stability and they feel like a cloud on my feet. But, I bought them for that reason only.. I've always bought my shoes at the big time sports stores and I bought the Kayano's for the sheer reason that they felt like clouds on my feet. I had no idea what kind of stride I had, was my foot neutral? Do I have a high arch, or a flat foot? Which could cause me to over pronate, or under pronate - or was my stride just great and I didn't have to worry about any of it and I could go for the many new minimalist shoes out there? The Kayano's have mad stability and help people that over pronate big time. I just knew that I'd never had a problem with them and I loved them. But the downside to them is that they are kind of pricey. I would never drop that kind of $$ on a regular shoe, I wouldn't be able to justify it. But in a running shoe? Sure, I can justify that. So my goal yesterday was to see what else was out there that my foot would be comfortable in that I wouldn't be dropping so many Benjamin's on... So I went to my local running store where I've been stocking up on Gu and Nuun for the past few months because they have this fancy little setup that I'm sure a lot of local running stores have - a treadmill with a webcam behind it that connect to a TV screen that records you running and then they can watch in slow motion your stride and tell you what shoe would work best for you. There is a little more to it than that - I was given a neutral shoe to run in originally so my foot could do what it naturally does - which I over pronate in my left foot quite a bit. Then I was given some shoes to run in that would help me, and I ran again, and they watched and analyzed and gave me their two cents. I thought it was really cool. And of course, in the Kayano's my stride was darn near perfect.. of course. BUT I went "down" a shoe to the Asics 2170. After running in this shoe, my left foot still over pronated a bit, but it was still a "natural" stride. And they didn't cost as much and they have some magenta in them. I was sold!

Big thanks to people at The Running Company in Greenwich for being such a big help to me and making me feel like a real boy runner. They are super professional and know their stuff! In other news, I almost stole some GU y'all!!! I had it in my hand and went to try on shoes and habit just threw them in my purse, and then I looked down and was like holy crap! I almost became a thief!! That was a close call!

Since week 6 never happened, I'd like a do over please... I'm re-evaluating my training - it is after all, my first marathon, I have no major time goals - I'm not qualifying for Boston any time in my lifetime so I'm just aiming to finish with a big smile on my face and not have puke and/or tears covering my face in my finish line photo.. So while I will concentrate on speed for the Seaside half, I'm going to concentrate on running, and running long for the marathon so that I may become acclimated to the distance. And focus on fueling and what works best for me so that I may avoid the puking and the crying.. you know? I read the blogs of all these amazing runners that run really fast and I have to remind myself that I am so not there yet. Am I improving? Yes. Am I mediocre at best? Yes. Do I love running? Yes. So, does it really matter if I'm not in the first, second, or even third corral? No. I just like to run, and want to be able to enjoy it, for the sheer happiness it brings me - most of the time. So all the serious mushy gushy talk to bring me to week 7 plan -


4 miles Progression + Spin
Long Run 14-15 miles
4 miles easy
7 miles
7 Miles

I'm going to try and follow a combination of Hal Higdon's Intermediate 1 and Intermediate 2 plans. Because I know how to run, I just need the distance. I will run around my work schedule still, and continue to try and do spinning for XT once or twice a week, and a little bit of strength training thrown in there as well. So here's to a better week 7 AKA a week 6 do-over.

Happy Valentine's Day and please keep sweet baby Avery in your prayers today!