This Saturday, I participated in the Music City Ultra Trail 25(7)K. I wasn’t originally going to do this race, I had planned on venturing out on some new trails somewhere close to Nashville while my running group participated. I had heard rumors about the insane course this race offered and was trying to avoid running it. Not very courageous of me!! I LOVE exploring new running routes and I needed some time on quality hills to prepare for Gnaw Bone 50K in may. This race offers three things; 1) awesome climbs 2) great practice for technical skills 3) it helps SAVE THE EARTH!
Many people do their speed sessions on Tuesdays, and while I really love being a part of a big group of friends who encourage each other through grueling sets of 800ms, it works best for me to do my speed workouts on Thursdays. I do my longer midweek runs on Tuesdays. I was super proud of my Track Thursday this week. I felt great and recovered beautifully. Healthy running is exhilarating. I forgot how fun it is!
I completed my second marathon last Sunday as part of the Bank of America Chicago Marathon. I finished in 3:56! Even though I PR-ed by 17 minutes and had my first sub 4 hour marathon, I haven't had many positive thoughts since I crossed the starting line.
Someone once told me that finishing a race is how an athlete expresses themselves. That a strong finish is an expression and reflection of the time and effort you put in to your training. This race did not reflect how hard I worked all summer. My quadriceps were in charlie horse level pain from about mile 10 to mile 26.2. I knew it was a physiological problem, and planned to get a blood work up as soon as I got back home. What the heck happened????
Closed out this week with 75 miles, including the last 21 miler before Chicago!! But the best part of it is that P still loves me, despite the fact that I threw a three hour fit of epic proportions on Friday. After a long week, it was just a special mix of insomnia, hormones, and peak training tiredness. I realized I was in the wrong corral for the Chicago Marathon and the deadline to change has already passed. I've been checking weekly and hadn't been able to see my corral until Friday. I think psychologically speaking, it was just the last banana and I was so mad at myself for missing the deadline. After working so hard this season, how could I have overlooked that??
After climbing rocks, descending on gravel, running through sand, and climbing under and over trees, the only painful part of my body after running 20 miles at the Cumberland Plateau Stage Race was where I got stung. The pain of the sting/bite completely stopped me in my tracks out there on the trails. I screamed and yelled bad words. After the race packet suggested learning to identify poisonous and non-poisonous snakes and their bites, I looked around for snakes and checked to see if I had been stabbed by a stick or something, that is how painful it was. When the swelling and pain got worse 72+ hours after the race, I thought I better get things checked out by a doctor!
This weekend I ran in the Cumberland Plateau Stage Race! My very first long trail race! I participated in Stage 2, which was 20 miles. I had a 20 mile run on my training schedule, so I thought this was a more enjoyable alternative to road running! I was excited about the shade while running in the woods, soft trails, and a brand new course!
My inspiration and motivation came from watching the US Olympic Team Trials and the Tour de France. It is so inspiring to watch them during their big events, but even more so to think of the path they took to get there.
There are 29 more days until I am supposed to be running the Rock n Roll Nashville marathon. Except for this IT band is not healing - and by that I mean, I have not allowed it to heal. My chances of running the marathon are not looking good. I refuse to throw in the towel at this point.
Last week, we ran twenty miles, I sprinted the last bit, felt super strong. I wore my old shoes. It was fantastic. I felt great! I wasn't sore the next day, and I completed all of my miles this past week with no problems, including speed sessions.
Today, during mile three, I started having some pain in my knee. At mile four, I was hoping it would go away.
Miles five through seven involved some controlled breathing....
Aside from being healthy and worthy of the mid-chewing 'mmmmmm's' (I'm thinking specifically of the scene in What About Bob? where Bob is eating corn at the family dinner table), my favorite recipes have three things in common:
I signed up for the Rock n' Roll Nashville Marathon back in September, so I'm set to run on April 30th! I am training with Fleet Feet Nashville again, and could not be happier to be running with a group again! Without my running buddies, I still count on my headphones for my runs during the week and am always on the lookout for new music to add. Please please please give me some music suggestions to add to my playlist! (Look here and here for more music to add to your playlist!)
