Monday, August 28, 2006

Long Slow Day and 85/85

I ran my longest run to date yesterday, 7 miles. We have been flirting with this run for a few weeks but it has been postponed a few times.

Five us met for the run. The course we run is marked for 10K. We decided to run to the 6 mile mark, turn around and then run back to the 5 mile mark rather than try to guess where the 7 mile mark would be.

I didn't start my stopwatch so I had to ask someone for the first mile time. I started my watch then. The pack is pretty much together still at the first mile but then we start to spread out.

By the third mile, I fell to the back of the pack, the gazelle was out front and then everyone else fell between me and the gazelle. The sun came out so we had to deal with that as well as the humidity.

Two people dropped to a walk about the 4.5 mile mark so I passed them. Another person decided to only run 5.5 miles but she did walk the full 7 miles. The gazelle finished and then joined me for my slow sprint to the 7 mile mark. My time was 1:28:03

1 mile: 11:43
2 mile: 12:37
3 mile: 12:11
4 mile: 12:51
5 mile: 12:57
6 mile: 12:44
7 mile: 13:17

Tonight, I had 4 miles on my schedule. This is where the 85/85 comes to play. Even though it was 8:00 PM out, it was 85F with 85% humidity. Yuck!

I came up on about the 1 mile mark (not sure since I don't have my neighborhood running routes marked), I felt drops on my arm. I knew I was hot and sweaty and was impressed that I was hot and sweaty enough to be dripping. Heh, it turned out to be a very light sprinkle.

When I got back from the run, Greg asked if it was raining. I said it sprinkled occasionally, not even enough to wet the sidewalk. The reason my shirt was soaking wet was SWEAT, not rain.

I did an easy run this evening.....49:23

Tuesday, August 22, 2006

Slow and Slower...Perhaps not

So Monday, we met out at the fairgrounds for a 4 mile run. It was Samantha, Candi and I. Right before we got there, a small rain shower came through so it was humid. Ick!

We decided to run the route backwards for a change. Rather than start at the start line (this is a 10K marked course we run on), we walked over to the 4 mile mark and started there.

As soon as we started, Candi and I could tell that the miles we had run in the past few days were catching up with us. We took our four miles pretty slow, our time was 49:49. Samantha, on the other hand, took off like a rocket. I think by the end of the run, she was at least 1/5 mile ahead of us. Go Samantha!

We met out again tonight. Well, Candi and I met LaVonne out there since Samantha was working. Before we ever started, I told Candi that I was going to take it easy and slower than the night before. She said that was fine, she was going to do the same thing.

The night was much cooler, not as humid and we had a nice breeze for portions of the run.

During the final mile, Candi started to pull away and get out in front. I let her. Then LaVonne got ahead of me. See ya!

As is my custom, I always try to sprint the last .10 mile (or longer if I feel up to it) I felt I had a nice, slow run...which is what I wanted. I almost passed LaVonne but she took my sprinting as a challenge and sprinted ahead too.

Color me shocked when I looked at my watch and my time was 47:31!! I won't bore you with splits but we even managed to run negative splits again. Now, how did that happen? It felt like a nice, slow run but it was faster. I am chalking it up to the cooler weather.

I am off until Friday, when I meet Chuck for a 5 mile run. See ya then!

Saturday, August 19, 2006

R3 Anniversary Run and a new PR!

Greg, Rhys and I rolled out of bed way too early this morning to make R3's Anniversary 5K run. Greg had not planned to run with Rhys but our built in babysitter was out on a scout camp out last night.

We made it out there and a few of my running buddies (Samantha and LaVonne) as well as fellow half marathon trainees (Anita and Jim) were out there. It was a beautiful morning but pretty darn humid. Just doing the warm up slow jog was enough to make us all sweaty. I laughed when Chuck said to do a one mile warm up so he modified it to 8 minutes of jogging instead.

Samantha and I made our way to the back of the pack, there was a bit of chatting and then the gun went off. This was not a chip timed race so I started my watch when I crossed the start line. OF course, this means my official time is a bit off of what I actually ran but that is fine.

Right off, we were sweltering and the course has rolling hills. We saw the turn around point for the one mile fun run and about died because if it was a half mile (it was not) then we were running almost a 16 minute mile....ACK!

