2013 Review & 2014 Day Dreaming


What to say?


In 2013, I went up, I went down, I went up again, I went down again, I held steady for a while, I went up some more, and then I went back down. It was a ride for sure!

January - I was getting fit, but I was hurting. My weekly mileage was in the upper 30's, long runs ranged from 10-13 miles, I was doing hills and tempos, and I was cross training a lot. I also start physical therapy this month for my ankle and quad, which the doctors decided was all soft tissue.

February - I was on my butt. I went with my gut and asked my doctor to put in a referral for a full body bone scan, so it would get my femur and ankle. My foot & ankle doctor and orthopaedic doctor's solution was not working. Bone scan came back positive for a stress reaction/ stress fracture in both my right ankle and left femur. No core, no cross training, minimal walking for the full month.

March - I came out of hiding and found my spot in the gym again (still not on the roads). I stuck to gentle cardio and upper body strength training. The cardio was very gentle and nothing with full weight bearing or high resistance.

April - I stepped it up a little more. This time I added full body strength training, higher resistance cardio, and walking for exercise. I was gaining confidence the healing process, which was my quickest bone recovery yet. It was also the first time I sat on my butt for recovery instead of attempting to cross train, etc.

May - I fell in love with Group X classes at 24 Hour Fitness. Cycle, BodyPump, Spin & Strength, and PiYo kept me in shape. I was still walking for exercise, I attended 1 to 2 Group X classes per day, and I even sprinkled in a couple 1 to 2 mile runs. You should also check out this post from May for a good laugh.

June - Back on the roads!!! I started the most conservative "return to running" plan I've ever done. And it worked! I started the month with only ten miles for the week and finished things out with 20 miles. I never ran more than two days in a row this month, and I certainly didn't have any workouts! Still loving my Group X classes.

July - This was my second month back. I made it up to 24 miles this week (still being very conservative) and I added a couple quality days and strides. This is the last month I did my Group X classes. My final workout for July was a 6M progression run which went from 7:50 down to 7:08.

August - Still just inching my way up. This time my peak weekly mileage was 28. My final workout for the month was another 6M progression run, this time it was 8:21, 7:41, 7:23, 7:09, 6:52, 6:40 (7:20 avg). I started seeing a Chiropractor for ART on my quad since it was still hurting. I also started using some nutritional products that gave me natural energy and reduced my recovery time.

September - I made another tiny jump in mileage, this time working my way up to a 31 mile week. My final week of this month I had a 5k race in some nasty conditions and ended up averaging 6:18 pace. It wasn't the most ideal return to racing, but you can read about it here.

October - Finally getting somewhere! Still only a minor increase in mileage, maxing out at 34 miles per week, but my fitness was improving. Final workout of the month was five mile cut-down where I averaged 6:47 pace! Still getting ART done twice per week!

November - I felt like a runner again! I finally ran six days per week! My peak weekly mileage increased by two more, putting me at 36 miles for one of the weeks. By this point I was doing two workouts each week, in addition to a relaxed "long" run. My last workout of the month was 4 x 1M repeats, for which I averaged 6:17 pace.

December - I had to remember how to listen to myself again. I started having hip problems early in the month. I switched to soft surfaces for all but one of my runs each week, but still had to take a week of rest at the end of the month. Regardless, my fitness was continuing to improve. I jumped all the way up to 50 miles one week, and my final workout was 5 x 1M repeats, for which I averaged 6:15 pace.

There you have it!

In 2014, I want to be a little more ambitious with my training, but I also want to be smart about it. Looking over my training logs from some of my most successful training seasons, I spent A LOT of time on the small things. Cross training for extra cardio, weight lifting to improve bones strength, core work and form drills to keep my stride efficient and healthy, stretching and mobility work to to help with injury prevention, etc. That's what I need to get back to.

Once I get past the healing stage for whatever is ailing my hip right now, I plan on getting back to the basics WHILE I continue following my training plan. These slow and steady increases in weekly mileage and intensity combined with the small things I just mentioned - That's my goal for 2014.

I won't be sharing any mileage goals or race goals because I always have high expectations of myself and you would likely laugh at most of the goals. I will say that it took me 15 weeks to get to my peak fitness in 2011, when I was prepared to run a half marathon in sub 6:10 pace. Seeing as I have 52 weeks ahead of me in 2014, in addition to a great support group and two extra years of experience, I see no reason I can't be back in that shape by the end of this year.


Learning from my mistakes. [0M]

Learning from your mistakes is important. It's how humans improve at things over time. We learn what NOT to do so that we know what TO do. Unfortunately, when it comes to my training, I am not very good at learning from mistakes! I have had 7 stress fractures in my running 'career' and almost all of them sidelined me for a good five to seven months. The sad part is, I'm pretty sure that if I had backed off the mileage and spent some time cross training when the pains first appeared, I could have avoided all of that boring time off.

Right now, I hurt to walk from my kitchen table to the sink, from my bed to the closet, from the front door to the mailbox, etc. And no, I don't think anything is bone related (a stress fracture), but there are multiple places that hurt, and they have been hurting for over four weeks now. None of them have improved, and some have gotten gradually worse. I'm no doctor, and I'm no PT, but I'm pretty sure none of that is normal or healthy. It's time to give things a rest for a few days and listen to my body. I may have run through this in the past, just because I CAN physically run on these pains, but that doesn't make it wise to do so. It's time I learn from my mistakes! :)

Sunday, December 29th - Saturday, January 4th
Total rest days. No core, no cross training, no strength, no running, minimal walking.

ART appointment with my Chiro on Monday night.
Bone Scan referral put in by my PCP last week.
Seeing an Orthopaedic MD on Friday morning.
Functional Movement Screening mid-day on Friday.


Down week - Just in time for Christmas! [26M]

Last week was full of ups and downs - Reaching my peak weekly mileage for the 2013 year and having successful workouts and moderate paced runs, and at the same time, getting a big time reality check by bombing my first race in a month or two. I am happy with it, regardless of the race! I have ten weeks until race day fitness and mental toughness need to be ready, and I believe that is plenty of time!

This week is a [well-timed] down week, which is nice considering the combination of my major aches and pains and the typical holiday traveling that we have planned.

Sunday, December 22nd
Rest day!

Monday, December 23rd
3M shakeout. Ran around Memorial Park on our way to Hull. Nothing special about this run. Still had the same hip pain, but I did notice it felt better running faster as opposed to slower, and it also seems to minimize as I get farther into the run, then getting worse after the run or when walking.

Tuesday, December 24th
3M warm up, 5 x 1M @ 6:15 pace w/ 400j recovery. This was one COLD workout! Because of work and family schedules for the day, we had no choice but to do the workout first thing in the morning. I think it was "feels like 25". The warm up felt nice, but as soon as I did the first mile repeat, I knew I was in for a tough day. It was so cold that I tightened up more and more each lap... Running 90, 3:05, 4:40, 6:15 on the nose, but all at practically race effort. Second and third reps were the same, coming in at 6:16. It was during this recovery lap that I noticed I couldn't bend my fingers all the way and I had a major panic attack. When I started the next one I tried relaxing my wrists so that my hands shook with every step, hoping to increase blood flow and warm them up. Bad idea! I had been coming thru 200m in 44 every lap... This time? 48! 95 for the first 400 and it didn't get better! 6:21 for the fourth mile! After that, I went back to normal. Same splits for my last mile as the earlier ones, but the last lap was quicker thanks to some pacing/ cheering from Jake. The last rep was 6:11. Altogether : 6:15, 6:16, 6:15, 6:21, 6:11. I'll take it!
2M shakeout. Quick out and back run in Hull before traveling over to Dayton for Christmas Eve dinner with Jake's family.

Wednesday, December 25th
6M moderate run. Jake and I had the privilege of getting in a Christmas run together after our day full of travel from Dayton to LaRue and from LaRue to Dallas. It was an uncomfortable run to say the least (thanks to a full week of food we probably shouldn't have eaten), but it was nice to enjoy the Christmas lights and company of one another. Right hip/hip flexor still hurts, both calf muscles still knot up on the outside, my left glute and outer knee are both painful as well. I notice the hip and knee hurt worst walking or just starting my run, but everything else is worst during the run.

Thursday, December 26th
4M shakeout + 6 uphill strides. Same pains as I've been having, no need to re-list them. :) Other than that, I felt good today.
2M shakeout + rehab work. Nice comfortable, form-focused shakeout in our neighborhood after work. I followed that with a good ten minutes stretching. Before both of my runs today I spent five to ten minutes rolling all muscle groups on our foam roller and am hoping it does something to help!

Friday, December 27th
2M shakeout in the morning. Still ridiculously tight calves, painful right hip and hip flexor, and random aches on the left-hand side. Energy levels are good and the pace felt nice.
Had to skip the 4M tempo planned for my lunch break. Started having stomach cramps around 11:30, but tried to warm up anyways. Half a mile in I could barely stand up straight, so I walked home and decided to push the workout to tomorrow (morning!). Kind of a bummer because it was ideal workout weather.

Saturday, December 28th
Total rest day. I have had a hard time getting around (just walking) for a couple weeks now and I'm getting frustrated with myself for continuing to push forward. We're taking three days of complete rest (no running, no cross training, no core, no nothing), combining that with lots of recovery modes (ice baths, epsom salt balts, gentle foam rolling, gentle stretching, ART)., and hoping that I can pick things back up a little healthier on Tuesday.


Getting close to the 12k of Christmas! [50M]

I'm so thankful to finally have two weeks at 40mpw under my belt! That gives me a lot of confidence, because for a lot of this fall's training, I really didn't feel like I could say I was training. It's pretty embarrassing when you say you're a runner and someone asks how much you run per week, and all you can say is twenty something miles, ha. Another bonus to last week is all of the soft surface mileage I got in. I was only on pavement for ONE run out of the whole week! How awesome is that?! I also got a new pair of shoes on Thursday night, so I'm hoping those help me knock out this shin and hip flexor pain I've been dealing with.