Read down to the bottom where you will find two wonderful gems that you might not have in your music library yet.
The holidays are HERE. I like to incorporate the holidays into every single part of my life, and so, of course, that includes my workouts! Ever wonder what the true spirit of Christmas sounds like? Need help propelling yourself up a big hill during a run? I've compiled a list of joyful Christmas songs to infuse your workouts with hot beatz, cheer, and joy! From Brooklyn Tabernacle Choir, to Diplo, to Justin Bieber, I've got you covered!!
Today, I was hoping to get in 15 - 17 miles. I think I might be training for another marathon. I haven't been able to find a training group for a December marathon, so I am all about finding running buddies to spend my Saturday mornings with!
Unfortunately, my awesome running buddy was sick today, so I decided I would do my run indoors. On the treadmill. I did 10.5 miles intertwined with 10 X 800s. It was more difficult than my 15 mile run through Percy Warner (aka: land of mountainesque hills) last weekend. Not physically, but cognitively. Cognitively, I was so freaking bored. Which made me thankful for the my running buddies!
I sure do love my running buddies! I love that they hold me accountable, whether its showing up at a group run or making sure I did some rehab exercises! I had no idea that running would lead to so many great friendships and support systems! I wanted to take the time to say; running buddies, you are THE BEES KNEES!!!! Cheers to you with a Spicy Bees Knees Cocktail!!
For the first 10-13 miles, I will probably be successfully distracted by the specatators and other runners on the course. But for those next thriteen, more specifically, miles 20 – 26, I will be conducting orchestras, marching to the beat of the drumline, joining a gospel choir, and pretending I’m in the Hunger Games as I inch towards the finish line.
Here is a sample of what will be on my playlist tomorrow! What I need from you is suggestions for music to add to my Marathon playlist!! If there is a story behind the song, please share that as well! Please leave your suggestions in the comments section, or comment on my Instagram post!
Less than 21 days until I will run my first marathon. Today I did 22 miles, the most I have ever run. Four more miles would have been doable, from both a physical and mental standpoint. That gives me an extra boost of confidence for race day! Running with a group has undeniably helped me get to this point. My long runs would not have been as successful if I was on my own.
My focus for 2015 was CHALLENGE. What better way to challenge myself than run a marathon right (read more here)? On January 1st, with encouragement from my sweet friend Stephanie, we both signed up for Fleet Feet Nashville's marathon training group. I used to HATE running with other people because I'm kind of competitive, so I was a little nervous at first! It was the BEST thing I could have done for myself!
Week 7 finishes up with 18 miles. Last Saturday, 2/14/2015, our long run was 17 miles, and it was one of the worst runs of my life. This weekend, our group training run was canceled. I was actually kind of relieved because it was supposed to rain all day Saturday and it was still super icy out. There was no way I was going to miss this week’s long run. My only option was to run on the treadmill. Yep. 18 miles. On a treadmill. Inclines included.
It was tough, and I really looked forward to water breaks, but I felt GREAT!! So much better than last week, in fact, I finished smiling! Granted running on a treadmill and running outside are much different, but my celebration here is for getting through 18 miles without being a Negative Nancy and without feeling like my legs were made of cement.
I hobbled over to my car as quick as possible. As soon as I got myself in the car, I took a deep breath and called P. I glanced at the stack of clothing lying on the passenger seat. My nephew’s last basketball game of the season started in 15 minutes. There is no way I was going to make it.
‘IT WAS AWFUL. Really, really difficult. It was so hilly.’ And then the tears came. I was so disappointed in myself. This was the worst run that I can remember. I didn’t enjoy very much of it and finished with a less than admirable attitude.