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Brain tumor survivor | triathlon & duathlon finisher | wife | cat mom | friend to many | supreme smart aleck. I'd like coffee and a book please.

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

What Is TOO Early?

Today is December 3 and as of this very moment as I sit here and type this, Tom and I are already registered for 3 events and planning to register for one HUUUUGE event. I'm pretty sure that the other events that we have run will make it onto the calendar, but this girl just can't pass up a good deal!

That's right people...a DEAL.

Well, two were a good deal, one was just making sure that we got a spot in a certain race held in March.

Not long after the Vancouver USA Marathon weekend was over, registration opened up again for the following year and was offering a super early bird starting in August (I think) and I couldn't pass up the $49 half marathon fee - I really liked this event that much! This might be the event that I try to PR in next year. This year I got a PR for the Half Marathon distance as I posted a time 10 minutes faster than the Holiday Half last December. Woo Hoo!

The next race we signed up for was the Shamrock Run Half Marathon - with a field limit of 2,500. Since we weren't sure how popular this particular distance would be, we decided to go ahead and register on October 1 to secure a couple of spots for ourselves. This one was $70, but it's the Shamrock and Doernbecher's is the charity so really, it's a good thing.

Until this year I didn't know that there were Black Friday specials for races. An email popped up in my inbox from Energy Events for 3 different deals that they would have for a couple of days....whaaat?! $20 Fort Vancouver Run?! Sign. Me. Up. The distances for this race have changed and they now will feature a 12k and 5k instead of 15k and 6k (the 6k is a weird distance anyway). Hoping that the day isn't TOO cold and wet. Sometimes we forget how cold we were when a low price is dangling in front of our noses...haha.

As a crazy bonus for ourselves we are seriously considering registering for the Runner's World Half Marathon & Festival that is held in Bethlehem, PA. Now THAT is a destination run! The race registration will be the least expensive that we will pay out of the whole trip, but it will be worth it. Tom is pretty excited about this as it will be smack dab in the middle of a steel mill...the Bethlehem Steel Mill! To me this would be a once in a lifetime opportunity. There are so many events to try I would want to go somewhere else next time.

I'm pretty sure that the other races that have become regular events on our calendar will make it on the calendar in addition to these that we are registered for already.

It's never too early to plan, plan....PLAN!

2014 Running Events are DONE

Wow...look at what we did this year!

