Category Archives: Working Out

In & Out of the gym workouts

The Bad Run: First Half of the Story

long run

I should have known when I saw so many road kills:

Three turtles, one sweatshirt that I thought was a skunk, a frog, a huge black snake that made me literally jump into the middle of the road, and hundreds of bugs…and then I was at 12.5 miles.  I stopped for the first time, feeling great, having kept a good pace. So far, I hadn’t fueled at all other than water and 10 raisins at the 5-mile mark.  My husband had just pulled up beside me in the park to give me a banana and Gatorade. So nice. I stopped and ate. I started again. I was at 12.75…just started,really, when my watch beeped. Beeped and then stopped.

Now, at this point, I also should have known, when my watch died, that I, just like the road-kill before me was about to die. Not literally. Just running-wise. And I did:  I hit that “wall” and the next 10 miles sucked the ever-living life out of my body and my mind.  How do I know it was 10 miles, since my watch died? I drove it of course. After I cried my face off, and swore up and down that I would never do that again. 22.75 miles of HORRIBLE.

That was one week and 5 days ago.

The next run that I did, I paced a bit better. Planned only to go 12 miles in total, and took a mix of Gatorade with water with me and my trusty 10 raisins. I didn’t know exactly when I planned to fuel, but I knew I didn’t want to do it too early, or too late…

So when I saw that first roadkill- frog this time- I knew it was my sign. Time to fuel before you die.

I know- dramatic. But seriously. It literally has taken a whole week to feel good again. I have been mentally in the hole on this, and not happy at all to take the two short runs this week that should have been twice as long, according to my race plan. Self deprecating anyway, I joked to people that I hate running…Do I really? No. But I really dislike being in pain and running when it isn’t fun. Because I normally run for fun. I usually enjoy it.

But the overdoing did me in.  Besides the mental aspect of that one terrible run, that helped drain my adrenals so badly that my kidneys hurt, my head hurt, my appetite for salt went sky-high and I couldn’t ever feel rested. I did a lot of reading on this one, my friends, and the adrenal gland is seriously something for athletes to watch out for…not to mention parenting, working, cleaning the house and all that other busy-ness that drains our energy to complete depletion.

The overdoing is the suck of it. I never want to do a run like that again, and I hope I never do. Lesson Learned: Fuel early. Charge your watch before a long run. Best foods to recharge the adrenals: salmon, leafy greens, lemon water, sweet potato, blueberries, himalayan sea salt, nuts & seeds, cauliflower, broccoli, avocado, decaf teas. Stay away from: too much caffeine, dairy, gluten (source). And get plenty of sleep. “Yes, 4 children, mommy needs a nap.”

I am linked up with MCM Mama Runs today!

Thursday Training Update

It is week 5 of my 18 week marathon training plan…I am slacking.  And hoping.

Hoping that I can stop slacking!

watch running shoes

My vacation was in a place that I love to run:
uphills, downhills, trails.  Just fun and really different than what I normally do.

I am trying to run LESS than I would, which is easy since I am feeling little burn-out now that I am home from vacation and not sure what race I am fitting in between now and October.

Are you doing a good race in New England up until the end of August or early September? I would love to know a pretty race course up to 12 miles. See? Not asking too much!

rolling hills

I was good to change up the routine.

Here is the run-plan for the week:

Sunday: 6 miles- done
Monday: 4 miles- done
Tuesday: Off
Wednesday: Off
Thursday: 3 miles- today!
Friday: Off
Saturday: 9 miles

So I am up to speed so to speak, and today of course is the 3-miler, so not too rough! The off-days aren’t really off of course.  I will be doing PIYO, walking, or other non-knee activities!

The best thing about vacation running is the change of scene from my regular routes, so I may try to mix things up going forward if I can find some new loops. This is an old, but perfect tweet for me today:

Running Training Plans: From Beginner to Expert


race training

Although I am just posting this, I have started to think about running a bit more over the past month, and cross training a little less to get ready for my upcoming marathon training schedule.  Saying “marathon training schedule” sounds super rigorous but it really isn’t any more than planned increases in distance and slowly building up to the long run.

I don’t want to take away from the accomplishment- because it does take dedication and time, but before you say that you could never do this, I am living proof that anyone can do this barring injury… so that is my goal this year: Not to just do it, but to do it so that I feel good after it’s over and not injured for the following months!

My outlook on life in general is “moderation in all things” as the best bet for healthy living and healthy mind, so this is no exeption.  The marathon training can push this a bit toward the “too much of a good thing” side of the scale, so I have to keep focused on keeping that balance by cross training and having active-rest days (read: PIYO!) to prevent both burn-out and injury.

My own plan is a major mix-up of several plans but I really just use them as a guide, and try to keep the week-long miles on target, instead of worrying about following it true to the day by day plan.

Here are a few that I know lots of runners follow and are from authorities in the area of running and race training:

Hal Higdon
(FREE) All levels of programs, easily adaptable. Has an app for your phone and an interactive site. I am still a novice runner with this plan, as I don’t like to add too many miles, as it seems to not work for me.  I like the flexibility and growth in these plans the best.

Cool Running
(FREE)All levels of training.  Authority on races, events around the country to participate in and work up to with their various programs.

Runner’s World Training Plans
These are pay-for plans…I am not into that, but if you are good with paying, they offer apps, daily emails to keep you on track, and lots of options, like “beat 5 hours for your first marathon” that are unique.

Jeff Galloway Plans
(FREE) Wonderful for a beginning runner, or someone who wants to avoid injury.  You can run/walk a marathon without injury according to his plans. Last year when I was fighting through injury, I loved his philosophy.

What to look for in a plan:

I know people who look for marathon training come from all levels, so I won’t pretend to know the best program out there- nor will I create one for you…everyone has to trial and error their own way through a given program and even then, adapt that one program to what is best for their own body.  I am a firm believer in listening to your own body and pushing it when you can and resting it to let it recover and build strength.

There is so much information out there (so much of it worthless but pretending to be the “one” best way to do something) that to give you just one recommendation would be just wrong! When you look for a plan, make sure it is from an expert, not an enthusiast.  The difference is that an expert is a fitness professional who is trained in the field and has some kind of  certification in coaching (like the RRCA- Road Runners Club of America or some other reputable association).  An enthusiast is someone like me, that loves to run, but doesn’t have the background in training.

You wouldn’t be a Librarian just because you like books, any more than a running expert just because you like to run…I have to emphasize this, because it is so important with Google just spitting out information. Ex. You search “running plans” and you get tons of garbage…just buyer-beware! Only follow a plan from an authority with the certifications. (*Also, you should always check with your health professional to make sure you are starting from a healthy place and able to train for a race.)

Whatever plan you follow, just enjoy the process and listen to your body.  Best of training and Happy Tuesday!

P.S. Don’t forget to enter the Giveaway for the BolderBand- my no-barrette hero! It is open to anyone over 18 years of age in the US, up until 11:59pm EST 6/17.  That is tomorrow!!! Get on it! Giveaway is Over.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

P.S.S. I added a Race Page to this blog to keep track of my upcoming and previous races- I like doing a race more than once, to see how I have improved over time, so I think this year I am repeating a half marathon that I did last year, and doing a new marathon this fall.  I love love love running with my friends, so if any of you are near the Boston or Providence areas for races, let me know because I am always up for adding another few races before mid-August!