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Sunday, February 28, 2010

The Ups and Downs

This week has had some good and some bad.  Nothing terrible, but it still had more downs than I like.  I’m trying to make the best of it.

Down:  I’ve been exhausted all week.  I tend to get this way when I have something big coming up (see next Up).
Up: We had a great Fancy Nancy Birthday Party for Punky’s fifth birthday.

Down:  My stomach bug apparently isn’t gone. 
Up:  I have been drinking lots of water to stay hydrated.

Down:  I only ran ~9 miles last week (see previous two downs for reasoning).
Up:  I have 8 planned for tomorrow, so I’ll do better this week.

Down:  I am way behind on my Google Reader.
Up:  I’m way behind because my new computer arrived and I’ve been figuring out how to use it.

Down:  ADP is traveling.
Up:  I plan on getting lots of miles in tomorrow, lots of sleep every night (I’m always tired after being a solo parent so I crash early), and will consume a little extra wine while he’s away.

Down:  My muscles hurt.
Up:  I don’t have ITB syndrome!  I have a weak left hip so the PT is working with me to help strengthen it.  And, while we are at it I have a bunch of core exercises to do with some push-ups added in for good measure.  

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

2 Days then PT

Thank you for all your kind words after the 3-Person Marathon Relay.  Your words really helped me and I appreciate your comments more than I can properly put to words. 

I woke up this morning with tight muscles (but not sore) and my stomach is finally feeling better.  It has been two days since the marathon relay and as hoped, the snow held off for the relay!  Today, it is snowing and I couldn't be happier.  My legs were tight so I did a slow four miles on the treadmill this morning.  I'm not good with rest, that is for sure.  Well...that or I'm avoiding studying for my next state exam (it isn't until April). 

There were a few reasons I wanted to run this morning.
  1. I'm not good at taking time off.
  2. I didn't stretch after the relay, so my muscles were tighter than usual yesterday and this morning.
  3. I needed to get moving to see if my stomach could handle it.
  4. And, I go to physical therapy tonight and the last thing I wanted was for my legs to be extremely tight.
Yes, I'm going to PT.  When I was running in November I ran over the edge of the road wrong and my IT-band instantly started hurting.  I took some time off (see point 1...this was very hard for me).  I rested and I iced.  I was probably a pain in the rear to live with.  All was going well and I was feeling better so I started running again.  The thing is that my ITB intermittently hurt (sometimes after 2 miles, sometimes I could finish 10 miles without pain).  I started paying attention to when it hurt and now that my long races are done for a while I'm going to PT in hopes that I can run pain free for a lot longer.  So tonight I go to PT when ADP gets home for work.  I don't know what to expect, but I hope it is what I need to help get rid of the pain forever.

This Week's Plan:
Monday:  rest (done)
Tuesday:  4 miles easy (done)
Wednesday:  rest
Thursday:  5 miles*
Friday:  rest
Saturday:  6 miles*
Sunday:  rest

*Dependent on what the PT says.

Don't forget to check out the giveaways on the sidebar and this Running Essentials giveaway.

Monday, February 22, 2010

A Windy Relay Race Report

The marathon relay is done and there is a lot to tell. The race started at 10 a.m. on Sunday morning, but to get the whole gist of the weekend we need to rewind to 20 hours before the race. Saturday I started to have some lower GI issues. Knowing the race was the next day, I did my best to keep drinking fluids and to not alter my diet too much. I went to bed early with stomach pains and eventually fell asleep. When I woke up Sunday morning the troubles had moved up my GI tract and my muscles ached. Great (insert sarcasm). I laid in bed and listened to the wind whip around the house and through the trees. Just great (insert more sarcasm). I did what I usually do before a race; I drank water, had my normal breakfast and then got ready, all the while trying to ignore my stomach.

I was first to get to the race, so I checked our team in. It wasn’t too long and Felice and Amanda were there. I went out to warm up and saw them right before the race when this picture was taken.



10:05 (a few minutes late) the race started, it was 30F and north winds ~15 mph and all was going fine. Too bad I had to run more than one mile because my body would have been good with only one mile yesterday (my leg totaled 9.2 miles). The race course is the same loops I’ve been running for the Winter Series, so I’d been out there four times before and knew what I was getting into. Going away from the start the wind was at our backs. Going toward the start/end we were going straight into the north wind. So, not only was my stomach hurting, but with going away from the wind (getting hot)/into the wind (feeling cold) I was going back and forth between hot/cold and it felt exactly like the flu. (Thankfully, as far as I can tell I don’t have the flu – I think it was something I ate.) Who in their right mind runs when they feel like they have the flu? Apparently me. One more thing wasn’t working right: my mp3 player crapped out a couple weeks ago so I had limited and very un-motivating songs to listen to.