March 2nd - Fort Vancouver Run 10k, Vancouver, WA
This event was just plain cold and miserable. I'm glad that we did it, but still...SO, SO COLD! It felt good to stop, but it felt even better to get a cup of coffee at Thatcher's afterwards.
Hot Buttered Run - cold and rainy, yeah that's a good combo!
March 16th - Shamrock Run 15k, Portland, OR
This year's Shamrock was supposed to be my last Shamrock....I had declared that over and over. We had a great group of people sign up to run and I finally bumped up to the 15k instead of settling for what I know and stick with the 8k. It was a grind, but I can say that I did it!
Good looking crew - we had a few new faces this year!
June 15th - Vancouver Half Marathon, Vancouver, WA 
This race was Tom's first half and my second. I really liked this route a lot and we both felt pretty good all the way to the finish!
before the event
At home all blinged out!
Oh yeah..I like me a half marathon
June 21 - MarriageTeam, Saving Marriages 5k, Vancouver, WA
This was a fun run to help promote MarriageTeam here in Clark County - I was able to round up some of my church peeps for this one. I really liked that this race was close to home and it was also free. We did make a donation to the organization, but even so...we could have just done the run and called it good. It was the first event that Mary did with us and I think she enjoyed it. 
Hanging out afterwards with Kristen and Bobbi
Tom and Cam are gettingready to race!
July 4th, - Independence Run 5k, Ridgefield, WA
We hadn't planned on getting anyone together for this one, but Suzy and the Trujillos ran so we go to hang out afterwards.  Everyone (except for me) placed in their age divisions. I guess I'm just gonna have to run until there is no one else in my age division to take home a ribbon!
Me, Tom, Judy, Norm and Suzy
August 2nd - Wahine 5k, Fairview, OR
I really wanted to do a duathlon, but the training for that just wasn't going to happen. So I was able to get a couple of other of my girl peeps interested and I did the 5k "with" Mary and Julie (friend of Mary) and Kristen did the Duathlon.
Mary, me,  Julie and another runner whose name I don't remember.
September 13th - Fairhaven 15k, Bellingham, WA
For something a little different we decided to try a "destination" event. So off to Bellingham for a quick weekend get away. I really like Bellingham! It's laid back there, perfect weather not overly hot or anything. Boy howdy we didn't realize how much of a running community they have there! Not just the young college kids, even the "seasoned" runners are FAST! We were both a little dismayed at just how fast the race was there! It was a lot of fun and I'm glad that we made the trip to experience the running community in B-ham.
Runner Man!
I tried really hard to look decent for this picture
Sure I'm ready to go...why not?
September 27th - North County Wine Run Half Marathon, Battle Ground, WA
I had a little bit of an idea of what run might be, but you just never know until you get out there. I declare here and now that hills are not my friend. I've got some serious work to do! This is a race that I will likely not do again. It is nice and close to home, but the course is very much open to traffic and there are lots of big pick-up truck owners in North Clark County! I didn't feel 100% safe during this event.
The coolest race bling - wine bottle stopper that actually works!
Before the race, still happy, happy!
November - Hot Buttered Run 5k, Vancouver, WA
It has been a couple of years since we did this run last - and this year I opted to put together a team. Team members receive a $5 discount if there are at least 4 team members. Score! Tom and I and just two more, not a problem! In the beginning we signed up for the 12k race which is what we did the first time we did HBR, but we switched to the 5k since Tom had a fractured rib. The good thing is that he was able to get through the race without too much discomfort. Also, it seemed wrong to pay for a race, get a shirt, but not run it. He felt that he needed to "earn" the right to wear the shirt.
The obligatory selfie
This isn't even a professional photo - those usually stink anyway. Tom will be my pro photog from now on!
Now that I see what all we have done this year it makes sense that I feel tired, both physically and mentally. We were either training or running in events. Pretty much all year long. There were some down weeks for silly things like illness and physical aches and pains, but really, we were on the move all year long! 

Besides the running events I did add to my running gear...

Brooks Ghost 7
Okay, so I didn't spontaneously add shoes to my running gear, but I did change the type of shoe - I was running in Stability shoes for a  few years. This summer I switched (per the suggestion of the FitRight dude) to a neutral shoe. I LOVE THESE SHOES! Very comfortable, lightweight and cool looking!
Nathan Hydration Belt
It occurred to me after the Holiday Half last year that carrying water or other beverage wouldn't be a bad idea. So the first hydration belt I got Tom had used so much and got used to carrying that he thought he would like to use it for his first half...excellent choice! So I went out and got this baby right before the Vancouver USA Half Marathon. I LOVE IT!
Nike+ Sport Watch
At some point earlier this year I decided that it was time to upgrade from a watch that just tracks time and choose something that would do SO MUCH MORE. This was presented to me just a couple of days before the Vancouver Half an early birthday gift from my awesome hubby!

So, now that this year is nearly over and we have all of these races behind us, it's time to take time to reflect on those races and see what we can do to improve - pretty much everything! We will start preparing for the first race of the year: Even though the Fort Vancouver Run was miserable...there was a Black Friday deal and I just couldn't pass it up! $20 registrations! Well start training for that in the next few weeks - maybe start in January, but for now I am in rest mode, probably for another couple of days. Then back to an easy running schedule for a couple of weeks and then maybe ramp up again. We will see.


 run, Run, RUN!

Thursday, November 6, 2014

Mission Accomplished

As we get closer to our final event of the year I can look back at our year and declare "Mission Accomplished." At the beginning of the year I had some high hopes to do more than just running events, but life happens and sometimes priorities have to be changed.

When January rolled around it seemed like we had all sorts of time to plan the different events that would be fun to get back into again...like doing a multisport event at Blue Lake. The problem is that I REALLY like the Blue Lake Weekend events in June, but that would have been way too close to my first Vancouver Half and I was pretty sure that I didn't want to be dead during the month of June. So that plan was out, but it's not totally out of mind.