This weekend Jake and I have a fun little race in Houston called the 12k of Christmas. It's a cute idea. The race is 7.45 miles (12k), so it starts at 7:45 AM. I thought that was clever. :) Even thought it's in Houston which is known for high turnouts at races, I'm hoping it's a low-key high turnout. There are no prizes or anything, it's just a good, old-fashioned race. My goal is to break 6:30 pace for the race, which will be a big challenge, but that's what races are for.

Sunday, December 15th
9M averaging 7:45 pace or faster. Jake and I went out to the gravel/ rocky path across our toll bridge for this run. I ended up averaging 7:24 pace for the run. Lots of mud clunked up in the crevices of my new shoes making them very heavy (note to self, don't wear shoes with deep holes in the bottom on muddy trails), but it was still nice to be on a soft surface. I will try to get out there for some of my shakeouts this week. Random ache showed up in my lower back/ upper tailbone on the left side. 

Monday, December 16th
Rest day. Took an epsom salt bath in the morning, relaxed all day (in my jammies while I worked!!), and got some ART done after work. Successful off day! :)

Tuesday, December 17th
2M shakeout. I absolutely LOVE starting my day with these shakeouts! No time pressure, no effort pressure, just simply running for the fun of it! I did my run on the grass track at DBU and then walked through some drills and stretches. Still some pain in my right hip/quad, though not as bad as I feared. My sacrum (?) had a sharp pain on the left side again for the last couple minutes of my run. So weird as that just showed up out of nowhere on Sunday.
9M w/ 8x1000m @ 3:50-3:53, 200j recovery. 3M warm-up around Grand Prairie, then changed shoes, one set of drills, and two quick strides. 1k times were 3:51, 3:52, 3:53, 3:54, 3:50, 3:49, 3:50, 3:47. My pacing was really off on several of them. The first four were supposed to be in 94" pace and I came through my first 400 in 86. I spent the rest of the first four trying to relax enough to get back on pace without relaxing so much that I slowed down too much. The second half was supposed to be more aggressive and those went fairly well. I'm extremely thankful Jake was able to time me to tonight because without him calling out splits, I would have been clueless! I did feel pretty good though muscularly. Right hip/ upper quad (whichever it is) and left sacrum (?) are still very painful. I took an empsom salt bath immediately when I got home.

Wednesday, December 18th
2M shakeout. Same aches and pains, but my stomach with the big yuck-o this morning. I've felt sick to my stomach since we went to bed last night. Regardless, it was still nice to get in the shakeout before starting my day. No weights this morning as planned because of my stomach. 
7M averaging 7:45 pace or faster. Still an unsettled stomach, but I was able to get in the run as scheduled. 7 miles in 7:41 pace on the rocky trail across our toll bridge. I got chased by a dog at one point that scared the poop out of me, but other than that it was a nice pleasant run. The outside of my right hip was the most painful out of everything today.

Thursday, December 19th
4M shakeout, 8x100m uphill.Only got in a 4 mile shakeout today, and it was a shakeout in every sense of the word. A shuffle is actually probably the best description I could give! My right hip and hip flexor were super painful, both shins hurt, my left glute hurt... Just an all around achy, sluggish, weak feeling. Bleh.
2M shakeout.

Friday, December 20th
3M 5M shakeout. Got lost on the Rice loop in Houston and accidentally ran some extra mileage. It's probably a good thing since I lost two miles yesterday. Since I got lost and wasn't sure how far out I was, the second half of this run was at a very solid effort. Still the same big time pain in my right hip and left sacrum, just like I've been having, but thankfully not as stiff and sluggish elsewhere today compared to yesterday.

Saturday, December 21st
12M w/ 12k race (goal 6:2x pace). Definitely a failed race today. I felt okay on the warmup and was honestly anticipating a surprise-yourself race. I have had all successful workouts since Jake's schedule picked up, so there was plenty of confidence boosting material in my mind. Unfortunately, I was not smart with race tactics and blew myself up too early. 5:56 pace thru 800m, 6:09 thru the mile. Then first crash, falling to 6:32 pace in the second - at this point I still felt very good. Next, a further crash, falling back to 6:45 pace, starting to hurt. By the time I got to the four mile mark, I had a stabbing pain in my right chest, so I stopped my watch, bent over and pressed as hard as I could for around a minute, just until it passed. Watched several groups of guys go by and made it my goal to catch as many as possible when I started back. The first group was about 100m ahead. When I got to them, I was averaging 7:15 pace for the mile and blew past them... That's a sign of how long I stopped for! I went from running 6:46 pace to blowing by a 7:15 pace group! The last half of the run was touch and go. Middle miles were the slowest, then I gradually picked it up a little. In summary, mile paces were 6:09, 6:32, 6:45, 7:03, 6:58, 7:03, 6:44, ?. The last 1/2 mile was faster than the 6:44 mile, but I don't know the actual pace - I forgot to stop my Garmin at the finish!! :( Sacrum was not a problem until my cool down, right hip was not an issue until the last three miles of the race, then it got worse. All in all, it was a big time bummer of a race. Lots of mental and physical improvements to work on!


Post Ice-Pocalypse Training Week! [40M]

Well, last week threw a bit of a curve ball at us. Around Tuesday we started seeing more and more news reports cautioning us that weather might get bad beginning on Thursday. I heeded their advice to an extent by getting up extra early to do my run before anything blew in on Thursday, but I definitely did not expect anything that happened after that. Thursday afternoon, Jake and his team set off for Kansas in a charter bus for their first indoor track meet. Around 6:30, I got a call from him saying they had to turn back; they couldn't get through Oklahoma. I started paying more attention to the news, and sure enough, overpasses were already being closed all over the DFW metroplex due to ice. He made it home and we called it a day.

I woke up on Friday, anxious to see what it looked like outside, as I knew I'd heard freezing rain hit the windows all night long. Yep - Ice everywhere. At least 2" inches thick. And no, not snow, not mushy, fun, let's go play in the white stuff... Just pure layers of ice. Throughout the day we took a few breaks to slide down the driveway and the front yard on cardboard boxes, but there was no way we would be able to run. It was just too dangerous. Saturday rolled around and the temps ranged from 18 to 25. We woke up at sunrise, bundled up, and began our trek to the gym 1 mile away. The only negative to living in our neighborhood is that we are on top of a very high hill, and the only way to enter or exit is to use a very steep hill. We brought our cardboard boxes on our walk and slid down the hill, which worked great. The walk back was a little more challenging! The trip to and from the gym was our only time out of the house on Saturday. On Sunday, we bundled up, planning to make the 1 mile trek to our gym again (took us about 45 minutes the first day), but we only made it a block and half in over 20 minutes. The roads were super slick as the ice was covered in a thin layer of liquid. Lots of slipping and sliding. We carefully made our way back and waited until the afternoon to make the trek again. At 3:00 we set back out, this time with success getting there and returning home! Temps will drop below freezing again tonight so the roads will re-freeze, but I am hoping to be able to drive to the grocery store tomorrow afternoon. What a wild weekend!! If there is one thing we learned - We need to stock up on non-perishables and purchase a treadmill, haha!

Here are a few pictures and videos from our weekend!

Jake attempting to make a path in our driveway on Friday afternoon.

Cars stuck on the hill entering our neighborhood... Four days after the ice storm.

This is what we woke up to the first morning. It looks fun, but it's all ice!

Here's a clip of us sliding down the steep hill.

Here's a clip of us as we started our trek on Saturday.
Anyways, we're now starting a new week. Tomorrow is my rest day, and then it will be time to get after it again! 40 miles on tap, which should be easier in six days as opposed to five. :)

Sunday, December 8th
7M with 3M tempo. I had to do my tempo from last week today due to the ice storm. It actually worked out well because I still got in my long run (yesterday) and my full mileage last week. Four mile warm up was in 8:07 pace with 30" surges in the last mile. Three mile tempo was 6:31, 6:27, 6:19. It felt surprisingly very good and I was so thankful! I have a lot of aches and pains right now that a bit unsettling to me, but I am thankful for how my fitness levels have been progressing. My workouts have all gone well and my mileage is slowly but surely increasing.

Monday, December 9th
Rest day

Tuesday, December 10th
8M with 4x1M @ 6:20 pace, 400m jog recovery. I waited until 5 to run because that was going to be the warmest and least windy out of my options of 6am, noon, and 5pm. It ended up being low 30's, but thankfully low wind. Regardless, I now know I have some serious winter gear shopping to do. This time I actually "prepared" and wore tights + sweatpants and 4 long sleeve tops to warm up, then stripped to two long sleeve tops and tights to workout in. Even with all the layers I still FROZE! My fingers, legs, and arms were not happy with me at all. Anyways, first mile was 95's every lap for 6:20 even. On each 400 recovery, I slipped on my zip up jacket and ran a bit quicker than last time just to minimize my chances of getting cold. Next three miles were 6:17, 6:15, 6:10 (?) for a 6:15 average. I'm really guessing on the fourth mile. The first lap was 90" and felt so easy that I decided not to look again until I finished. I actually "kicked" the last 200 of it and was pumped to see my time, but the watch had gotten messed up. By the time I figured it out and got it fixed and back to the timer screen, it was already up to 6:20. I would be shocked if this was slower than 6:10 though, so that's where I'm pegging it. Another sub-par winter workout though, in my opinion. This week and last week both. I hit my goal times both weeks, but felt so miserable from the cold that I don't feel like I ran to my fitness level in either one.*Side note for the day is feet pain.Bottom outer portion of left foot, and top of right foot, similar to where the 2011 stress fractures were.

Wednesday, December 11th
7M easy. I'm not exactly sure that I got in the full seven miles today, but I do know that it was very close and my HR averaged 163. I'm calling it a mission accomplished. Super bad pain in my shins (particularly one spot on the left leg), so hoping it was just a weather and unstable surface thing. Wasn't beat up or fatigued before or during the run at all, but this afternoon and evening I've felt rather run down.