I plowed on and missed my goal time (87 mins) and my max time (92 mins). I finished in 1:37:35 and watched Felice run off for her leg of the race. Fortunately, I was done running. Unfortunately, I felt like the Gu Chomps I took at mile 4 were going to come back up for most of the rest of the day. I apologized to Amanda for taking so long. I later apologized to Felice for the same. I felt bad for taking longer than expected, but they both said it was fine and I’m taking their word on it. Yesterday wasn’t my day, but I did the best I could given the conditions.
Felice finishing her leg of the race; Amanda half-way through her leg of the race

I went out to cheer on Felice as she finished her leg of the race. We cheered on Amanda when she did loop 1. We were back out in the cold for Amanda when she finished the race. 3 blogging mamas, all wearing pink finished the marathon relay in 4:22:59! Here’s a final photo of the three of us once we were all finished and happy to have accomplished one more awesome (albeit cold and windy) running event.




Congrats to the other crazies out there. 90 people ran the full marathon and there were 59 relay teams. I can only assume we are all crazy because it is WINTER and we were out there running a race.

Friday, February 19, 2010

Friday Fanfare, 2/19

Welcome to all the new followers!! It is exciting having you here. The month is short and all of a sudden we have less than 10 days left.  I don't know about you, but next week is a busy one for me.  Good luck to all the runners and racers this weekend.

Denise is running the Frostbite 5 Miler (no frostbite, OK?)
Emily is running the Birch Bay Marathon (last minute decision to run)
AJH is running a half-marathon on the ocean in NH (her first winter half)
OneLittleTriGirl is running the 1/2 Donna (enjoy the warm weather in FL)
Stephanie is running the HMRRC Winter Marathon (her almost halfway marathon)
And Felice and Amanda my marathon relay buddies

Leave a comment if you want to be included in my Friday Fanfare.  Also, don't forget to stop by the giveaways listed in the sidebar.

On a related note, I'll be back Sunday or Monday with a race report for my much anticipated 3-Person Marathon Relay this Sunday (well, it is much anticipated for me!).

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

6, 5, 4

This morning while I was on the treadmill I had so many things I wanted to post about. Now, I can only think of one or two things. Why does that happen?

Monday I ran ~6 miles, today I ran ~5 miles, and on Friday I’ll do ~4 miles. I figure it will work well with my schedule this week. This morning’s treadmill run went really quickly because I started watching Spirit of the Marathon. It is a good documentary about six runners training for the Chicago Marathon. I’ll finish the movie on Friday morning when I hop on the treadmill again.



AJH tagged me to receive an award. Thank you!! Now I need to pass it on to 12 blog friends who bring me sunshine and let them know with a comment.

My 3-person marathon relay buddies, Amanda and Felice
A few who live(d) in my home state of Wisconsin, Badgergirl, Jamie, and Velma
Going for amazing, Stephanie
Blogs I like reading, OneLittleTriGirl, Jenn, J, Katie, Mark, and Tricia

If you've already been tagged...you are tagged again.  :)

Monday, February 15, 2010

Stubbornness Aside

Thursday was a teaser; I could almost breathe through my nose (both nostrils) for part of the day. It wasn’t meant to last because by Friday morning I felt worse. Saturday morning I did manage to muddle through a four mile run on the treadmill, but it was almost torturous. Sunday I was even worse off so I put my stubbornness aside and went to the doctor. I have my first sinus infection of 2010. If previous years are any indicator then I have three more to go this year. Armed with ibuprofen (for the headache) and amoxicillin (for the infection) I settled down to watch the Daytona 500. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again – NASCAR is merely a Sunday substitute until it is warm enough to dig in the gardens which tides me over until football starts again.

Fast forward 19 hours to Monday morning, 5:20 a.m. I wasn’t sure what to expect this morning when I got the treadmill and I certainly wasn’t expecting to run my best run in over two weeks. It felt great to run a strong 6.25 miles this morning. My run certainly eased some of my anxiousness about my leg of the race this weekend. I plan to be back at 100% by the time I need to run 9.2 miles on Sunday morning.