Greg had taken off long ago with the stroller and the last time I saw him on the course was as he turned the corner near the 1 mile mark, I was probably just past half a mile.

At the one mile mark, we were stunned to see our time was 10:53....the fastest mile I have ever done since I started this running business in February. I was feeling slow (seems to be a trend lately) so that really helped me out.

The second mile was a bit easier because we were on fairly level ground, still some rolling hills though. We passed the two mile mark in 11:18 and as we turned the corner, we saw IT.

IT was a long, long, long hill in front of us. It wasn't steep, it just went on forever. Samantha (my buddy) and I helped each other up the hill, encouraging one another.

At the top of the hill was our last turn and we were just over a half mile to the finish. There were two high school girls in front of us, walking. As I passed, I heard one audibly whisper to the other "We can't let her beat us!" Since I was the only runner passing and near them, little doubt I was the her in question. Whatever girls, I just smiled and kept running.

They went sprinting off in front of me and then dropped to a walk again. Everytime I would pass them, they would sprint ahead of me again. At the three mile mark, their coach came out and they ran all the way in. I hit the three mile mark at 12:02 and started to sprint to the finish.

I could see the clock was at 34:something and I really wanted to beat 35 minutes even though my goal was to be under 36. I tried but my official time was 35:03 (my watch time was 34:54)

I was thrilled with my time, it was exactly 3 minutes faster than my previous 5K race. I was pleased that I maintained a pretty decent pace the entire race. I won a hat too.

1 mile: 10:53
2 mile: 11:18
3 mile: 12:02

Husband, pushing the baby stroller, finished in 26:33 He was hoping for under 25 minutes but was still happy.

Samantha placed second in her age group!

Here is what a veteran runner wrote about the race today: It was a great time and a well organized race. Tough course, with a challenging hill on mile 3 and high humidity today. Glad to see I was not the only one who thought that hill was tough!

Overall, it was a great race. Tomorrow is our LSD but I know Chuck said we would probably not do the 7 miles we have scheduled.

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

Run and then run more

It feels like I have been out running a load this week. My milage really has not increased much but those few miles make a difference.

Sunday - I did six miles with the group.

Monday - I did just over four miles here in the neighborhood. It was slower than I really wanted to go but it was still a decent time. It was cool enough I decided to try running in a t-shirt rather than my normal tank top. Mistake!! Even though the shirt I ran in was a wicking shirt, not 100% cotton, it was still heavier than what I have been running in. It also has sleeves! I will go back to my tank tops and sleeveless shirts until the weather cools off significantly more.

Today - I met Candi and Samantha down at the fairgrounds. Since it is starting to get dark earlier, the park is closing earlier so we moved our meet time up by 15 minutes to make sure we got our run in.

Once again, I felt like I was just plodding along and not making much progress. At the end of my three miles, I was stunned.

1 mile: 12:15
2 mile: 12:07
3 mile: 11:20!!!

A big change is that I can stop and run again. By that, I mean that I can stop running during a run and then I can continue to run again. That is a big change for me. I only did 3 miles. Candi did 3.5 and as she passed me on the final .3, she wanted me to tell her she could do it. I just ran the last .3 with her. Samantha did 4.5 miles and Candi and I joined her for her final .3 miles. Even six weeks ago, I would not have been able to do that! I would have encouraged but there is no way I could have ran that little bit after my run was finished.

It has been six months since I started running consistantly. February 14 was a cold, winter morning. It was 32F outside and blowing snow. We did 60 seconds of jogging and 90 seconds of walking for 20 minutes (as well as a 5 min warm up and cool down) At the end of that 30 minutes, I was breathing like I had just run miles. It is funny to look back at that now because after six miles of nonstop running, I don't breathe that hard.

What a difference six month can make!

Sunday, August 13, 2006

Long, Slow Day

Today was my long, slow run which for me meant 6 miles.

We had a crowd out there today since normally it has just been Jim and I and occasionally Anita. This morning there was Jim, Chuck, Sally and Meighan. Chuck and Sally are the gazelles while the rust of us just kinda go at our own pace.

The temperature was low but the humidity was still there so it was more of a work out than I would have liked. Of course, that is sorta an oxymoron, right? It is not much of a work out if I am not really putting in much effort.