Thursday, December 12th
7M, 6 strides. I ran the same loop as yesterday and the mud has gotten worse (probably due to people like me running on it). I had to step onto the banked grass along the path at several points, which got old after the first few loops, haha. This run seemed to go by much quicker than yesterdays. I also allowed myself to let my HR go a little higher as well. I still tried to keep it very under control, but I let it sneak into the lower 170's. My left shin and the outside of the foot weren't as bad on the trail today, though they were a bit more noticeable when doing strides on the pavement. I've also got to roll and take care of my right hip. For some reason it got really tight on this run. The strides were nice though.. I felt very strong and quick on them. 

Friday, December 13th
7M with 5 alt miles (6:30-6:45/ 7:00-7:15). Youch! So many pains this week! :( I've got pains in both feet (different places in each), my shins, and my right hip/hip flexor. What a mess! Aside from that, however, this was a picture-perfect workout. First mile was 6:31 and felt great. Followed it with a 6:56 mile just cruising. Next up, dropped it back to 6:28 - This was my best mile of the whole run... completely even paced, start to finish. Followed that with 6:53, still feeling good. Lastly, brought it in with a 6:21 mile. Averaged 6:38 pace for the five miles and felt great doing it. I really liked having the moderate miles in between the tempo miles. Kept the run nice and easy mentally.

Saturday, December 14th
4M, 6 strides. Nothing exciting to report. Trotted through my four mile shakeout on the grass/turf inside the SMU track. Went through a (very) short set of drills and then knocked out my six strides with the wind at my back. I felt very uncoordinated, choppy, and out of balance on the strides. I'm wondering if maybe I'm out of alignment and that is contributing to the strong hip/hip flexor pain on my right side.


13 weeks to get fit and fast! [40M]

I officially have 13 weeks until my goal race! Although I'm still embarrassed by my current fitness level, I am excited to be "starting" a 13 week build up where I'm at. 13-15 weeks is a pretty standard training season for me, so usually I would be starting from scratch at this point. Instead, I've got several weeks of 30+ miles and at least three 9 mile long runs under my belt. Last week's daily runs were a bit of downer since I was running properly per my HR, but the pace was so much slower than I expected; however, the mile repeats on Friday really boosted my confidence and gave me a renewed sense of hope! :)

Sunday, December 1st 
9M long run by HR. I averaged 165 for my heart rate today which is EXACTLY what my goal was!! Very proud that I didn't panic and push my HR up after seeing each miles' splits! The pace is still way slower than I would like. :( I feel like my easy run days should be closer to sub 8:00 pace, but I guess that I'll have to let time, consistency, and patience work their magic. 8:28 pace for the average today. My left quad was extremely painful from the start and I almost stopped at 4 miles because it was so strong, but over the last half of the run it actually eased up a tad bit. Hoping ART helps it a little tomorrow! I have a long ways to go!! But I will say that running by HR has made my runs much more enjoyable! It's nice to go out and not be real winded or worn out when I finish my runs!

Monday, December 2nd
Rest day

Tuesday, December 3rd
7M w/ 6 x 1000m @ 3:56, 200j recovery. This was a rough one. I highly underestimated the weather and ended up with frozen legs, a reynauds flare-up, a tight throat and chest full of mucus, and way too little clothing, hahah. In hindsight, I should have started earlier to allow more time for warming up and drills, and I also should have dressed more appropriately. Note to self - 40* is cold when the sun is not out. Anyways, my coldness got the best of my in the first half of the workout and then I had to fight through mentally on the last half when my hands started burning and stuff. Just an all-around struggle. 3:49, 3:51, 3:50, 3:53, 3:53, 3:53 - Averages to 6:12 pace. Obviously I nailed the times, but I just was so cold that I had a bad attitude and struggled through it. My left quad is still really aching, as well. Definitely need an epsom soak today and the ART tomorrow!

Wednesday, December 4th
7M easy. My garmin says I ran 7 miles averaging 8:17 pace today, but I am well beyond positive that I ran farther than 7 miles and it was faster than 8:17 pace, hahah! It's so weird. My garmin makes the miles shorter on the track (beeping about 100m before the 1600m mark) and longer in the trails (turning a 5.2M loop into 4.7M). At any rate, today was a pretty good run despite my hip flexors. I'm glad I pushed it off and didn't run early this morning because they were much more painful then. I lucked out and ran into Katie, one of Jake's athletes, when I got to the trails at DBU. When I was entering the campus gate my HR was only at 137 so I made a big pace jump to bring it up. Since I was already moving well, that's the pace Katie latched onto so for my first 3.5 miles or so we were really moving (though the garmin would tell you we only ran 7:50 pace!). I'm glad I was able to get all 7 miles in today though. Big relief. Average HR today was 166, so still in my 70-80% range.

Thursday, December 5th
7M easy + 6 x 100m strides. Nasty weather is coming from up north so we went out super early to get our runs in on the Katy Trail. The temps started dropping during our run and by the last mile I was pretty chilled! Probably didn't help that I sweated in all my layers on the way out and then ran into the cold wind on my way back! I thought this was going to be a GREAT run at first. I was struggling to keep my HR up high enough (not that I was having to run hard, just that I kept looking down and it was too low) which was crazy because I was running way faster than I have been on these HR runs. Unfortunately when I turned around things nose-dived. I dropped the keys once in the first mile and once in the last mile and those spills took a tiny hit on the pace, but nothing as big as the pace changes the Garmin recorded! Crazy what that wind will do to your HR!! Ended up averaging 8:29 pace with an average HR of 163. Mile splits were 8:41, 8:09, 8:09, 8:20, 8:39, 8:49, 8:42. Finished things off with 6 very nice strides.

Friday, December 6th
7M w/ 3M tempo @ 6:25-6:30 pace. Iced in and can't get anywhere. No run at all today...

Saturday, December 7th
3M easy + 6 x 100m strides. 10M easy on the treadmill + 2M walking on ice. :) I included the walk to and from the gym because I'm more than confident that I'll be very sore from it tomorrow, haha! I wanted to get in my 40 mile week as planned, but Jake did not want me to do my long run tomorrow if I went long today. So, quick change of plans and I did tomorrow's long run today to get in the 40 miles, and tomorrow I'll do yesterday's tempo run workout. Perfect! Nice and easy run on the treadmill. I did not run as slow as I have been when going by HR, but I did try to stay conscious of what I would be running with the HR monitor and not get much faster than that. Ended up at exactly 8:00 pace for the run. SUPER tight left calf that almost stopped me multiple times during the run. Got to nurse that back today!


Texas weather is KA-RAY-ZEE!!! [32M]

So, I'm currently sitting in our hotel room in Spokane, just waiting until it's time to leave for the airport. We will for sure make it to Seattle today, but after that, there's no telling! Dallas has a winter weather storm predicted from 6am today thru noon tomorrow (Monday). AKA, we'll be very lucky if our plane gets to land in Dallas at 7:15 tonight!!! And, to make our return home even more exciting, tomorrow the weather forecast shows sleet, Tuesday it shows snow, and Wednesday and Thursday the lows are 26 and 29 respectively. We may as well just stay here in Washington if that's the weather we're going home to, haha! The nice thing about Spokane is that there's zero rain and zero wind (at least for the four days we've been here!).

So to recap last week's training, I give it an A-. It was a slight jump in mileage, up 3 from last week, 6 from my previous season high, and I had one very good workout... at least it was very good by feeling! The rest of the week was nothing special and I actually felt somewhat beat up and sluggish most days, but I'm still giving it an A- because I got the mileage in despite all the pains I had. Lately I have been so cautious about potential injuries that when things hurt more than one day, I would stop part way through my run to keep them from getting worse. Last week may have been my first week with pains where I actually got in every mile, including the optional ones. The speed fartlek on Tuesday gave me a glimmer of hope that I am getting more fit, and it was also a reminder of what it's like to feel fast and smooth again.

This week I will probably be starting up a new plan that Jake has laid out. He recently read Vigil's book and is really excited about some of the training philosophies and workouts he picked up. He showed me a skeletal plan on the plane ride up and I really like it. The workouts are more structured than usual and they build up to a little more work than the old plan, which gives me a lot more confidence! If all goes well at the doctor with my ankle/arch, I'll do a one mile time trial this week and that will determine my paces for most of the future workouts.

Sunday, November 24th
Rest day. Was supposed to be 7 miles (it's a down week), but my ankle and arch are still a massive pain, even when just walking. Figured it was best to wait and see if I could try running outside tomorrow instead of forcing another chunk of miles in on the treadmill. My doctor scheduled a Doppler Ultrasound on it for tomorrow, but that will depend on if we get home by then or not!

Monday, November 25th
7M natural run in the neighborhood. It was cold and misty, so I started in my baggy wind pants (my tights are in the wash!) and it made for a very uncomfortable first four miles, haha! But honestly, I really enjoyed this run! It was nice to have the fresh air on my face and be running outdoors. Mile splits were 8:07, 7:58, 7:34, 7:14, 6:56, 6:55, 6:40 for a 7:20 average pace. I felt like a new person when I took those sweatpants off after four miles, haha! My ankle is the same and I still have shin pain, but I only had pain in my quad for about 3/4's of a mile in my sixth mile. Feeling very thankful for this one!

Tuesday, November 26th
3M easy, 3M aerobic tempo, 1M easy. Finished with a 6:50 avg for the workout portion. Today we tried something different! Jake would like to start running by HR, so today was day one of that! Either I have a super high max HR, have been overtraining, or have been misinterpreting effort in my workouts! Warmed up 3 miles averaging 8:15 pace and with an average HR of 158 (last mile avg HR was 165). Did a few drills, changed shoes, and then did my 3M on the track. It was super windy (mostly why we started the HR thing today). After 500m I checked and my Garmin said 6:02 pace and HR of 176, so I put the brakes on. He wanted my HR between 168 and 172. Well, it didn't work. I slowed down and slowed down and slowed down and my HR continued to climb. First mile: 6:46, HR 181. Second mile (still trying to drop the HR): 6:59, HR 185. Third mile (giving up on dropping the HR, just trying to hold steady): 6:45, HR 187. Ouch. My garmin says that's 88% of my max HRR. Lots and lots of work to do! 1 mile cool down in 7:57, avg HR of 169.