The All Womens event is at the end of July - beginning of August AT Blue Lake each year. SO, if I can't do a multisport event I can at least be in the middle of all that activity. So, I recruited Mary and challenged her to do the 5k event with me. She in turn invited people from her office and we were set! Since she had a friend from the clinic to run with I kind of abandoned them and tried to run my own race. Blah Blah Blah....

So, just being at Blue Lake in August really got me thinking about what I need to do to get into the pool. Still working on that one! I have decided that I will put the Girlfriends and Dudes triathlon on the calendar for next year. How difficult can it be swimming WITH the current down the Columbia River?! I'm in! Well, at this point I think I'm in...

The Hot Buttered run is less than 30 days away and we are just now getting back on track with our training. I'm not going to get all weird about it - I've done more on less training and didn't die.

I'm SO looking forward to next year! A new year and new goals! Oh Yeah...baby!

Running has never been so much fun!

Monday, September 29, 2014

North County Wine Run

Photo Credit: Get Bold Events
This past weekend we did the North County Wine run - Half Marathon. This was my third half since doing the Holiday Half in December. I was trying out this half marathon idea back in December and decided that I liked it - even though I was majorly sore the next day and the day after and so on.

A half marathon is great because training for it doesn't take over your life - if you mean to do well. Since I have adequate ability I figured that doing half marathons would be a nice challenge. After all I have already conquered Duathlons and have done a couple of Triathlons, as well as a Century bike ride - so I can suffer with the best of them. The other thing that is not necessarily unique to me, but I do suffer from exercise induced asthma and the longer distance races are harder for me to do, but I don't let that stop me! I figure I'll just keep doing all these things until something goes out of order and is not fixable.

Okay, so I grew up here in Clark County and I know what the terrain is like in east county and I have HEARD of the terrain in North Clark County, but had not in all my years experienced it up close and personal. Let's just say that the terrain is pretty similar. Hills are hills wherever you go...some are rolling, others are steep...short, looong...but in the end they are HILLS! Are you seeing the trend here...there were some hills :) check out the profile -
Photo Credit: Get Bold Events
I want to say that the original route might have been slightly better, but I don't know. The race venue changed a couple of weeks before the race so that meant that the route was re-vamped as well. Had I been on the ball I would have saved the profile for the original route, although I don't know that I would feel better about it or not. Hills are hills!

Tom and I ran our own races, which was good for him because he would have gotten some attitude from me and I was seriously not happy. Like I mentioned before I have adequate ability and if I were to actually do things that would give me more strength then I would probably do better (make mental note...). We'll have to try to work those into our non-running days. Anway, in all the activities I have done I don't think I have ever thought to myself, "Oh, I wish someone would just stop and pick me up and take me to the finish." This one was different, I felt a lot of tiredness and I actually thought that it would be nice to climb into one of the support vehicles and be whisked off to the finish. However, to do that would mean a DNF and no race bling. Which was pretty cool...
Oh yeah...wine bottle stopper!
In the end, as hard as this race was, I DID enjoy it, but I don't think that I would do it again. There were a few spots along the route where the shoulder was either very narrow or non-existent and many people in Battle Ground drive BIG pick-up trucks! They also don't slow down a whole lot AND some of them might be pulling a trailer of some sort. I don't want to be the person that gets clipped by a motorist that is probably unhappy that "their" road is being taken over by runners. I know what it is like in rural Clark County. 

Finish times - Tom was just over a minute fast than the Vancouver Half and I was 2 minutes slower than Vancouver. If the sun had not been beaming down on me while I was within a mile of the finish I might have come in under 3 hours. One of the cadets who volunteered to be a course marshal near the finish called out that I was really close to the finish and I had to tell him that it wasn't close enough for me. I wished at that point that I was done, but I did it I ran through the finish because I don't believe in walking through a finish arch - that's just wrong!  I'm not going to beat myself up over this. In fact, I'm sooo over this race now. However, now we can measure all other races (until the next hard race) against this one and we can say, "Nothing can be as hard as the North County Wine run" and it would be mostly true. 

We'll be taking a few days off and allowing our bodies to rest and repair themselves. Next up will be the Hot Buttered Run on November and I do believe that it will be our last run for the year. 