I messed up in marking my milage...too busy yapping with Jim and Meighan but I will sacrifice my times for making a run go easier.

We did our six miles in 1:15:04. Not exactly a blistering pace but it was a comfortable pace so we will take it. Next week we have the R3 5K run.

Chuck emailed our milage for this coming week....eeek! I have a SEVEN mile run scheduled for my LSD. That will be the longest I have ever run at one stretch.

On a side note, my lawn mowing shoes have given me a heck of a blister on my heel. I need to toss them. It didn't bother me at all while I was running but yeoch, it hurt while I was mowing. Time to toss the lawn mowing shoes. This means I need a new pair of running shoes so my current NB shoes can be demoted to lawn mowing shoes.

Friday, August 11, 2006

Something Different

This was on a friend's blog so I thought I would do it here.

1.Grab the book nearest to you, turn to page 38, find line 4 and write what it says. "simply because I was the only entrant in my age bracket. Pride" Exciting, huh?

2. Stretch your left arm out as far as you can. What can you touch? Nothing....empty air

3. What is the last thing you watched on TV? An episode from the second season of The 4400

4. Without looking, guess what time it is. 9:45 pm

5. Now look at the clock. What is the actual time? 9:41 pm

6. With the exception of the computer, what can you hear?TV, air conditioner

7. When did you last step outside? What were you doing? Oh, it was after dinner. I walked outside to throw out a diaper.

8. Before you started this survey, what did you look at? Blogs

9.what are wearing? Denim capris, green t-shirt

10. Did you dream last night? No idea

11. When did you last laugh? When Greg was feeding Rhys popcorn about an hour ago

12. What is on the walls of the room you are in? Cork board, shelf with a CD player, dragons, legos and a picture.

13. Seen anything weird lately? Define "weird"

14. What do you think of this quiz? It is different

15. What is the last film you saw? At the theater? Monster House

16. If you became a multi-millionaire overnight, what would you buy? Land to build on

17. Tell me something about you that I don’t know. What DO you know about me?

18. If you could change one thing about the world, regardless of guilt or politics, what would you do? Remove all forms of cancer

19. Do you like to dance? Yes but not very well

20. Comment to George Bush Hi George!

21. Imagine your first child is a girl, what do you call her? Kaitlyn, that is what we called our first daughter.

22. Imagine your first child is a boy, what do you call him? Well...again... we DID call him Nicholas.

23. Would you ever consider living abroad? Sure, been there, done that

24. What do you want God to say to you when you reach the pearly gate? Weclome!

ORN: 4 miles, 49:31 woo hoo!!

Thursday, August 10, 2006

Rain, Rain

Well, I meant to blog last night but just didn't ever get around to it.

I met Chuck and Jim down at APSU for an evening run. All the Titans fans were coming in to watch them practice but we had the front of the parking lot to ourselves. A couple of ladies from CRC showed up as well. It was gray, we could hear thunder but no lightning so we set off on our four mile run.

The route started the same and it was soon clear that we were two groups. The gazelles, Chuck and the ladies, and then the penguins - Jim and I. Jim and I had a nice conversation as we ran along. We run normally at about the same pace but when running together, we tend to go a little faster.

Naturally, it started to rain really well about half way into the run. Despite that, this was one of the nicest runs I have been on in some time. It was so nice and cool! I think it dropped the temperature significantly.

As we rounded the corner of Riverside to go back up North Second, we were crossing the entrance to MacDonalds. Since we were already in the entrance, a car that wanted to come in waited for us to pass. As he waited, another car rammed him from behind. That caused a chain reaction of the second car being rammed by a third car. This caused the lead car - the one waiting for us - to be shoved forward several yards. It narrowly missed Chuck, who was on the outside and leading, by less than a foot. The rest of us jumped sideways and yelled a few things. No one was injured but boy, my heart was going.

We cut across and went up Emerald Hill. It is a deceptive hill, it doesn't look that awful but my legs told me the truth. Jim and I made it partially up before we walked. Jim did say the last time he had run the same route with Chuck that he had walked several times by that point so both of us were doing well to have just this one walk break. Once we crested the hill, we picked up running again.

We finished the 4 miles in 48:08 - a new record for me! Of course, I have loads of room to improve so I have to expect to see my times get better but it is still thrilling to see.