Wednesday, November 27th
5M easy run + drills and 6 strides. Day 2 of HR running. Umm, yes, I have definitely been running too hard on my daily runs. That or I am terribly mistaken on what my HR/HRR % should be for daily runs! My HR was very high in the first mile, but after that it was picture perfect for what I wanted. 180, 157, 158, 160, 160. I was hoping to stay between 155 and 160 so the last four miles were right on. I don't know the paces as the Garmin doesn't pick up accurately on our gravel trail. I do know it's about 5.2 miles for 4 loops, which would mean I averaged 8:02 pace today. It's funny because I've always said I am a loud breather when I run, but today I couldn't hear myself breathing out loud at all. Any time I did hear myself, I looked down and my HR was over 160... ding ding ding! I will have much slower runs for the next month or so as I get into this new routine, but I think it will really reduce my aches and pains and help my workouts. I felt like I was literally jogging today! So freeing!

Thursday, November 28th
5M run. We went to Old Settler's Park near Hutto and ran a loop that was about 1k long around the perimeter their soccer fields. It was pretty decent footing, but it took a while to warm up! I did eventually get more comfortable though! 160 average HR for the full five miles, but man was it slow! 8:38 average pace! Phew! I am embarrassed by how my HR is with such easy paces! Shins, left foot, right arch/ankle, and left quad are all still bothering me though. :(

Friday, November 29th
2.5M easy, 4 x 1M @ 6:25 w/ 400m recovery. Did most of my warm up on the track in the opposite direction because my legs felt so heavy and clunky on the grass at the nearby golf course. I thought it would be a poor workout because of the 'off' warmup and I just didn't have any kind of pep in my step, but the PERFECT weather was enough to turn the tide! 6:24, 6:20, 6:15, 6:09 for the repeats, none of which were out of control. After the second one, I wanted to drop four seconds on the next and ended up dropping five, so right where I wanted. Then Jake surprised me and made it 4 reps instead of 3. I wasn't sure how it would go because I wanted to continue my trend of dropping 4-5" per rep, but as soon as I came thru 400 in 90, I knew it wouldn't be a problem! Got to ease up a couple times when I heard splits and was still able to cut down by 6"! So at the end of the day, the pattern was cutting 4", 5", 6"! :) I'm math girl! :) The total recovery time was just under 3:00 between each rep. Pains today were shins (mostly during warm up), right ankle, hamstring, and hip, and left quad and knee. 

Saturday, November 30th
Rest day.


We're headed to Spokane! [37M]

This week Jake and I will be flying out with his assistant coach and one of his athletes for the NCAA D2 National Championships! His athlete is extremely talented and won the individual title this past weekend at their NCCAA National Championships. I'm definitely looking forward to visiting Spokane, and especially excited to watch this lady compete!

In terms of my own training this week, not much will change from the past few weeks. I'm still following the same basic skeletal plan with long on Sunday, short fartlek style work on Tuesday, and some good aerobic work on Friday. I can tell that I am improving and I have felt great in terms of strength and energy, but my feet, joints, and IT bands have really been hurting for the past week. I'm wondering if part of it is from so many tight, winding turns on the trails last Sunday, which would be nice. That would mean all I need to do is take good care of them and wait for them to heal up.... They shouldn't be getting any worse.

Sunday, November 17th
9M run with Carolyn at WRL. We started out nice and easy with an 8:20 mile and finished the run with a 6:58 mile, so it was a pretty typical progression for us. We usually pick it up pretty well when we go long together. Finished with a 7:43 average pace and the same achy arch and IT bands as when I started, haha. Bought some epsom salt today though! Woohoo!

Monday, November 18th
Rest day! Two days of foam rolling, plus a nice epsom salt bath yesterday and today has worked like magic! My IT bands feel fantastic!

Tuesday, November 19th
1M test run at lunch + 6M with 2M of straights and curves at night. I was dealing with some major arch and ankle pain during my mid-day run (see picture below!), so I stopped after a mile and went to visit the trainers. They didn't seem the least bit concerned so Jake, ever so kindly, took me to the track to get it in at night. Absolutely perfect in terms of how I felt. Literally, I felt like my old self again. Going from 100 pounds when I was sick (but super fast) to 115 now, I just have felt heavy and uncoordinated and, well, just... heavy. No better way to say it. For the first time tonight, I felt lean and like my old self where I was running on air and could run as fast as I chose to allow myself. So freeing. At any rate, the 2 miles hard were completed in 12:40. Hard 100's were between 5:13 and 4:38; easy 100's were between 7:11 and 7:59. The first mile was mostly in the 5:00-5:11 range for the hard parts, second mile was all sub 5:00. Felt great. Now I just need to fix up this arch!!!
Check out that vein on my right ankle!

Wednesday, November 20th
6M run and weights. I ran like a snail for the first three miles because my joints hurt so bad from the way I was altering my form on the gravel. For the last three miles I switched to a more packed gravel surface and was a little better off. My ankle is still bothering me, but now the opposite hip flexor and knee are as well! Eek. Going to ART tonight.

Thursday, November 21st
6M + 6 strides. We woke up at 4:30 and traveled pretty much all day! Got to Spokane and did our run outside (bad idea for me!). My reynauds got the best of me and I had to stop 3 minutes early and skip the strides. Just miserable! After the first 30 minutes I realized I was only getting colder and considered going inside to finish on the treadmill, but decided to just really take off and move my body with a much higher effort in hopes to get warmer. It worked for everything but my hands, but then my left knee started giving me a sharp pain so I called it a day when I got back to the hotel. Same painful, swollen ankle vein!

Friday, November 22nd
6M with 3M hard. Nothing exciting to report on this one. Same ankle pains, also some shin and IT band pain but that's very much to be expected and not concerning to me. I did a normal easy first mile, then my usual 1' hard, 1' easy for the second mile to get my HR up. Did a teeny bit of drills in the small hotel gym and then knocked out my 3 miles at 6:44 pace. I think the hardest part of the run was all in the lungs. I felt like I was suffocating for the first 2 miles or so because it was so hot in there, but after that I was sweating enough that I could breathe a bit better. Still a good, full effort though, which is embarrassing but got to be thankful for progress! Getting a test done on my ankle when we get home next week to check the blood flow.

Saturday, November 23rd
3M shakeout. Just a nice easy run! First mile was a nice wake up mile, then I cut down every quarter mile after that to finish in the low 7:20s. Felt fine energy wise, but still feeling the IT bands and shins. Wearing compression socks pretty much 24/7 right now for the ankle, haha! Good thing it's cold here!


On to the next week! [34.7M]

What a crazy week and weekend! Needless to say I am exhausted and ready to wind down and get back into a routine!

Sunday, November 10th
8M trail run. I ran with Jake on this one so I wouldn't get lost in the trails, and let's just say that being sick combined with a weekend full of travel does not make for a pleasant run! I felt bad for holding Jake back! It was supposed to be a 9 miler, but considering that I know I'm trying to fight off some sort of cold and I just returned from travel, I think leaving off that last mile is okay. Jake had me do 1' hard, 1' easy for the last ten minutes just to ensure I got a little bit of quality in there.

Monday, November 11th
Rest day

Tuesday, November 12th
6M, last 2M of 200 on, 200 off. Ran 32 minutes, did one quick set of drills and a single stride, then took off. I was short on time because the kids were about to practice! I felt pretty good and loose, and the first few laps actually felt great, but as I went on my legs got very cold and tight. Not sure if it was from the temps dropping or if I wasn't warmed up well enough. Regardless, I hit the paces I needed to and felt very good thru 1.5M; all of the recoveries felt long and easy! 13:47 for the full 2 miles, splits of 42/61, 42/64, 41/63, 40/60, 41/63, 1:44 (?/?), 41/62, 40/56. Nothing but an e+ shot before the run today.

Wednesday, November 13th
6M run. Jake convinced me to go with him to the Luke's Locker social run this morning! It was below 30 outside and I knew I wouldn't run in the morning if I were on my own, haha! It worked out well this week, but I'm not sure if I'd have people to run with next time! Since I didn't know the route, I tucked in about 10m back from the lady Jake coaches and group of guys she was running with. With a couple miles to go they started wiggling on the pace a bit so I ended up running with them for the rest of the time. Supposedly it's a 10k route, so we ended up averaging 7:29 pace, though I'm really not sure how accurate that is. It was nice to get the run done though despite the weather! And I ran about 800m and went through a set of drills before we started, so no wasted mileage again... woohoo!

Thursday, November 14th
6M run + 6 strides. 3M and drills. I did not run this morning due to some groin and hamstring pain, and I figured I'd let it loosen up and run at lunch since it was supposed to be perfect weather. Lunchtime came around and though I still had the same pain, I intended to run. Nope. Not happening. My stomach was in knots so bad it hurt to even sit up... Laying down was the only way to get rid of the pain! So, post-ART session it was. I was fully dressed, stomach was good, weather was PERFECT, but the pains in my groin and glute still hadn't gotten better so I switched my six miler with Saturday's 3 miler. I also went through a set of drills but skipped the strides. Ouch! Hope this is better tomorrow!

Friday, November 15th
6M cut down. Ran a 1/2 mile loop to loosen up, ran thru a quick set of drills and 2 strides, and off I went. The plan was to start at 7:25 and cut down 10 seconds each mile to finish at 6:35 (date 10k pace), and I came thru the first 800 right at 6:36 pace. Yep, the e+ shots work, hahah. Had to coast for the rest of the mile since it was all downhill and still finished in 6:57. From there I focused on just cutting down each mile. 6:57, 6:51, 6:46, 6:40, 6:34, 6:30 for a 6:43 average. I still had the same pains in my hip, glute, and groin, so I've got those doused in pain relief cream right now and will be buying some epsom salt today! Very happy with this workout though! I had planned to stop after mile five since I knew I would finish at 10k pace (purpose of the workout), but I felt so good on the downhill last half of that mile that I decided to get in the 6th mile as planned. Woohoo! Successful day!