A selfie waaay before the race started - we are still all smiles!

Monday, September 22, 2014


Man, I'm slacking here lately!

The last couple of weeks have been a little busy. I did have a week off, but even then I was going the whole time!

So, to end my week off Tom and I traveled to Bellingham for a 15k race, the Fairhaven Waterfront 15k. Saturday is normally our long run day, and we had 8 on the schedule...so 9 would do! Goodness those people in Bellingham must run ALL. THE. TIME! They are fast, fast, FAST! Thus the post title of GAZELLES!

I started my race out too fast and didn't necessarily run out early, but I was tired when I got to the last couple of miles. The temperature was good, but the sun was out and the one thing that I do not enjoy is having the sun beating down on me while I run. So, I was feeling the heat, except when we were along the water. I love running along the water, it was a little cooler and very pleasant. My next favorite part of the route was in the last couple of miles it was a very steady climb - BUT in the shade. Running in the shade felt soooo good...I was able to run the majority of the trail - which was packed gravel - and made it through the park with what little umph I had left. Within a quarter mile of the finish there was more gravel path and I just couldn't get it together to run anymore...so I walked the rest of the gravel and ran through the finish. Hot and tired, but I did it AND actually posted a decent time for my second 15k - about 3 minutes faster than the Shamrock 15k.

The reality of the whole matter is that Bellingham has a pretty significant running thing going on there. Not just because there's a college there or anything, EVERYONE was posting pretty fast times with the averages being in the 6-8 minute per mile range. Tom was happy to have hit his goal of a 9 minute pace...I was happy to finish, even though it doesn't look like it. My official time was 2:01:44. I'm happy with that it was about 3 minutes faster than the Shamrock - tired legs, not enough sleep and not enough time to fuel up before heading from our room to the venue - which was only across the street :)

The other thing that I liked about this particular race is that the photos were available pretty quick AND free to download. That's how it should be! I'm not looking to frame any of these shots, so why would I want to pay for these? I have purchased a digital copy just for posting here though. I made an effort to look a little happy in the first photo, not bad!

In the end it was a fun race to do and it was pretty cool to be in the midst of some pretty athletic people. I am thrilled that I wasn't last in my age division or the race over all. Overall I was #552 out of 599 runners. If we do this again I know what to look forward to, nothing will be a surprise. Although the route could change and that would mess me up!

We were only in B-ham one full day, but it was fun! Maybe we'll go back for another race...who knows.

Next up - the North County Wine Run, Half Marathon!

Thursday, September 4, 2014


It's been a little while since I last posted. I'm not sure what happened...we have been a little busy and since my last post I really hadn't been feeling like much of a runner...more like a whiner.

We have been following the training plan and actually in the previous few weeks I think that some of the training runs were mixed up a little bit. Then just as I was feeling really good about running - BAM...I hit a streak of not so great training runs.

Which caused a lot of self-doubt on my part. Maybe I am not supposed to run...I can't hardly call myself a runner if everything feels like such an effort. The last time I felt pretty good was our last 8 mile run and it felt like everything clicked and by golly I AM a runner. In the week following that run (which was all last week) I felt cra-pee. Short runs, not so short runs...nothing was good. So all the feel-goodness from that Sunday run went right out the door! This past Monday (Labor Day) we had a piddly 2 miler and you wouldn't think that it would be so bad, but I didn't feel good at all. It was maddening to me, because with that many training runs in a row that were not that great, I really wanted to feel like I wasn't a total loser.

Yesterday morning was entirely different! I don't know what happened, but I felt good the whole way! We took walking breaks at every mile which helped to keep my legs fresh. The route is what I refer to the 139th/149th Street loop - which is basically what it is - A loop. It can be a little boring, because it is predictable, so that was good for me this morning. No surprises which is good if I need to feel good about this running habit again. So, nothing out of the ordinary all the way to 10th Avenue (YESSSS!!!) Then we zig-zag our way through a neighborhood to 149th Street. The best part was running 149th Street from East to West...which is a slight down grade pretty much all the way from 4th Avenue to 14th Avenue. I really needed this route this morning! It really is a slight downhill,  but I REALLY needed to feel like something was effortless...and this was it. AND - I actually made it down the weird hill past our friend's house and up the other side of that dip.