I went and registered Greg for the R3 5K run. I also found out the Cricket's Running Wild 5K at the zoo has been postponed until January at some point. Bummer! There is still the Sango Scamper in October, I will talk to Chuck and see if he thinks I would better off running the 10K or the 5K...I am thinking at that point, I would be better off with the 10K only because my daily runs will be about that.

This evening, I got out the bike and did 7.4 miles around the neighborhood.

Got another 4 miles planned for tomorrow morning down at APSU. I am not sure if Anita will make it or not though.

Monday, August 07, 2006

Fantastic Run

You know, that is one thing I really like about running. You can have a totally crummy run (see yesterday) but then you can go the next day and have a fantastic run. One bad run doesn't doom me to bad runs ever after.

I met Candi down at the fairgrounds for a four mile run this evening. LaVonne met us too! LaVonne was in our 5K group and we generally see her at the events we run. Candi works with her and told her about us meeting to run. Samantha was working tonight so it was just us.

I was a bit concerned about the temperature since it was still over 90F when we started the run. It helps that the sun is going down, the humidity was lower and it didn't feel horrible.

I felt pretty good during most of the run and the final mile, I felt good enough to push myself a bit. My total run time was 50:46, which I love! I think it is fantastic.

1 mile: 12:17
2 mile: 13:05
3 mile: 13:24
4 mile: 11:58!!

Tomorrow is a day off so I may or may not run in the neighborhood. It depends on how I feel tomorrow. Next scheduled run will be Wednesday evening with Chuck, Jim, Candi and maybe Anita down at APSU

Sunday, August 06, 2006

I Fought and I Won!

I fought my inner loser today and while I eventually won, the inner loser did score some points.

I had planned to get up to meet Jim and possibly Anita down at the fairgrounds for a 5 mile run. Rhys had other ideas and was Mr. Fuss from about 3 am to 4:30 am. When my alarm went off at 6:20 am, I felt half dead. I figured it would not be a good thing to try to do my long run when I was feeling whipped.

After I had gotten up, I felt a lot better and looked at the temperature out. It was 84F, looked nice but didn't feel that bad. I checked the forecast and it looked like it was the cool point of the day so I decided it would be a good time to go out for my long run.

Mistake #1 - I have been running in the evening and first thing in the morning. Middle of the morning is a HUGE difference.

Since I normally run my longer runs at the fairgrounds, I had to come up with an alternate route here in my neighborhood. Greg suggested that I run my normal 3 mile route, then run it a second time, turning around at the 1 mile mark. I really didn't want to do that because when I get close to the house, I want to go home. I figured it would be okay to go run the Chapel Hill 10K route and just run the first 2.5 miles and turn around.

Mistake #2 - I don't like this route on a good day. It feels like it is hills both coming and going. There is also no shade.

I got my water out, got my cell phone and set out. My inner loser started to whine as soon as we got down in the gully right before the state line. Even though I was in the shade at that point, it is a pretty good climb to get out of the gully. I ignored the loser and finished my first mile in 12:08

Mistake #3 - I was going way too fast that first mile even though I felt great. My long slow day should be significantly slower than my normal training runs. My normal runs are closer to a 12:30 pace so I should have slowed down right then and there.

By the time my second mile was looming, my inner loser was winning. I was hot, I was sweaty, I was discouraged at how tired I felt and I just wanted to go home. I prevailed, I made it to the second mile in 13:29....much closer to the pace Chuck wanted me to do my LSD at.

As I looked ahead to the next mile, all I could see was the rise and fall of hills. I started to run, slowed down and my inner loser asserted herself and I ended up walking. I didn't walk all of mile 2 to mile 3 but it was a significant you can see by my time 19:45!!!

I stopped at mile #3 for a water break. While I sipped my water, I fought an internal batter with that loser. I knew I was only 2 miles from home, knew I could do 2 miles and knew that even if I had to slow down, I could run those two miles.

I started out to complete those two miles very slowly, the loser urging me to just give it up and walk. Loser wanted to me just sit on the side of the road, in the little shade provided, and call Greg to come get me. I did call tell him I was in the final two miles and asked him to fill my orange mug with ice and water.