Saturday, November 16th
3M shakeout. 4.5M run. I wanted to get in the full six miles and strides that were originally scheduled for Wednesday, and at the beginning of my run I thought I might do so, but it was pretty obvious halfway thru that I was making a poor choice. My IT band, piriformis, quad, and arch, were getting tighter and tighter and tighter during the run. I even stopped to stretch at 24 minutes to see if it would release at all. No such luck. I called it a day at 36 minutes, came home, and as soon as I showered I doused myself in the analgesic cream. I'm hoping to make it to the store for some more epsom salt today. I really hate that I'm missing this mileage and the strides. I've had plenty of energy and my muscles feel good and strong and ready to roll, but I just hurt every time a take a step and I can't justify that to myself anymore. :(


Week 2 and life is good! [27M]

What an exciting first week of training! Everything went very well last week, and even better, it felt good! I had a few days with some foot pain, but since it was the same spot on both feet I thought it might be something with my flats or trainers. I switched to my old NB trainers and have been good as gold since then! If I can string together 14 more weeks of these runs, I will be plenty ready to at least complete a respectable half in March! Jake has a great plan set up which gradually increases mileage and the duration of my higher intensity runs! Love it!

Sunday, November 3rd
7M at WRL with a few uptempo miles. I ran the first 2.5 miles with Carolyn averaging 6:45 pace for those (she was running the DRC Half Marathon), then chilled as I got in the rest of my run. When my watch beeped to start the last mile, I decided to take the pace back down so that my total run average would be more reflective of those first two and a half miles! :) Finished off with a 6:41 mile, making my average pace for the day 7:04. Very happy with this! Last Friday was 5 miles in 6:47 pace, and now two days later I've gotten in 7 miles in just over 7 minute pace. If I stay patient and keep getting in the work without jumping ahead of myself, things are definitely looking up!

Monday, November 4th
Rest day! 20 minutes of abs during lunch and that's all!

Tuesday, November 5th
5M with 2M straights and curves. Did 24 minutes easy as an out and back run with Carolyn. We ran from the track to the Katy Trail and spent a good majority of the time there. After we got back, I changed shoes, did some leg swings, and then got started with my workout. Wasn't sure if I'd be able to finish as I had pretty bad hip pain on my left leg during the easy run, but it was more manageable in on the track (that or I was more distracted!). Saved the drills for during lunch when I did my second workout just to not overdo things with my hip/ IT band. The first mile of straights and curves was 6:56, the second one was 7:06 but I was in lanes 3 and 4 so I am assuming it was actually about the same.

Wednesday, November 6th
5M. Today was just picture perfect! Absolutely beautiful weather when I ran during my lunch hour, and the gravel trail was just right because of the rain we got last night! I did four loops, so should be about 5.2 miles. I wanted to run very easy and relaxed today to let my hip/IT band/hip flexor recover, and I succeeded! I felt like I was literally trotting the whole time and expected to look down and find that I had run 9:00 pace, but it was actually 7:53... and I seriously felt like I was just jogging! I could have run at that pace for hours and hours! Came home and went through my drills and knocked out the core. Another day in the books!

Thursday, November 7th (Fly to Kansas City, MO)
5M with 6 strides. Tried running in the morning but had too much glute/hamstring pain so I put a cream on it all day and did my run in the afternoon. Happened to be perfect weather in KC when I arrived, so I got lucky! The run didn't feel great structurally (joints and bones), but I had plenty of energy and kept it relaxed. Did some quick drills and my strides after the run.

Friday, November 8th
5M with last 3M hard. It was 30 degrees (wind chill) when I woke this morning so I opted for the treadmill. Plus there are no street lights here and I was concerned about being on the roads so early without lights! I did my two miles easy, the first one gradually dropping the pace and the second one alternating 8:30 pace with 7:30 down to 6:58 pace every minute to wake up a bit more. I felt awful and thought I might have to call it a day because I had so many aches, my legs felt like lead, and I was getting light headed! I wasn't planning to stop before the 3 hard miles but decided that was best. I got a sip of water did some stretches and then hopped back on. Incline to 1%, pace to 6:58, and settled in. First mile felt absolutely awful but went by fast, 2nd mile crept by but actually felt pretty good. First quarter of the last mile I honestly thought I might pass out! I had to stop it at 4.25! I got another sip of water, walked around 15" or so, and then got back on. Finished out the last .75 at that same 6:58 pace and it felt fine that time. Must've been a travel funk. Oh well - Got it done, to some extent!

Saturday, November 8th
Rest day! I felt so achy on yesterday's run that I decided it was wisest to sit out the optional 3M shakeout and let my joints recover a bit.


Here we go, here we go!!! [32.5M]

This should be my first FULL week of spring half marathon training! Still just "base" with bits of quality thrown in, but I'm excited anyways! :) And I'm so happy to have a training partner, Carolyn, again! We should be able to meet for our long run and at least one, if not two, of our quality runs each week! This weekend I'll probably jump in the DRC 5k at the last minute just to keep practicing the mental side of racing. I'm still so weak at pushing myself in the middle/ end of the race - It's crazy what practices you can pick up when you take a break from running for a while! Time to remember that there is no such thing as dropping out of a race!! And there is also no point in running hard if you're not going to compete! Got to get that racing mind back, and soon!

Sunday, October 27th
8M plus one additional mile with Carolyn! We only had 8 miles scheduled, but decided we'd rather run the loop for 8 miles, then walk back the last mile or so, but we got tired of walking and it was taking way too long! We kept things nice and easy today and it felt so great; this is by far the fastest any of my runs have gone by this year! 8:49, 7:57, 7:56, 7:42, 7:32, 7:32, 7:28, 7:16 [7:47 avg], then the last (extra) mile in 7:54! :) 

Monday, October 28th
Rest day!

Tuesday, October 29th
5M w/ 200 on, 200 off for the last 2M. I did this on the grass track, so my 200's were actually 0.15 of a mile instead of an actual 200 meters, but that's okay... means more rest time as well! The 3M warm up felt great and I ran those miles in 8:26, 7:54, 7:26. Then I changed shoes, did a quick, single set of drills, and took off. And by took off, I mean it. I am a TERRIBLE judge of pace right now. I knew the hard segments were really hard, but I expected them to be, so I assumed I was still running the right effort level. Little did I know I had turned this into a true speed workout! I had to practically walk the recovery 200's! :/ Paces for the hard segments were 4:48, ? (didn't get it), 5:04, 4:58, 5:11, 5:05, 5:04, 5:05; recoveries ranged from 7:50 to 9:20 pace. I'll know better next time! Since I accidentally stopped my watch instead of lapping it when I started my 2nd hard 200, I ended up running an extra 200m hard today, lol!

Wednesday, October 30th
5M on the treadmill, thanks to my wimpy self and a windy/misty day. :) It worked out quite well though. I started at 8:27 pace, then every 0.33 of a mile I knocked it down by 0.1mph. This put me finishing up the run at 7:03 pace which was just perfect. Total time was 38:40, so 7:44 pace. First two miles were over 8:00 pace though, so I'm pleased with that. Changing the pace so often made it go by quicker as well. Bone stim on both feet and shins today just to be safe!

Thursday, October 31st
5M, 6 strides. Knocked out all five miles on a soft surface today! Score! Switched back and forth between our grass track and the gravel trail and it worked like a charm. I'm really liking my new routine. I feel better going into the day when I have a relaxed, slow wake up in the morning. Plus, now that I'm running at lunch, it forces me to stop snacking at 9:00, which is another bonus. Since I'm already very awake and loose, it doesn't take more than a mile for me to get rolling and even the first mile doesn't feel stiff or achy like it does at 6AM! I'll just have to find a way to make the morning runs work when I can meet Carolyn for workouts or when I have longer runs. Today's splits were 8:31, 7:43, 7:24, 7:14, 7:00. Talk about a nice progression without even trying! Followed it with one set of drills and 6 short strides.

Friday, November 1st
5M cut-down. The plan was to do a short 800m easy warm-up and then run 7:35 cutting down 15 seconds each mile, finishing at 6:35. It was absolutely PERFECT weather though and I guess I let that get the best of me. First mile was 7:02 and felt like a jog! Next mile was 6:51, then I didn't catch the next three miles because my watch changed screens, but I know for sure I cut down. After I finished the last mile and saw my watch was on the wrong screen, I switched it to the correct one and stopped it there. Should be around 33:55 for the full time (6:47 pace). Felt very good leg wise, but the cool air did cause me to get the sticky nose and mouth after a little bit! Happy though! I wore my old NB shoes to see if they helped my feet and I had no issues!

Saturday, November 2nd
3M shakeout in the neighborhood before we headed out to watch the Region II UIL Cross Country Meet. It's always fun scoping out new recruits!


The time is going to pass regardless... [23M]

I ran in the Komen Dallas Race for the Cure this weekend and was thoroughly impressed by Luke's Locker, Humana, and New Balance for their contributions and support for the elite group that participated. I felt very uneasy about about being in this "elite" group knowing how out of shape I am right now, but I was so honored and humbled, and could not be more appreciative. It was wonderful to have our own port-o-potties, easy access to the start line, and a safe place to leave our bags during the race. Humana also provided us with free entries (thank you!) and New Balance gave us some sweet racing flats, shorts, and a jersey (thank you!). Very neat to see how all these groups worked together to build support and excitement for the breast cancer awareness event.

After the race, my friend Jeff, (whom I actually met this summer while running on a treadmill at the gym!) reminded me to be patient with my training because the time is going to pass regardless. He basically said that I should not rush progress or be discouraged by small improvements. This year is going to pass just like all the rest and a new one will come. I have more than enough time to get where I want to be. It's better to make small improvements and continue building and progressing than to try making major jumps and end up on the couch again.