This week:
Monday: 6 miles (done, 6.44 mi w/cool down)
Tuesday: rest
Wednesday: 6 miles
Thursday: rest
Friday: 4 miles
Saturday: rest
Sunday: 3-Person Marathon Relay, 9.2 mile leg

Friday, February 12, 2010

Friday Fanfare

Welcome to all the new followers!! It is exciting having you here and I can’t believe there are more than 50 of you. Leave me a comment and I’ll stop by your blog and say hi!

February is here in full force. Do you have any plans for Valentine’s Day? I think I’m going all out this year and making a card for ADP instead of buying one. When I say “making a card” I don’t mean all pretty and creative (I’m not all that creative); I’m thinking of cutting a heart out of a piece of paper and writing something sappy on it. Hmmm…I wonder if we even have colored paper here. Oh well, ADP is going to get a white heart (sorry honey).

Good luck to all the runners and racers this weekend.
  • Stephanie is running the Myrtle Beach Marathon (if you haven’t stopped by her blog, you need to – the girl is going for the recordbooks)
  • RunningLaur is running The Lost Duchman Half Marathon (3rd half in 3 weeks!!)
  • Julie is running the Lace Up Against Breast Cancer Half (her 2nd half and looking for a PR)
My Friday Fanfare race calendar continues to fill up. Leave a comment if you want to be included and I’ll add you to my calendar. Also, don't forget to stop by the giveaways listed in the sidebar.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Three Things Thursday

  1. I'm finally getting over this cold, at least I can breath through one nostril today!  I hope to get back to running this weekend. 
  2. 10 days!  Yes, the three person marathon relay I'm participating in is only 10 days away.  What do we do with 10 days left?  We completely change who is running each leg of the race.  The latest is that I'm running the 9.2 mile leg (hence the reason I hope to get back running this weekend...I need to).
  3. I'm bummed this year.  All the snow is falling south of us.  I don't live in the north so that we miss all the snow.  I live in the north so we get snow and lots of it (OK, so the snow isn't the only reason we live here...but it certainly helps).  ADP sent me an e-mail this morning letting me know that we are 18" under the normal snowfall amounts so far this year.  Serious bummer in my world.  Dear Mother Nature, please dump massive amounts of snow on us after the marathon relay.  Sincerely, Suzy

Monday, February 8, 2010

A Little Shopping

Completing the Winter Race Series successfully helped me decide I needed to reward myself. I didn’t feel like going shopping (it isn’t my favorite activity), but I managed to make it to JC Penney to buy a few things. I started by getting some things for the kids because I always get things for the kids. Then I hit the shoe section. Next fall I’ll be student teaching and I need some suitable brown shoes to wear to work; I found some that will work fine. Then, I was on to treating myself. I found a pair of knee high brown leather boots that fit perfectly! I just had to have them. Thank goodness they were on sale.

My new shoes are tucked away because I have no where to go today. Actually, I don’t have a lot of extra things to do this week so I don’t know if they’ll come out of the closet or not. It is good to have an easy week because I’m still not over this cold. So, my goal this week is to feel better. I tried running this morning and didn’t even have the energy to finish four miles. When that happens I know it is time to step back, hydrate, sleep, and take good care of me. On top of getting better there will be lots of stretching. During yesterday’s race my ITB started hurting a little. I need it to be in good form because in less than two weeks I’ll be participating in a 3-person relay.

What have you done to treat yourself lately?

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Winter Wimp Award + Race Recap

I made it to the Winter Series Race #5 this morning and chose to run the 4 miler. When I got there I found out the advertised 4 miler was actually 4.34 miles – no biggie, but still! 17F with 12 mph winds = a cold run. I don’t run outside when it is below 20, so this was a new experience for me.

I did a 1 mile warm-up. Thank goodness I did because by .25 miles I realized I needed some more warmth. I ran to the car and grabbed my extra mittens (I wore my lululemon gloves under my mittens) and a bandana to cover my chin and neck. When my mile was done I still wasn’t warm but my muscles were warm enough to stretch.

4.34 miles in 41:35 for an average pace of 9:35/mi.  I’m happy with my time. It was cold and I had no great desire to go fast today. My laps were even enough (9:53, 9:23, 9:51, and 9:40) because mile 2 is almost all downhill. The first two miles were away from the wind and I got hot. The remainder was into the wind! One of my new goals is to finish my races strong and I did…0.34 mi at a 7:59 pace! I like it.

I finished with a .65 mi cool down for a grand total of 6.0 miles for today.

