March 31, 2010

Burrito Powered

I tend to write about hardcore workouts, exciting races, and new routes on this blog BUT there are also off days and down runs. Yesterday I woke up feeling completely drained, and my legs felt oddly sore :( Of course, I even worried about being overtrained.

So, I took a rest day. I drank lots of water and tea. And I ate a giant burrito in SF---with enough chicken, beans, and guacamole inside for a herd of horses. It was delish and very satisfying. This morning, I ran 14 miles and felt energetic the entire way. I think my legs were thanking me for the extra fuel! I think I made a good decision to postpone that medium long run and feel ready to cruise through the rest of the week of training!

March 29, 2010

End of March

Somehow, it's already the last week of March, and there's just over a month until race day! That means 2 more weeks of serious training, followed by 3 weeks of tapering. I'm feeling strong, and I think my body has adapted pretty well to the higher mileage training. Of course, I also hope that all of this training will contribute to a great race in May :)

This week of training is a cutback week but includes some solid speed workouts.

On tap:
  • 14 mile medium long run
  • track workout with 400s, 800s, and 1200s
  • steady state run
  • 14-16 mile long run

March 27, 2010

Marathon Pace in Golden Gate Park

I'm reporting back after a confidence building long pace workout. In honor of Jenica's birthday, we ran 20 miles with 9 miles at goal marathon pace (my best guess is that my pace range should be 8:45-55 minutes per mile). My first 3 mile set averaged 8:48, while the second averaged 8:41....For the final 3 mile set, I ran 8:35 with the final mile at 8:28 pace! Woot!!

Tomorrow, I will be watching and cheering on runners at the Oakland Marathon near mile 23. Looking forward to screaming & handing out treats to folks running through the streets of my city!

March 26, 2010

Cooking up a new workout

Tomorrow's long run will involve a new type of pace workout. Testing out a new workout is always interesting because it's hard to tell how hard a workout will be till you translate it from paper to the road. I designed a workout with 3 sets of 3 miles at goal marathon pace. So, Jenica and I will be running 3 miles at an easy, long run pace and then 3 miles at marathon pace, then back to easy 3 and pace 3, and, finally, 3 more easy and pace 3. We'll add 2 more easy miles at the end to get to 20 miles. Whew!

On today's recovery run, I decided that I wanted to think of the three sets of pace miles as distinct goals within one, big workout. Each set of miles will have its own flavor. And I thought about a feast that includes appetizers, a main course, and dessert and imagined the first set of pace miles as an appetizer, then the next set as the main course, and the final set as dessert. To make it concrete, I'll enjoy guacamole with chips, then eggplant parmesan, and, for dessert, a big ice cream sundae :P I'm crossing my fingers that tomorrow's workout will be delish!!

March 25, 2010

Movie time

To boost our mileage, Jenica and I completed two medium long runs this week--of 13 and 12 miles. I decided to try a new route by heading up to Park Boulevard and then down and around Lake Merritt; I covered the highs and lows of Oakland! I also chose to bring my camera along for the run and snapped a few good photos :)

So, here's a little movie of me hauling myself up a fine, fine hill (please tilt your head :O):

March 24, 2010

A Few Good Goals

I've been training quite consistently for over two years (thanks to Jenica's nutsarella idea in February of 2007 to run a 50K trail ultramarathon!), and I think it's time to chase down some big goals. I also realize that running is now a part of my life, and I definitely missed the serious training when I was on vacation last week. That means that I'm committed to keep on truckin' toward faster times and new challenges as a runner :)

  1. Run a sub-1:46 Half marathon (8:02 pace) in the next year
  2. Complete a marathon training cycle with 3 (or more) 60+ mile weeks
  3. Race a 10K (sub-50 minutes) to figure out my overall fitness
** I promise I'll set a marathon PR goal as soon as I run Avenue of the Giants! Till then, I want to stay healthy as a marathoner and complete key workouts while having a blast!

March 22, 2010

Back to Spring

This afternoon's run was fabulous because I got to soak up miles worth of sunshine and enjoy tons of colorful blooms. The Oakland hills were alive with springtime! I'm actually looking forward to this high mileage week, since I know it will help me reach my goals at Avenue.