This week marks the start of my new plan that Jake has made me so I can run a half marathon this spring. The first couple days are off so that I can go into the training fresh and without all my current aches. After this weekend, I am even more excited to get after this. I am competitive at heart and it's difficult knowing how far back I've fallen. I understand it's all part of coming back from injuries and I also understand the need for patience, so no worries. I just am VERY ready to be back in the grind and feeling fit and fast on race days again! :)

Sunday, October 20th
Rest and recovery. Feels like I've pulled something on the front outer side of my right lower leg. So weird! Glad these are my off days anyways! :)

Monday, October 21st
Rest and recovery. Solid core and cross training session during lunch!

Tuesday, October 22nd (it's go time!!)
3M moderate effort, drills, 16 diagonals while timing Dawn. I was supposed to do 5M with the last 2M being 100m hard, 100m easy, but I was timing Jake's athlete this morning and ran short on time. So I did the three miles and then ran my surges from the start to the 200 (across the field) during her workout. Very chilly out which made me feel quick and I had half an e+ shot before I left so I was really awake and ready to roll from the first step. No wasted miles today!

Wednesday, October 23rd
5M; drills. I got in at least five miles this morning (probably quite a bit more) at a very solid pace. Definitely a good run. My hamstring has been really hurting the past two days though, so I held off on the drills. 
Drills, upper body strength during lunch. I put some Ageless Pain Relief Cream on mid-morning, stretched gently, and massaged it a lot and it felt good enough to go through drills by lunchtime. I still skipped lower body strength though as I did not want to push that muscle today. Just keep it loose! :)

Thursday, October 24th
5M + strides. I'm pretty sure I've run too hard in every single one of my runs this week! I have felt like I've been really working (almost harder than tempo effort) for almost all of my runs this week. I think the cooler weather, lower mileage, and my e+ shots have been part of this, but I definitely need to cool it! I've been BEAT after my runs! Arms and legs both! Today I ran to the gravel trail at DBU, stayed on there until around 30 minutes, then switched to the grass track. I stretched my calves when I got to the grass, so I happened to check the time on my watch when I started there... my first mile was 6:5x... Yikes! After I saw that I really eased up until I finished out the full 40 minutes. No strides today and no drills either; really wanting to baby this hamstring by not doing any quick movements with it.

Friday, October 25th
5M with last 2M hard with Carolyn Kelly. Carolyn and I have been great training partners! We're at about the same fitness level, and we're somewhat opposite in workouts - She tends to start hard and maintain, I prefer to start easier and cut down. Works nicely because then we usually end up doing both, haha! Today was a rough one though! I think we underestimated the temps and didn't warm up quite enough. We never broke 8 minute pace during our first three miles, and we did absolutely nothing before starting the hard part... Like not even stop the run to do a few quick drills, strides, or stretches. I think next time we'll want to throw in some surges during our last two "warm up" miles. Regardless, we ran 6:52 and 6:38 for the two miles today. Hopefully next week we'll be better prepared for it because it felt awful today!! Haha!

Saturday, October 26th
3M shakeout before helping at the Heartland Conference Championship meet since my husband is the host team's coach! No time for real running when you leave that early in the morning!!!


I need to at least be sub 20:00 this week!! [24M]

Yep! I've finally decided I'm confident enough in my body to select and train for a goal race!! Last year I had planned on running The Woodland's Half Marathon, but had to drop my entry because of the stress fractures. I ended up getting to go watch the event anyways because Jake raced the marathon, and let me tell you - It is perfect! Great course, nice Texas weather, friendly people, and FAST racers. I am so looking forward to finally running (completing) my first half marathon! I don't expect to be in as good of shape as the 1/2 I started in Houston (6:08 pace thru 8M), but, I would definitely like a respectable debut. :) In saying that - It's time to stop babying myself. No more trotting on my daily runs. I need a long run - every week. I need workouts - every week. Good thing my husband is a coach and knows what's doing! :)

Here's the last week of my "return to running" season. I'll cap it off with a charity 5k (Komen) on Saturday, and then BOOM, into the training we go!

Sunday, October 13th

6M with Carolyn at the lake (per usual!). I absolutely love these runs with Carolyn! We are similar fitness levels and have a lot in common with both our husbands being coaches. Always lots to talk about! Personally, I felt like I had died and been forced to run anyways today, haha. My legs were literally like lead from step 1. We did get in a solid aerobic run though, and I have all day today and tomorrow to recover before I run again! Splits were 8:02, 7:23, 7:08, 7:08, 7:06, 6:51 for a 7:17 average.

Monday, October 14th
No running day! Day one of my new abs and strength series - Whooo! I am going to be strong!

Tuesday, October 15th
4M + 6 x 30",30" on the treadmill. Yucky weather today and I didn't want to run on pavement, so treadmill it was! This was by far the fastest any treadmill run has passed, haha! Unfortunately I still felt heavy legged and heavy lunged, so I kept the pace very relaxed. Hoping this gets me feeling good again soon. For my "150m" strides that were scheduled, I set the treadmill to 6:00 pace and jumped on for 30", rested 30", jumped on for 30", and so on to complete six. That was probably too slow, but I just wanted to do something to get myself moving quicker again. 

Wednesday, October 16th
6M with 4x2', 4x1', equal rest. I was stuck on the treadmill again today - The weather is changing!! This should make for PERFECT race weather this weekend though! About time! :) The workout was okay. My left leg is really bothering me; hip flexor, quad, shin, arch, they all hurt. I ran nice and easy for two miles, did some leg swings, and then ran 6:00 pace for the surges. The two minute ones were tougher than I care to admit, but the one minute ones were just fine! Lots of work to do, but I'm starting soon! 

Thursday, October 17th
Switched Friday's rest day with today because my hip flexor and shins were extra sore. Hoping they feel a bit better tomorrow so I can be ready to roll on Saturday!

Friday, October 18th
2M + 6 strides. My hip flexor still bothered me throughout the run, but it actually got a little better over time. I stopped at 2 miles just to not push it any more than necessary. Ready to drop under 20 already!

Saturday, October 19th
5k warm up, drills, 5k race at Komen Dallas Race for the Cure. Well, I fell apart again on the second mile, but this week I had the least time gain from mile two to three out of the last three races. This time around I was 6:09, 6:20, 6:24, plus the final kick. The past two weeks I added about twenty seconds or more with each mile, so this was a slight improvement. Once again, though, when I saw how slow that first mile was I spent the entire second mile (most of which was up gradual inclines) debating if I should just step off or not. When I got to the third mile, knew I had to finish, and knew it was all uphill from there, I finally turned on my brain a bit; but that second mile and the last 100m or so of the long hill in the 3rd mile pretty much knocked me out. So, 19:35 for the day. Upset stomach, freezing cold outside, and windy, but even still, best chance I had to get my time down into a respectable range. Oh well. Back to work so I can show up more prepared on another day!


Week 1 of Fall Training!!!! WOOHOO!! [34M]

Jake is officially staring me up on a workout and long run schedule! I will still only run five days per week, I will still have low mileage, and I will still only have two quality days per week; BUT, I am on a program now!!!

I have a training plan laid out to get me through the end of November with several races scattered throughout there to give my quality days a boost! Last week's 5k was a great pre-training reminder of how important these quality days are! You can't run fast off of a low mileage base phase! :)

So, without further ado, here we go!! Time to get fit and fast!!!

Sunday, October 6th
6M with Carolyn at the lake. We both felt great and the weather was nice, so it was a perfect run! 7:50, 7:29, 7:27, 7:18, 7:18, 7:18. We actually tried slowing it down each mile because after yesterday's race we knew we didn't need to run hard today, but it wasn't hard and we couldn't slow down, hah! Must've been the weather!

Monday, October 7th
No running day #1!

Tuesday, October 8th
6M with 6x150m strides. I was extremely, extremely dehydrated today and I ran at noon so the sun was killer! Talk about oppressive! I did get it all in though, and averaged 7:54 pace which is all I need to be running on easy days according to McMillan! ;)  I had quite a bit of quad and hip pain though, so I'm hoping it feels better before tomorrow's workout!

Wednesday, October 9th
8M with 4M of 3'/2'/1' @tempo, 1' recovery between each.
What a nice morning for a workout! A tad bit chilly, but just enough to keep your hands cold and the air crisp, and a tad bit windy, but just enough to give you a good breeze when running into it and a good push when running with it! 2M warm up, a quick 30 second stretch, and then off I went. I planned to do the hard segments at 6:45 pace because Saturday's tempo run is supposed to be around that pace, but looking back I should I have set my goal pace a bit quicker. I jogged the second half of most surges because I was so far below goal pace and didn't want to "crash" before the end. Now I'm quite sure I could have handled it! Paces for the 3', 2', 1' surges were as follows 6:42, 6:40, 6:41, 6:41, 6:37, 6:30, 6:37, 6:28, 6:15, 6:20. Average pace for the four miles was 7:03. Last two cool down miles were good. My greatest nuisance today was my left hip flexor. I think it's just an extension of the quad problems I've been having, but I have ART tonight!

Thursday, October 10th
4M with 6x100m strides.

Friday, October 11th
No running day #2!

Saturday, October 12th
10M with 4M at 6:30-6:45 pace.


Time to toe the line again!! [31M]

I have another race planned this week! Woohoo! I enjoy these weekend races right now because since I am not in shape yet and haven't really done true workouts up to this point, there really is no pressure! It's just a chance to go test my limits, be around the running community, and enjoy the benefits of some extra adrenaline and energy for my run! :)

I definitely still have quad and hip flexor pain, but I am still confident that it's soft tissue. As I slide my palm along my left thigh, I can feel it rolling over lumps in the muscle; whereas it slides nice and smoothly on the right leg. Definitely encouraging to feel that because it makes me less concerned with damaging bones, etc.!