Part of the reason I was determined to go to the race today is because the series is five races long. If you participate in all five and volunteer in at least one you get a Winter Wimp Award. Check It Out:

I have myself a new pen holder that seems to do everything and then some.  HMRRC is the running club that I belong to and because I belong I was able to race all five races for FREE!!  Everyone else had to pay $5/race, so it was a great savings.

HEED Giveaway Winner

The giveaway is done so I went to random.org and let it do the hard work for me.  I entered the number of entries (32) and it spit out #22.  I counted once and counted twice and both times Running Diva Mom was #22 so she must be the winner of the HEED.

Congratulations!

Please drop me an e-mail (suzypris @ gmail (dot) com) and I’ll get the HEED out to you.

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Giveaway Reminder

Don't forget to enter my HEED giveaway here.  Giveaway ends tomorrow, 2/7 at 10am ET.

I'm off for a busy day of everything except exercising.  I'm still holding out hope that I feel well enough to run the 10 mile race tomorrow for the last of the Winter Series that I've participated in.  If I feel like I do right now I'll be running the 4 mile race instead.  I think it is OK to run the shorter distance because I'll be running outside tomorrow and the distance does not matter as much as the outside factor.

Friday, February 5, 2010

Friday Fanfare

Welcome to all the new followers!! It is exciting having you here and I can’t believe there are more than 50 of you. Leave me a comment and I’ll stop by your blog and say hi!

February is here in full force. How was your January? Do you have anything great on the books for February? I’d love to hear so leave a comment.

Good luck to all the runners and racers this weekend.

AJH is running the Polar Cap 4 Miler (stay warm!)
RunningLaur is running the Sedona Half Marathon (her second half in two weeks)
Molly is running the Chilly Chili 5K (do they serve chili at the finish line?)
Becca is running the Kaiser Half Marathon (you are one of the few staying warm)
All the runners at the local HMRRC Winter Series Race #5

My Friday Fanfare race calendar continues to fill up. Leave a comment if you want to be included and I’ll add you to my calendar. Also, don't forget to stop by the giveaways listed in the sidebar.

Thursday, February 4, 2010

On the Topic of Books

I like to read books, and lots of them.  Last year was the first year I kept track of how many books I read and I somehow managed to read 63 novels.  The sad part about this is that only one was related to running and it wasn't even about running (The Memory of Running by Ron McLarty).  This year I want to read at least a book or two about running.  If you could suggest only two books for someone to read about running, what would you suggest?

And, since this is a running blog - I managed to run a very long and slightly painful 6.33 miles this morning.  Long because the run seemed to be never ending.  Slightly painful because I have another cold and my throat is scratchy and sore.  I seem to be on the two weeks healthy - two weeks with a cold schedule.  I love winter but I'm looking forward to summer because I tend to be healthier.  I digress...books and 6.33 miles all in a days work.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Skipped a Step

I have been attending an educational series hosted at our local Fleet Feet (sponsored by Mizuno).  I have taken some great ideas away from the series already and it isn't finished.  Tonight is all about "preventing" upper leg injuries.  I say "preventing" because last week it was "preventing" lower leg injuries and the PT talked about what to do if you hurt your ankle/foot and went over some of the more common running injuries; I don't think what he talked about is prevention.  The PT said he would cover common ITB, hip, and knee problems; I'm all over that given that my ITB still randomly hurts.

One duh moment I had was during a stretching class and the PT talked about professional athletes.  I'm not a professional; I am an amateur runner who happens to love it.  Regardless, the PT said that professional athletes always ice after exercising whether they are hurting or not.  So, I have started taking 10 minutes after I run to ice my ITB where it connects near my knee (where it always used to hurt).  The few hours after running are no longer spent avoiding going up and down stairs because there is no discomfort or pain near my knee and in my ITB.  Today, I was running behind and I skipped icing.  MISTAKE.  I haven't been avoiding stairs, but I can't say I'm comfortable.  From now on I'm making sure I have the time to ice and if I don't have time, I'll make it.

Today:  5.46 treadmill run

Monday, February 1, 2010

February Giveaway

Simple.  Sweet.  Easy to enter.

Six Hammer Nutrition HEED (High Energy Electrolyte Drink) mixes are yours for the winning.  Flavors are:  2 melon, strawberry, mandarin orange, unflavored, and lemon-lime.  All you have to do to enter is be a follower and leave a comment that you are a follower.  Easy and simple. 

Giveaway ends 2/7 at 10am ET.  Winner will be picked using a random generator.  Good luck to all. 

Disclaimer:  *Kelly (and Hammer Nutrition) sent these products to me to try and give away.