Mile 3 to mile 4 was a respectable 13:53 Considering I had done a lot of walking and everything, it not too awful and really, only a bit off the 13:40 pace suggested by Chuck.

Even though my last mile is mostly in the shade, it is down and then back out of a large gully. I slowed down even more but completed my last mile in 15:02

I found out a few things about this totally stinky run. I really need to stick to running in the morning or in the evening. I need to not run a route that I dislike as much as I dislike the Chapel Hill route. The temperature rose over 5F while I was out and the heat index was way up there too.

So, even though my inner loser won for a mile, I was able to shove her back down and complete my 5 mile run. Yep, my time sucked but I finished it and I will be back out there running again is behind me. Despite everything, I had a victory and won.

Total Run Time: 1:14:30
Distance: 5 miles
1 mile: 12:08
2 mile: 13:29
3 mile: 19:45
4 mile: 13:53
5 mile: 15:03
Average pace: 14:54

Final Score: Denise 8 Inner Loser 2

Thursday, August 03, 2006

It's The Little Things

People tend to get wrapped up in looking for big things to be excited about, big things to tell others about but you know, sometimes it really is the little things that make me smile.

1. Stay Put Hair Bands Yep, you read correctly. A hairband but not like the other hairbands. They have these little tread things on the band that make them ::gasp:: stay put. Seriously, even in my thick hair, the band doesn't slip, roll, or fall out. I don't have to keep redoing my ponytail or pulling it back into place. I even found colored ones at Target. I love these bands, I really do!

2. ID Tags There are places that make ID tags specifically for runners to wear. You can get an ankle one, a wrist one, a shoe one, a necklace...all engraved and with reflective bands. I admit it, they are nice. They are also pricey! I decided to use the machine in my local Wal-Mart that makes tags for pets. For $5, I got a oval shaped dog tag that lists my name, phone number, medical info and an emergency number. I threaded it through my shoelace and then it sits between my shoelaces and the tongue of my shoe. It is lightweight, I can't feel it and best of all, it was less than 1/4 the cost. Husband liked it so much, he had me get him one. They are inexpensive enough that I got one for each pair of running shoes I use.

3. Watch I don't know if I blogged about my watch a few weeks back. I have a couple of watches that I run with, both are Timex and both have a stopwatch function. I have one that I prefer but they both are decent, basic watches. I decided I needed to get a new watch, one that had a multi-lap function and one that I could keep track of my mile times during a run. I casually mentioned to my husband the specific watch I was looking for, specific only to the brand and kind...not the specific model. He was on his way to the store so I asked him to check prices for me. He came back with a watch for me! It was the brand, it was the kind but not the specific model I wanted. It was close but it truly wasn't what I wanted. He said that was fine, just return it and get the one I wanted. I got the one I wanted, without returning the one he got me. It seemed kinda silly to have both so I returned the one I really wanted. Yeah, I know but I didn't want to hurt his feelings when he really was pleased that he got it for me.

I tried the watch out, it was a bit more difficult to figure out and I lost my mile times during a run. As I said, I really didn't want this one and didn't like the way it is set up but I can live with it. My next run, I just went back to my regular watch. The other day, I decided to try his watch out again and could not find it. A all out search didn't find it so I assumed one of the smaller kids took it, thinking the indiglo was cool. I got the watch I originally wanted and all was well.

Husband found the watch under the couch yesterday. I fiddled with it and yep, I still don't like it but I can live with it. I will use my new watch for most of my runs but I will alternate with his watch just because he gave it to me.

4. Deodorant I run, I sweat, therefore I tend to smell. I was reading someone who posted how to counter smelliness while running. When I say smelliness, I am being specific to arm pits. The article mentioned that odor occurs when sweat comes into contact with bacteria. It suggested using and anti-bacteria wash for arm-pits. Then apply an Aluminum-choloride anti-perspirant right afterwards. Hey, I am game, I am willing to try it so I went off to the store to check out the deodorants. I found Adidas 24 hr Control. A1.6 oz tube of solid was under $2 so worth trying out. I tried it out and it works great!! When I was shopping, I found 2.6 oz tubes, with a coupon, so I got 2 more for less than what I paid for the first. I think I am set for a long time on deodorant now!

Tomorrow is a 4 mile run with Chuck. I have not run in two days now and can't wait!

Told ya, it is the little things...