30 January 2012

Taking the Brooks PureConnect on a Run

So after my fantastic track workout last Monday my week went downhill in a hurry.  On Tuesday my energy was low but I pushed through P90X2's Plyocide (which is my favorite FYI) and I just wasn't feeling it.  By Wednesday morning it all made sense- I headed to work at 6:30am feeling worse than I have felt in a very long time.  I actually wanted to cry because I just wanted to lay down in bed instead of go to work- normally I can just suck it up when it comes to being sick but I just felt plain awful.  Luckily a few hours later I was able to head home and rest.  That day is mostly a blur!  I do know that I missed my tempo run as well as X2 Total Body and Ab Ripper.

I also got my Thursday shift at work covered- I wasn't sure how I would be feeling but I did know for sure I should not be contaminating the public or my coworkers with this horrible cold.  Anyways I did feel a tad better when I woke up on Thursday so I headed to the mall after lunchtime to try on a new pair of running shoes I had my eye on.  Because darn it, if I couldn't go for a run I would do the next best thing- shop for new running gear!  I found the Brooks PureConnects at Nordstrom's and really liked how they felt on my feet. 

My new shoes- Brooks PureConnect.  Aren't they pretty?
They have the same heel drop (4mm) as the Saucony Kinvara 2's (my current preferred shoe) but felt a bit more bouncy and had a definite arch, which felt good on my feet.  They did seem a bit narrow but then again the salesman tied those shoes on my feet so tightly I thought my feet would fall off!  I don't know if I am weird or what, but I like my shoes to be almost loose- otherwise my feet fall asleep.  They felt better when I loosened the laces up quite a bit.  They didn't carry the pretty new purple color but I decided the blue and white would match a lot of my running clothes so I went ahead and got them.

Thursday was a technical rest day for me so I didn't miss any workouts.  Friday I was set to do a 7 mile run at my long tempo pace (8:56) as well as X2 Yoga, and I was really happy when I woke up Friday morning to pretty blue skies and a body that felt almost back to normal.  I waited until around noon to head out for my run so that the sun would actually feel warm, but then had the dilemma of what the heck to wear.  Would I be too hot?  Too cold?  Shoot.  I probably spent 20 minutes changing my mind over and over.  I finally opted for capri tights, my running skirt, a sleeveless tech shirt and a long sleeve pullover.  I also wore my new shoes (of course!) and a hat to keep the sun out of my eyeballs. 

Ready for my sunshine run!
I set out to do a 1 mile out and back from my house just to be sure the shoes were not going to irritate my feet- when I got back to my house the shoes felt great but I was really warm so I decided to ditch my long sleeve shirt.  I didn't want to waste time changing into a tshirt so I headed out in my sleeveless top hoping I would keep warm enough, and I did.  The sun felt great and so did my energy, which surprised me.  I wasn't trying too hard to hit my goal pace, since I was still a bit sick, but I was feeling just fine and my pace felt challenging but not hard. 
Total distance- 7 miles  Total time- 62 minutes   Average pace- 8:53 (goal 8:56) 

I was happy with the performance of my new shoes.  The Pure Connects have several key features that I really appreciate, especially after taking them on a couple of runs.  There is a "split toe" in front that allows the big toe to move separately from the other toes which helps with balance and push off.  Another feature is the "nav band" that runs over the instep and helps the shoe fit like a glove- this is probably why the shoe feels narrow, it almost hugs your foot.  I think this feature actually helped keep me from pronating -I usually have to really concentrate on my step to keep from doing that but these shoes really encourage a natural foot strike.  I feel like the shoe is a nice balance between minimal and supportive and so far I really like them!  Anybody else out there wearing these?  What do you think?

Anyways, after my run on Friday I decided to skip yoga- I had my mind set on another crazy project!  We decided to move my son into the smaller "treadmill/pantry/coat closet" spare room and create our own home gym in his bigger bedroom.  We have been talking about doing something like this for a while now, mostly about building an actual room in the backyard but this seemed much easier (and cheaper) and darn it- who doesn't like instant gratification?? 

One side of the new 'home gym'
It took many hours Friday afternoon/night as well as most of Saturday to complete the process but we now have our very own "home gym" in our house!  My son is thrilled with his cozy new room as well, and it forced us to go through a lot of junk that had been piling up.  Win-win-win all around!  There are still some details that need to be worked out and a few pieces of equipment we want to acquire but for now- it's AWESOME!!! 

The other side.  It is still a bit cluttery in there, but it is going to be great!
So I also missed my X2 Power and Balance on Saturday, but I did get to play soccer that night.  And Sunday I thought I may make something up but decided to just rest and start the week over on Monday.  I guess P90X2 is going to be at least P97X2 for me-oh well, what can a sick runner girl do?!?   

26 January 2012

A Slushy Run and Outdoor Speedwork

Ready for my slushy run!
Last Friday I had a 6 mile "long run" on my training plan- and there was still tons of snow/slush outside on the ground.  What to do, what to do?  After being cooped up at home with the kids all week, or at work I was craving some time alone.  The kids and I headed out for a walk (secretly I was testing out the sidewalks for my potential run) and when we got back home a little after 1pm my hubby was there!  His office had closed early and the only thing going through my mind was FREEDOM!! 

One of my favorite houses to look at- this road has some beautiful old houses on it
I told the family I was going to go for my run- they looked at me like I had 3 heads.  I think they fully expected me to change my mind until I actually started out the door.  I almost didn't make it off of my road though- my feet were completely soaked in the first 3 minutes!  But I told myself I would just suck it up for 1 mile and if I hated it I would go finish on the treadmill.  Did I mention it was actually raining as well?  It was. 