On tap for this week:
medium long run- 13 miles AND 10 miles (it's time to get over 55 miles per week!)
long pace run- 20 miles with 3 X 3 miles at goal marathon pace (this is a new type of pace run)
cheering for runners in the Oakland Marathon on Sunday :)

March 21, 2010

River time

Yesterday was a trip down memory lane. Our training plan called for 14 miles with 6 at pace, and I was staying with my parents in East Tennessee. So, I woke up early--in the dark--had toast and a quick cup of coffee and drove down to the Oak Ridge Marina.

I ran about 6.5 miles through the neighborhoods where I used to do my weekend running during my seasons of high school cross country & track! Then I headed down to the Clinch River greenway for 6 miles of goal marathon pace runnin'. There were a few moments that felt tougher than usual but other moments felt on target. I used some of my favorite mantras: Make yourself proud; You're lucky to be doing this; One more mile; Go time; This is it.....All in all, the 6 miles were in my pace zone of 8:43-8:53, and my last 2 miles were sub 8:40.

In the afternoon, I hung out with a dear, dear teammate from cross country--who was an all-Knoxville & all-state runner. It was a blast! Go, Kathy, go :>

ps- Next week is hammer time...I'll write about THAT tomorrow :)

March 17, 2010


We're on vacation on the east coast. That means decadent meals and creative versions of marathon training.....I've run on the hilly streets of Asheville, NC and on a hotel treadmill :O Since Asheville is located at about 2200 feet, I'm considering those runs as extra-challenging-at altitude workouts ;) I look forward to getting some solid runs in while in Oak Ridge and Knoxville, TN!

March 11, 2010

Apres run

Today's 20 miler went great, and I wanted to share my post-workout routine:

After long runs, I walk a bit and guzzle some water. Then I stretch and work on my quads, hamstrings, etc. Next, I try to eat something right away---sometimes a banana or granola bar or almonds (today, I scarfed down most of a Powerbar protein bar plus a big latte). I try to keep drinking water all day. Today I also partook in a cold water bath to freeze my leggies, and it worked :O Some vitamin I (aka Advil) tends to help me hobble around the house! And usually more eating is in order, as well.

Now I need to do some reading and/or snacking....

March 10, 2010


This morning, I lacked the will and oomph to exit the bed and do my tempo run. This afternoon, my motivation was low. Thank goodness, Jenica came to the rescue!! She reminded me, via Google chat & an e-card, that I had a workout to tackle. The happy ending to this story is that I nailed the tempo: 8:18, 8:08, and 7:56 :> Running buddies are a terrific source of motivation.

March 8, 2010

Week of March 8

It's only Monday afternoon, but I already feel like I've had a productive running week. On Sunday, I ran an easy 10 miles and took in the diverse sights and sounds around a sunshine drenched Lake Merritt. There were families walking, kids biking, older folks jogging, and everything in between. To accommodate (aka squeeze in) all my workouts before flying to Tennessee at the end of the week, I did a medium long run of 12 miles today. My body felt fine, which is almost shocking since I've run over 36 miles in 3 days!

Later this week, I'll do a tempo run and another 20 miler, and then it'll be time for a vacation-cutback week ;)

March 6, 2010

The Garm ate my data!

I promise I'm not making up these paces or nuttin'....I ran a bit over 14 miles in Golden Gate park and along the Great Highway. And the 5 pace miles felt terrific, with all of them speedier than my 8:55 goal marathon pace, plus several miles sub 8:45.

BUT- while Garmalade was syncing with my new laptop it deleted today's training data :( So, I manually entered my mileage, noted my pace, and am moving on with the weekend!

March 3, 2010

Less than

Now it's less than two months until I bond with 26.2 miles of magnificent trees!

March 2, 2010


This week of marathon training included a 14 mile midweek run, which is definitely a record medium-long run for me! I decided to go down to Alameda to run the 14 miler, since there are nice and flat routes along the waterfront.

Of course, it was raining off and on during my run. I was really happy that I chose to wear my Marmot lightweight rain jacket because it ended up saving me from hypothermia. I'm also sure its bright orange color made me more visible in traffic. Around mile 9, when it was pouring rain, I imagined that the jacket was a rescue-flotation vest that would whisk me away to safety. At that point, I felt about as soaked as a swimmer, and was thinking about whether or not I'd ever consider doing a triathlon.

Also on tap for this week: a track workout AND a long run (only 14 miles) with 5 miles at goal marathon pace.
There was an error in this gadget