In the end we killed it! The finish was awesome...once my watch chimed the 5th time I knew that I had made it to 5 miles! The .10 to the house would be a piece of cake, where last week it would have been a struggle.


What did I do differently? That is hard to say. I went to bed at a reasonable time, probably got to sleep between 9:00 and 9:30 last night. Melatonin helps and the fact that watching pretty much ANY show will lull me to sleep within 10-15 minutes. I know that nutrition is not a factor, but I am trying (again) to be more mindful and make better choices.

The whole getting stronger thing isn't going anywhere. I'll do Tabata if I feel that I need to do something extra. At least it comes up now and then.

Since I felt so great I'm going to share my numbers from this run - gotta love Nike+!

Time of Day:  5:05 A.M.
Distance:  5.10
Time:  1:05:15
Avg. Pace:  12:48

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Feeling Neutral

I have run 60.9 miles in these shoes...

Brooks Ghost 7
My non-New Balance shoes have proven to be a very good shoe! It took a couple of weeks to get used to these neutral shoes as they are not as rigid as my stability shoes and I think that fact may have messed with my mind a little (as well as my body).

However, in the last couple of weeks I have noticed how much better I feel during our training runs. Up until about a couple of weeks ago, I had experienced tired calves early during our runs as well as feeling very sluggish toward the end of the run. The past couple of weeks have felt GREAT! I almost feel as if I have a little more bounced in my step!

This morning as we started through Shorecrest Tom noted that I was doing great...I shushed him because I felt that would jinx the goodness that I was experiencing. I've always thought that if I am having a good run that it is a fluke and that it won't happen again. We'll see, this week has been pretty good so far. Just one more training run (8 miles) and we are another week closer to the North County Wine Run.

the shorty blip on the 19th was a walk...not a run...no running streak happening right now

All in all, if you need a neutral shoe and Brooks works for you, I would highly recommend the Ghost 7.

run, Run, RUN!

Monday, August 18, 2014

Another week...Another 4 Runs!

Another week of training has started and this week we add Thursday into the mix. Actually we have been off scheduled a little and have been doing Thursday runs anyway AND meeting with Mary too, so it's really not that much of a difference, but it is a change in how I will view each training day.

I HAVE to get up on Monday and run! Which really means I need to get to bed around 8 or 8:30 to fall asleep at a respectable hour to get enough sleep AND wake up well before it's time to run. I'll take a melatonin to get me heading to bed at an appropriate time.

SO - this morning was good! Yesterday was an okay day - I had put off our long run from Saturday to Sunday because I had a headache that just didn't want to go away. I had decided that we should run the new 139th Street Overpass. My initial thought was to run to 20th Avenue and then turn around and go back over. Once we got to the other side, it seemed wrong to not do a little loop before heading back home on 139th. There is brand new sidewalk on 134th Street between 20th and the on-ramp to I-5 North. So that was pretty cool. The rest of the route was pretty standard, going past the Fire Station, Fred Meyer and all the other stuff between Freddy's and our house. In the end we did 5.63 in 1:15:27 - according to my nike+ sport watch my pace was 13:34. I'll take it! I wasn't really expecting better than that. I'm just thrilled that it wasn't closer to 14!

Last week was really just a off week and now that it is past us, this week will be brand new and I will give all I've got to each run. A quote that continually goes through my mind while we are out is:

This is so true, this morning I decided that I would run farther than the turn around point and actually made it back to the sub-division before I stopped to walk. Today IS an easy day after all!

Our week of running has started off well and it looks like hills on Wednesday! It's been a few weeks since we have done hills...OYE...

run, Run, RUN!

Saturday, August 2, 2014

2014 Wahine All Womens

  1. 1.
    a Polynesian woman or wife, especially in Hawaii or New Zealand.

Mary, Kristen, Me & Julie
Today was the day! Mary's first "real" running event put on by AA Sports. Technically, this one is her 3rd, but this is a biggie put on by AA Sports in Portland and they do a pretty nice job putting on a multisport event - I love coming to Blue Lake and haven't been since 2011 and now I'm itchin' to get back into all three sports.