Sunday, September 29th

3M easy, 3M of 4' hard, 1' easy, .75M cool down. I was only going to do a six mile run today, but had to stop for a while after the first three miles for my stomach to un-knot, so we decided to treat it as a warm up and get in a little extra quality this week. I knew I ran hard on some of the four minute segments, but I must have really been booking it at the beginning because I came through close to six miles in 41:40 and that was with my first three miles being relaxed! Super ridiculously hot and windy though because I ran at noon, so it definitely was not a "feel-good" workout. Followed it up with lots of Want More Energy and a shot of Ionix. Should be good tomorrow! :

Monday, September 30th
No running day #1! Strength work during lunch with heavier weights. :)

Tuesday, October 1st
6M + 6 x 150m strides. Spent the entire time on our grass track and changed directions twice! I felt great in terms of energy again, but my quad was extremely sore and achy from yesterday's ART session. Hopefully when that soreness passes, some of the pain I had before he dug in there is gone! Strides were good as well. I started about 5-10m behind Jake's girls and tried to push the back group on them. Worked very nicely!

Wednesday, October 2nd
5M run. Slept in a bit since Jake's team didn't have practice and because of that almost finished too late for work! I had to cut it from 6 miles to 5 miles, but with the aches in my quad and hips I figured that was a good idea. Plus this week will be a new mileage high even if I am a mile short today.

Thursday, October 3rd
6M run with mono fartlek. Did the team's 25 minute warmup with 10' easy, 10' of 30" quick, 2' easy, then 5' easy. After that we started the mono fartlek which consists of 2x90", 4x60", 4x30", 4x15", all with equal rest. Very short workout that is actually harder than it sounds! Ran with one of Jake's girls that fell off their pack early on and was set up for a solo workout. I actually added on an extra 90" moderate effort segment at the end because he had another girl who started the workout late and was having to do the last rep solo.

Friday, October 4th
No running day #2!

Saturday, October 5th
2M warm up, 5k race, 2M cool down. Nothing exciting to share about the warm up, other than I was sweating bullets, had "sticky mouth", and was struggling to get deep breaths. But, I did actually feel good muscularly and adjusted my goal to aim for between 6:00 and 6:05 on the first mile. Looking around, I saw one Kenyan guy and then there was my friend Carolyn whom I was planning to run with. About 800m in, I found myself about 8m behind the Kenyan who seemed to be chilling and trying to help pace me, and other than that, pretty much solo. Came through the mile in 6:02 and actually felt very good at that point, but was concerned that Carolyn was not with me as I knew we would benefit from each other later in the race. At that point we started winding through a neighborhood and the Kenyan began pulling away. Around 1.5M, I remember thinking "I can't breathe at all. I should stop, wait for Carolyn while I catch my breath, and then get back into it with her." But I couldn't convince myself to stop in a race, so I proceeded to just run slower, and slower, and slower! My second mile was a whopping 6:20. But WAIT! It gets worse!! At this point, my breathing was so difficult that I was feeling sick to my stomach!! I kept trying to close my eyes and take in deep breathes while running! All this time, I assumed I was safely 1st female so I was not concerned; but with about a 1/2 mile to go I thought I heard clapping for someone not too far behind me. I tried picking it up however much I could and hoped it was enough to maintain pace from my second mile... Nope! 6:39!!!!!!! I have never run that slow at the end of a 5k race! It was a slightly long course, but the Garmin doesn't lie. I just flat out stunk it up today! Luckily it was a small one and not too embarrassing, but I have some mental work to do between now and the 19th!! Got in a 2 mile cool down after the race, but couldn't squeeze in the third mile because a huge storm had blown in. Literally, that quick! It was super hot, pretty windy, and definitely very humid (as I'm sure you guessed) during the race, and not even 20 minutes later it was raining, COLD, and no humidity!!


Feeling like the turtle this week- And I'm okay with it! :) [21M]

As much as I have loved being a rabbit with my training over the past several years, I am definitely confined to the turtle community this fall. As I finished my progression run last Friday, I walked away so pumped that I had completed my run at the paces I planned. Literally - Pumped! It was only a couple of hours later as I updated my training log that I realized how ironic my excitement was. My last three miles of the progression run were 7:01, 6:51, 6:41 - Just about identical the final three miles of ALL of my daily runs and long runs a year ago. Wow! And no, that progression run was not just a "keeping it easy" thing - I was working! Haha! Granted I am still sick with bronchitis and I have been battling some new aches and pains, but wow!

But honestly, that's part of the magic in this sport. Running is all about overcoming your own goals. Each year, each season, each day comes with different goals. And there is always room for new goals. So even though my goal this last Friday was nothing glitzy and glamorous, if I continue to put in the consistent time and effort, I will eventually get back there. It's a humbling sport, but the rewards are so great that every minute is so very worth it!

Sunday, September 22nd
6M run with Carolyn Kelly at the lake. We decided not to push it this week since we both have some weird aches we're trying to be cautious with, but it was a solid enjoyable run nonetheless! Averaged 7:34 pace for the day, slightly cutting down each mile!

Monday, September 23rd
Planned no running day #1!
AMAZING weather during my lunch hour so I stayed outside and did some form drills and bodyweight work! Very short and quick session before a 1:00 meeting!

Tuesday, September 24th
4M run on the grass track. I planned on doing 6 today, but stopped after 4 to talk to two of Jake's injured girls. Knowing that my quad and hips still aren't 100% and I had gotten in a very solid 4M run already, I decided to play it safe and skip the last two miles for the sake of recovery. Definitely a very good run though. Almost 30' flat for the four miles!
Strength circuit during lunch! Love that I have the energy to get these in again! Thank you ISA!!

Wednesday, September 25th
10' HIIT bike followed by 3 x 8 weights. Drank an e+ shot mid-morning today and felt like superwoman while lifting weights! I even did my last set of bench press with 30lb dumbbells!! That's 60lbs!! Just have to get my quad muscle worked out and I'll be back on the road running!

Thursday, September 26th
2M easy, 3M tempo. I am so happy I got this in!! I wasn't planning to run today, but had another e+ shot mid-morning, was feeling fantastic, and couldn't resist myself! :) Did a mile easy, then a mile of 1' moderate, 1' easy to warm up. After that I knocked out my 3 mile tempo with 6:27, 6:22, 6:18 splits for a 6:22 average pace. Super happy! First mile and a half felt great, the last half was definitely pushing it. That's 3 miles averaging only 9 seconds slower than goal pace for next week's 5k!! AND, my quad felt good the whole time! I'm having some weakness and aching in the upper quad/groin area now, but nothing during the run. Hopefully I'll get it all worked out at ART tonight!

Friday, September 27th
6M run + 6 strides. Felt absolutely FANTASTIC in terms of energy and such, but really achy structurally. If I could figure out my hips, quad, and and hip flexors, I seriously would be able to put together the best training season I've ever had now that I've got these Isa products. Never felt so good in my life!

Saturday, September 28th
~2M on our new dirt trail! I actually wanted to and planned to run more, but one of Jake's girls had to stop her run for an injury so I had to wait with her by the cars. I'm not going to fret over it like I would have in the past though. I got in the important runs this week and know that this doesn't happen all the time, so I have no reason to start doubting things at all!


Training like a runner again!! :) [30M]

All six mile runs, an eight mile run, and an easy four miler... That's what's on tap for this week! Gosh it feels good to see that!

I will be travelling to and from Houston on Monday and Tuesday, but after that my week should be pretty typical. ART bunched together on Wednesday and Thursday, standard workout on Wednesday, and distance run on Friday. I'm hoping I'll be able to continue my daily lunch break workout as well!

Sunday, September 15th
6M with Carolyn at the lake! I love running with her because we talk the whole time, but it's not like when you run casually and talk. We run hard, and we are out of breath, but we still have good conversations! I like it that we can push each other and still enjoy each other's company! Last mile today was 6:27 and the second to last was 6:54!!

Monday, September 16th
No running day #1! Long day of travel...

Tuesday, September 17th
6M + 6 strides. Got in a solid 48 minute run through Pearland this morning! I always enjoy exploring new areas on foot! Followed it up with drills and strides. Had a weird strong pain under the ball of my left foot on the strides but didn't feel anything during the run. Hopefully it's gone tomorrow!
Long day of travel again...

Wednesday, September 18th
4M easy with Jake's girls. Nothing special about this run... But got it in nonetheless! Having piriformis issues, but they are not bothering me while running at all.
Strength circuit during lunch. ART after work.

Thursday, September 19th
No running day #2! Lots of errands and doctor appointments... ART after work.

Friday, September 20th
6M continuous with last 5 progressive. Wasn't sure I would be able to do this run due to some bad pain in my medial hamstring over the last 48 hours, but got it in afterall! Phew! First mile was nice and easy in 8:20, after that I dropped to 7:30 pace and picked it up a tad every 1/2 mile. 7:23, 7:12, 7:01, 6:51, 6:41 for a 7:02 average. I can tell I ran hard for those last three miles but it's still crazy to think that five miles at 7:02 pace is a workout for me now! I used to do 15 at 7:05 pace every Sunday! Hahah! Baby steps, though. Just have to be patient. :) 5 miles in 7:02 average is better than 3 miles at 8:00 pace!
Strength circuit during lunch!

Saturday, September 21st
8M run. Went out to Keist Park and knocked out four very casual, comfortable loops. Never bothered picking up the pace at all - Just got in the miles! :) Definitely still having the same piriformis and medial hamstring pain!


It's a down week!!! [22.5M]

The last three weeks my body has survived 28 miles, 28 miles, and 30 miles! I would be embarrassed to say this a year ago, but this year I'm beyond thankful and happy with it! I have learned to take what I get, enjoy it, and make the most of it!

Though the mileage has been low, my joints and soft tissue in my lower body are not very happy with me. :) I am still working with my ART guy, but I was in Houston for two of these last three weeks, so we're playing catch up. As of now, my left shin and quad, and my right knee and hip are all acting up. Probably as a result of one another, haha. Hopefully this down week and the ART sessions will get things under control so I can get back at it full force next week.

Sunday, September 8th
4M run + quick strength session. I'm definitely still sick with whatever crud I caught last Thursday, so this was not one of the most pleasant runs I've had, by any means. But I am still very glad I got it in! I had just under 15 minutes after I finished before Jake was ready to go home, so I just did a quick full body strength circuit. Hoping to get to the doctor tomorrow!