BUT...this is about Wahine.

The power went off at our house right when we were getting ready to leave so it was perfect. Coffee, showers and breakfast all done so not a big deal. Off we went to pick up Mary...we ALMOST made it a quarter mile down the road from her house when I remembered that I didn't grab my watch. Dang! Back home we go!

We met up with Mary's co-worker right after we parked it and then we became a trio. As we were milling around Kristen arrived and we all got to hang out for a while before the Du and Tri races started. While we were getting our race bibs and timing chips on another woman came up to where we were and we eventually all were chillin' together waiting for the action to start.

The Duathlon started at 8 a.m. so we saw Kristen off before heading over to the lake to watch the different waves of swimmers get started. After watching several of the wave getting started, the first swimmer was getting ready to come through the finish chute to the transition area...then pretty soon the Duathletes were coming through and about 30 minutes into the race we saw Kristen come through...looking pretty fresh really.

Now it's 8:30 and us 5k'ers make our way to the start for our race. Oh, I had decided a few minutes before that since Mary and Julie would be run/walking together that I would try to race this morning...just for the fun of it.

The race started and I actually felt pretty good for about a half mile. Then we hit the ratty beat up bike trail and it was HOT. Holy Cow! I KNOW that it gets warm going out, but this morning had to be the warmest race yet! I'm thinkin' that I might want to train a little during the warmer part of the day...somehow. So, I ended up walking...A LOT! Kind of like the last time I was there with Robin (but I had to do the run twice then). It was slow going, but once we made it past the turn-around it wasn't that terribly anymore.

So, my race ended up being just over 44 minutes and I was probably 5 minutes ahead of Mary & Julie. So after getting some water Tom and I made our way down to the other side of the finish to look for Mary...I spot both of them while they were still a distance off and met them as they were coming up the last little hill getting ready to turn to the finish. Mary wasn't looking that happy at that point and she did a little running and a little walking and a little running and finally ran through the finish arch. She did it! She finished her first 5k race put on by a bonafide race organization!

Seriously - why are you point that at me?
Yaay Julie and Mary!
Almost there!
For me it always take a few minutes to realize what just happened, but since I have a few races behind me, I know that what I'm doing is fun - even if I don't feel like it is. Well, this was true with Mary as well...after hydrating a bit and catching her breath she said she had fun! Yahoo! 

I'm so proud of Mary - she worked toward this goal, it was a little scary and seemed a little out of reach, but with some encouragement and a couple of other opportunities to be in a race situation, she did it! One day she is going to be quite the athlete and I'll probably be trying to out stay ahead, but I'll be there cheering her on and celebrating too. 

So, for next year I'm thinking that we should do the Duathlon as a team with me doing the first run and ride and Mary finishing us up! 

Wahine baby! 
More Bling to add to the collection

Monday, July 28, 2014

Week 4 and Wahine!

The end of week 3 was not so great. I got out for about 15 minutes, if that long, and realized that a 5 mile run on my own was not going to happen. Before I even reached the main road, I decided to turn around and go back home. I'm getting better about my training runs though. If I don't feel that great I don't need to beat myself up if I want to turn around and go back home. At least I gave it a chance. As it turns out I didn't want to get out yesterday either. So, no long run in week 3.

Week 4 - well this week is all easy running. I'm SO excited!!! Mostly because I don't want to get all sore and tired before Saturday and have a bad experience with Mary...Wahine baby!

Okay, so I'm a little excited - it's almost Wahine time! It's been a 3 years since I have been to the All Women's event at Blue Lake and I'm really looking forward to getting back into this particular event/venue. Blue Lake is a favorite with us - Tom and I  have done the Duathlon during the June event and then Robin and I teaming up to do the Duathlon at All Women's - oh and me doing a couple of Tri's there the last year that we were there. Man! It would be nice to get back into multisport, maybe see if I can get someone else to join the fun - perhaps Mary could  run the 2nd 5k on her own while I do the first run and ride - THAT is a definite possibility for 2015.

Until then, Mary and I will be running the all new Hula Girl 5k together (there is also a 10K). She's been getting her running groove back and has been using those running shoes more often in the past few months. I'm so proud of her and the progress that she has made! In June we did the Marriage Team event together and my goodness when we are not running she is walking REALLY fast and I'm doing a bit of a fast shuffle run just to keep up with her. I was not blessed with the legs that go speedy while walking...it's almost like I'm a little kid trying to keep up with my mom at the grocery store or something. That's the great thing about Mary, she has a lot of get up and go when she wants to! So blessed to have a friend who is game enough to try new things!

Here's to an easy running week and a quick race on Saturday.

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Week 3 and New Shoes!

We have started week 3 of training and we are a little off track. I think some of the problem might be from the fact that I got myself a new pair of shoes...

The fact that they are new shoes isn't the problem, the difference this time around is that I decided to have another gait analysis and the dude that I was working with decided that I didn't need a stability shoe and that I could get away with running in a neutral shoe. Huh...interesting. So, I went with his recommendation and starting wearing them this past weekend on our long run. Didn't feel bad, but I could tell there was a difference. Then on Monday I was still sore from running Saturday and ended up running less than the plan and then made up the difference on Tuesday. Yesterday I was feeling tired and sore so we took the day off - aaahhhh.

Now, we have been switching up our tempo runs for hills, which the next half will have plenty of and so that happened today. A day of rest really made all he difference and here I am a few hours later and still feel pretty good. Saturday will be another 5 mile run, no problem!

Tom and I were talking about how fast the next 9 weeks will go - REAL fast! I feel like we just started...which we did, but with the weeks being so busy and all our weekends filling up fast, we WILL be running Half Marathon #3 (for me) before we know it!

Weeeeee!!!! Get out and move!!!!

Monday, July 7, 2014

Half Marathon #3

Well, this is it...I've started training for my 3rd half marathon. This will be the third on in less than 10 months. I think that next year will be a little different and I'll just do a couple of halfs. Definitely the Vancouver USA half, but I'll leave the second one open until I find another favorite race to do.

I've got my training runs all dialed into RunningAhead.com and it has already started sending me reminder emails for upcoming runs. How considerate!

I know that this next half will feature more hills than Vancouver so we are going to focus on hills every other week and probably throw a hill in here and there because we really can't help it where we are. I might even do some core exercises and some other strength moves to make myself believe that I'm getting better.

So, week 1 has begun and this morning was pretty good. Although our route with a section of non-asphalt, non-sidewalk is going to be messed up...I'm hoping that the trail will still be gravelly and not asphalt when they are done working on it. Speedwork is up next!

run, Run, RUN!

Training Tools

For my birthday last month I received a nifty new sport watch...go HERE. Then I posted about the new stuff HERE. I do love me a gadget and if it's a running related type gadget even better! 

So my first post I was concerned that the darn thing would be more of a distraction than a help. Which it kinda was. I did a fair amount of playing with it during my half marathon. THEN I realized how much information that device packs...a lot! I get my pace, avg pace, elapsed time and distance as well as a history, records and other fun stuff. NOW I can see what my pace is and what my average is in a very short period of time AND during my run. Not only does it show me all of that information - once I get home and upload the information to my computer...more information is made available. HOLY COW...who know fitness could be so much fun?!

So, since my watch is GPS I get a map of the route that we ran AND when you review the route and let it run, it will show what your pace was at any given point during the run and it will also be color coded. The quicker you run the more green you'll see if you slow down it will turn to yellow if you REALLY slow down (walk) then you get a big ol' red section on the route. It's cool and not so cool at the same time. I had to get over myself pretty quick as I post my stats to facebook from the nike website. Because if anyone were to click on the map it would "fly" through the route and show just how slow I go. I might be slow, but I get out there and do it...HA!

The thing that I really don't like would be the red sections on my route. Depending on the day, I might have a few spots or just a couple. Today was just a couple because I REALLY didn't want that much red on my map! 

So what this watch is turning out to be is a giant kick in the rear! Toward the end of my last training plan I did a fair amount of brain training - telling myself that I CAN do a certain section of the training or make it up the hill or make it another mile or whatever. If I gave in every time I felt something unpleasant I won't see any improvement. Now that I don't like red on my maps I'll be training even better than before. 