Monday, September 9th (ART day)
Rest day for running! 25' cross training + strength during lunch! Officially on antibiotics for strep. Boooo. :( Wanted to do a deep cleanse this week while I wasn't running much...

Tuesday, September 10th
4M run + 4 strides in the morning. 25' cross training + core/mobility during lunch! Felt a bit better today than on Sunday's run (in terms of aches and pains), but still feeling beat up. Glad this is a down week!

Wednesday, September 11th (ART day)
4M run in the morning. 25' cross training + form/strength work during lunch! I am really enjoying getting in a second workout during lunch. And I'm SO excited to have the energy for it! There was a time where all I wanted to do was crawl back in bed any chance I got! Not anymore! :) Still having some aches, but again, better today than yesterday! That's one of the things I'm working on during my mid-day session!

Thursday, September 12th 
2.5M warm up, 2M tempo in the morning. 25' cross training + core/mobility during lunch! Drank an e+ shot this morning before leaving for practice. Felt like my 5:30 AM warm up was at 10:00 AM and I was FULL of energy! Woohoo!! I ran even pretty much the entire tempo. 6:24 for the first mile, finishing at 12:41, so a slight negative split, but basically, a nice even tempo. I was pleasantly surprised by it too. I couldn't have done a second one faster followed by even faster 600s like Jake's girls did, but for a first timed workout off the treadmill, I'm taking it! Walked away hungry for more! The spark is rekindled! :)

Friday, September 13th
Rest day from running! 25' bike + strength/mobility.

Saturday, September 14th
6M run, last three miles progressively harder. Very good run this morning. I can't believe how GREAT my legs feel. I'm sure it has a lot to do with the reduced mileage for the past week, but it sure felt awesome! 


Lots of work to do, but we're doing it! [30M!]

Last week I had my second "race" experience since my time off for the fractures. I started back to running (though not much) the first week of June. In August I began adding one quality workout per week, but it was never high intensity. Just a good progression run or fartlek. I have not run more than five days per week, and up until last week I had not run over six miles! But, all of that is changing now! I'm getting stronger and my body is able to handle more. Over the next several months we'll continue with this gradual progression and see how much progress can be made.

If nothing else, these two races I've done have been great eye openers on two accounts. 1. The system works if you are patient and consistent. I have yet to miss a run, but we also have not pushed the intensity or mileage at all. In both races I've averaged at least 20 seconds per mile faster than any single mile I've done in workouts. 2. I have a lot of work to do! What I ran for my 3k yesterday is what I'd like to be at in the half marathon in the next year or so, Lord willing. Lots and lots of work left to do!! But, like I said, we're doing it!

Sunday, SEPTEMBER 1st!! :)
6M with Carolyn Kelly at the lake! Super fun to run with Carolyn. We started much harder than I usually do so even though we talked the whole time, we were both breathing really hard. We were averaging 7:13 pace at four miles so we decided to ease up and relax with 1.5 to go. Finished out the six in 45:14 which is a very solid 7:32 pace!
Strength circuit 

Monday, September 2nd
Rest! Got in a light strength and mobility session while Jake did his workout!

Tuesday, September 3rd
5M + strides. Ran with the DBU girls and enjoyed it. There definitely were not team runs like that when I was on campus. Everyone ran... No jogging. Felt very good muscularly but still having a lot aches in my hips, hip flexors, and IT bands.

Wednesday, September 4th
6M run with the DBU girls. They had a last minute meet scheduled for Thursday so I opted to run with them today and switch my workout for tomorrow when they're gone. It was a solid six miler though. Definitely worked on it, especially the last mile or so. Very impressed with these ladies' efforts! Still need to get these hips and my back sorted out!
Quick strength and core session during lunch.

Thursday, September 5th
Rest - Potentially getting sick?

Friday, September 6th
6M w/ Lab Rat treadmill workout. 1M warm up, then 5 sets of 4' at scheduled pace, 2' easy. The four minute segments were 7:21 pace, 6:48 pace, 6:31 pace, 6:27 pace, 6:18 pace. Very good workout! All recovery segments were around 8:30 pace and I followed it up with 1M easy. Ended up averaging around 7:30 pace for the full 6 miles.

Saturday, September 7th
7M w/ 1',3' surge. I was originally going to do the DBU girls fartlek today, but since I had to run my workout on Friday instead of Wednesday, it didn't make sense. I did the first two surges with them and then just finished out with a good run. My quads were very tight today, which is a first in a while for sure!


So close to going home! [28M]

Only five more days until I am back at home with my husband! Gosh am I ready!

Last week was my highest mileage week since coming back from the fractures! Five milers for my base runs, a six miler mid week, and a seven miler at the end... And of course my two off days!

This week we're planning to repeat the mileage, but change up the quality a little. My shin has been bothering me quite a bit since I haven't had ART for awhile now, so I'm trusting it's just soft tissue. :/

Sunday, August 25th
5M on the road in Columbus. Super, super hilly, and my shin was bugging the mess out of me, but energy wise I felt good. Very glad I was able to keep normal turnover on the hills! Just ran for 40 minutes since I couldn't measure distance.

Monday, August 26th
30' cross training, 10' core. I split up the 30' into 10 biking, 10 on the elliptical, and 10 rowing. Biking was irritating my hip flexor so I decided to break it up! I really enjoyed doing it this way!

Tuesday, August 27th
6M progressive on the treadmill. 8:21, 7:41, 7:23, 7:09, 6:52, 6:40, for a 7:21 average. It's crazy because the last few miles were quite challenging for me, as in I definitely felt this one throughout the morning in my legs, but these paces were my daily runs in the past!! How weird! Anyways, the run itself was good. Surprisingly, I had no shin pain! My legs felt very fresh and peppy! Just had some terrible hip flexor/quad pain on the left side starting around mid-run. I almost cut the workout short for it!

Wednesday, August 28th
5M + 4 Strides. Nice and easy on the way out, but I hauled on the way back. I had to have finished in the same pace range as yesterday's run, for sure! 39:32 for the full run, but I know the way out was really slow. Good strides as well. My hip flexor is definitely a mess though. Tuesday evening is calling my name already!

Thursday, August 29th
5M + 6 strides. Just stayed relaxed at the Memorial Park Loop for this one! :) 2.5 miles out, 2.5 miles back, nothing fancy. When I finished the run, I got in my strides on their paved track and that was that! Pretty serious IT pain on my right leg, which makes sense with the hip flexor and quad pain I'm getting on the left.

Friday, August 30th
20' cross training cardio followed by a short core and strength session. Then I spent a long time foam rolling. Thank goodness 24hr fitness keeps those on hand!!

Saturday, August 31st
7M total with 3k race in a relay! Very fun morning but way too hot for a race at 8:45 or so! Got in a nice 3 mile warm up and a 2 mile cool down to meet mileage. The relay was supposed to start at 8:00 but was running a bit behind. It was about 8:45 by the time it got to my leg, and the sun was quite proud of itself out there!! I started solo which is not good when you haven't done any pace work! The whole first 800m was between 5:00 pace and 5:30 pace. Needless to say, I crashed and ended up averaging 5:58 pace for the run. Super happy with this as I haven't done anything sub 6:20 pace, and I only did that for 4 minutes, haha. But, at the same time, it's a great reminder of how much work there is left to do!!


On the road again! [28M!]

Leaving Dallas this morning to spend the next two weeks at my company's main office. I'm not a big fan of going into the office, but for the chance to work out of my house the other 49-50 weeks of the year, it's well worth it!! :)

Feeling very good after last week's low mileage and ART sessions, so I'm hoping everything holds up for the trip. It will be interesting to see how long the ART work from last week carries forward!

Sunday, August 18th
5M run. Went out to MVCC for the grass and rolling elevation, and man did I feel it when I switched directions! Running clockwise loops is mostly downhill with one shorter uphill segment, but backwards? Gosh, it's killer! Finished the six loops (5.1 miles) in 38:45 which comes out to 7:35 pace! Woohoo! Moving forward, folks. Moving forward.

Monday, August 19th
20' bike, ab challenge. It's my first day at work in the Houston office so I kept this light and quick to be sure I got in on time!!

Tuesday, August 20th
5M run + 4 strides. Memorial Park! I'm back! :) Love that place! 39:18 for the five miles. I felt good, but I did notice my ankles were very sore and tight when I finished as well as during and after my strides?! But very good session regardless!

Wednesday, August 21st
6M progression run. Achy joints and bones, but more so a super upset stomach. :( I had a very stressful, late evening yesterday due to some car trouble, so I am thinking that has something to do with it. Anyways, I ran the first two miles as if I was going to do the workout, then dashed to the restroom, then picked the run back up but just held an easy pace to try and let my stomach settle. 47:09 for the run, so 7:51 pace which is actually what I averaged yesterday. Weird!

Thursday, August 22nd
5M run + 3 strides. I ran very easy on the first mile, in fact it was past 9:00 when I got to the marker! After that I started alternating 1' and 2' surges, both of which I allowed for a 2' recovery period. On the way out I took it as just that - a good recovery. On the way back, I found myself finishing surges very near different groups of guys running, so I just tried to stay the same distance behind them. This put me in a much more fatigued state, but definitely made the run more successful, in my opinion! I finished in 39:07, so about 30:00 for last 4 miles of fartlek. Strides were good but I think I strained or pulled my left quad on the third one so I stopped there? Very weird sensation when I finished and it is still sore now.

Friday, August 23rd
30' cardio, 10' core. I didn't want anything hard, but still wanted to get my day started with a little sweat and moving around. :) Did the trick!

Saturday, August 24th
7M easy run at the park! Was planning on six miles, but started very slow due to another upset stomach, so I ended up going for an extra mile! Plus I did the math while I was running and a 7 miler put my weekly total right in line with the 10% rule! Felt so good to run for close to an hour again - It's been a long time! Still feeling the left shin and inner thigh, but the quad was much better than it felt after my last stride on Thursday.