As we start our next training plan I hope to see more improvements over the next 12 weeks. Maybe I'll take another 10 minutes off my last half marathon time. 

2014 Independence Run

Me, Tom, Judy, Norm and Suzy
The 2014 Independence Run has come and gone and it was a good one! Not only did Tom get to run this year (he was out the last couple of years) our barista friend Suzy and a couple that we knew from our Federal Highways days also ran. Suzy's hubby was in attendance, but opted not to run.

Before the event started, there was a kids dash...which we got NO pictures of this year...the kids are so cute out running like crazy. Love that Ridgefield is a small town and that closing down main street is pretty easy!

Right after the kids dash we all got situated at the start. Since Tom runs his own race and would be "racing" Suzy he disappeared and was in the first half of people running. I stayed near the back so that there wouldn't be nearly as many people passing me - little miss poke-along...haha. The gun went off and then we were let loose.

About a half mile in I lost all sight of Tom and just settled into a pace that I could maintain until we started up the big hill. I felt pretty good for the first mile, but once the hill started getting a little steeper I was walking more than running, but still moving forward, because that is the goal. To keep moving! After about 15 minutes I saw Suzy and we high 5'd as we passed each other. I was a little surprised because Tom was so intent on trying to stay ahead of her. Then a short distance up the road I spied Tom coming around the corner...and I told him that I just passed Suzy and he was aware of that :(

The rest of the run from that point was pretty much how it always goes. To the turn around and then back down, down, down the hill and then one last climb to Main Street and then a half mile jaunt to the finish. The longest finish straight ever!

My goal was to finish with a faster time over last year's time. Which I did, by 36 seconds...I think. I'm not sure what the official time is, but my watch was telling me that I was about 37:59. We'll see what gets posted later.

While I may have taken time off of my last year's time...everyone else got 2nd place in their respective age divisions. I guess I'm going to have to get older if I am going to get 2nd in anything!

Tom is the only one paying attention!
The ribbons were a little cheap-o, but hey, bragging rights baby! Now that Tom is back at it...maybe we'll be doing this running thing together for a good long time!

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

96 Degrees

Temperature at this very moment is 96 Degrees. Yesterday I was unhappy with running when it was 81 Degrees. 81 will feel like a piece of cake next time. I really don't enjoy HOT weather. If I don't have to go and do anything outside when it is really hot I won't. We get so few really HOT days that when we do we all turn into big babies...no joke. How do people in the South or the Midwest do it?! I suppose if you had to, you could get used to anything. 

I guess I'll try to get a good night's rest tonight so we can be out nice and early tomorrow morning for our RUN! Will try to push out 3 miles and add some hills just for the fun of it...and to prepare just a little for the 4th of July run in Ridgefield. Never fails, every year I tell myself I'll do more hills after whatever event we did in June and then don't. At least I'll be consistent!

Let's take a looky-loo at the 7 day forecast...

Monday, June 30, 2014

Takin' It Easy

It's been a couple of weeks since the Vancouver Half and we have been taking a bit of a break. Which is very refreshing. We have been getting out to run here and there and I'll get out as soon as I get home, no matter how warm it is (within reason).

The past few days I have had an issue with my allergies and that has REALLY slowed down my desire to run. I had hoped to run on Thursday last week, but with all the drips, watery eyes and a touch of congestion, I thought better of it and decided to just chill. I didn't chill for long and ended up getting out early yesterday morning. Yeah...can't keep a crazy person down! Today hasn't been too bad, still drippy, but I'm sure that a couple of miles won't kill me.

Late last week I sent off my registration for the Wahine All Women's event on August 2nd and today the registrations for the 4th of July run and the North County Wine Run both went out. I'M SO EXCITED!!! Even though the past few days have been iffy, I really am looking forward to starting the training plan for the North County Wine Run (half). There are a couple of other events that we are planning, but I wanted to make sure that I had these three sent in. The next closest one would be the Fairhaven 15k (Bellingham) on September 13. That will be our "destination run" hahaha. Fairhaven is so nice that it will be a nice break from SW Washington.

So, I haven't totally disappeared...just planning and  plotting and getting ready to run again.