The hardest/worst part- leaping through the mess at all of the side roads! 
I often stepped in deep puddles and probably
looked like an uncoordinated ballerina leaping through them!
The ground was full of snow, slush, puddles and more slush.  It was raining and ice was falling off of trees and telephone poles.  I kept stepping in deceptively deep puddles that went up over my ankle with icy cold water.  It was AWESOME!  I felt like a little kid out there.  I didn't listen to any music because I wanted to be aware of my surroundings- cars were still having a hard time getting around and I saw plenty of spinning tires.

The halfway point- Wright Park is behind me a block or so.
What I learned about running in snow and slush and puddles:
1.  It is exhausting in a way I hadn't realized.  Kind of like running on soft sand.  By mile 4 my muscles were fatigued.
2.  I dressed perfectly for the conditions.  I must be getting better at this.  I wore compression socks under normal socks and they must have somehow kept my feet warm.  Because they WERE warm, which I found odd!  My feet are rarely warm inside my house, under blankets.  I also wore running tights, my running skirt, my Nike combat long sleeve, a tech t shirt, a North Face jacket (non running but waterproof), gloves and my lulu hat.

I liked that snowman so I had to stop and take a picture! 
Almost looks like a postcard.
3.  It wasn't slippery out due to the rain and the little warmer temperature so I didn't use anything on my shoes for traction and I was fine.  I wore my old Saucony Kinvara 2's and they did great.  They dried out completely by Monday!  I am not sure about getting Yak Trax- but they would have been necessary for some of the other days had I wanted to run outside.
4.  Do not try and hit your set pace when running in the snow!  I just focused on not falling and avoiding as many puddles as possible, walking in places if I needed to.  The worst spots were the cross streets.
5.  Running in the snow is fun.  You can warm up and dry off later!

That was rad!
Soaking wet and a runner's high- does it get any better than that??
Total distance: 6 miles     Total time:  1:07:34     Goal pace 8:54- not even close!!!
Ready for my track workout! 
On Monday I was scheduled to do a track workout including a warm up, 4x1000 meters at a 7:45 pace (400 meter rest intervals between) then a cool down.  They have been completely remodeling the park down the street from my house and I noticed a path around the grass field last time we were there -it just happens to be 400 meters exactly!  Coincidence?  Nah.  They made that for me to run around with the bonus of having somewhere the kids can play if they are with me.  Wasn't that nice of them?

This was the only part of the path with snow/ice on it.  I made sure I knew the best
area's to step as I went around and I didn't slip one time!
So I dropped the kids at school and headed to the park.  There was still snow and ice in spots so while I did my warm up I also tested my footing and cleared some of the snow off the path.  I was a bit nervous- I had been doing all of my track workouts on a treadmill lately (since September!!) so I was hoping I could still get them done.  I had my Garmin set for .62 miles so I decided to do my warm up as 2 x .62 so it would be even for my intervals.  It was about 36 degrees outside so the "warm up" took a while!  First .62- 6:18.  Second .62- 5:38, I did a few strides and butt kicks to get my muscles ready.
The park is on the backside, away from the road which is nice.
And then it was go time- I started my Garmin and off I went.  I have my watch set to show my average pace -I kept checking to make sure it was at 7:45.  Sometimes it would be faster so I would slow down a bit- after all, I did have 4 of these to get through!  After each interval I would walk a lap for recovery- the last interval was definitely my hardest but I also pushed my hardest knowing I was done.  It was my fastest!  Here are my results (goal time 4:48)
1- 4:43
2- 4:45
3- 4:44
4- 4:40
Done!
I was so happy that I could still get these done off of a treadmill!  I love speed work, it is one of my favorite workouts- the way you have to push yourself sooo hard and you think you can't but then it's over and you DID IT!!  I guess it gives me the most satisfaction.  I am going to do my best to do the rest of my track repeats outside, now that I have a great spot to do it.  My cool down was 2 more .62 repeats so that I would end at an even 5 miles.  I am weird like that, I always like to end on an even number. 

Total distance: 5 miles      Total time:  43:02

Did you get out and run in the snow?  Did you love it or hate it?  Did you use Yak Trax?  Should I buy some? 

What about track repeats?  Love them or hate them? 

Oh yes, and the results of Tuesday's weigh in- I lost 1 more pound.  Way better than zero, but still wish it was higher.  I notice the difference in how my clothes are fitting so I suppose that is a good sign!

21 January 2012

Tiffany vs Snowpocalypse 2012

Looking out my front door on Wednesday morning at 4:30am- it was snowing
So remember how I said my workouts would be in the same order each week with the only variation being the details of my run?  Well I didn't take into account what happens when our area gets hit by a huge (for us) snow/ice storm!!  It started snowing last Sunday and progressed into a full on blizzard by Wednesday, followed closely by an ice storm.  Wow oh wow! 
Looking out my front door Thursday morning at 5:15am- freezing rain was
falling and everything had an ice glaze!
I live very close to my job.  Close enough to walk if necessary, so guess who gets the 4am wake up call when the roads are terrible?  Me.  I don't mind, I would rather my fellow coworkers stay safe and some of them live pretty far away so it would be ridiculous for them to drive in when the roads are so bad.  All week long school was canceled, most offices were closed and people were supposed to just stay home and be safe.  But here is the ironic part- people were not able to get to work, but by golly they could make it to Starbucks! 
One of the trees in my backyard encased in ice!
The whole tree covered in ice
We were SO busy and short handed because not many of my coworkers could get to work to help us.  I guess people just needed their coffee and some sense of normalcy in their day.  Most of the customers were very appreciative we were open- and only a few were irritated that we closed early so we could get home safely during the daylight.  After 5 days straight of working crazy shifts I was completely exhausted!

Thursday morning was by far the worst- I looked out the window at 5:15am and everything looked like it was coated in melted marshmallows.  There was freezing rain coming down and it was hitting the snow and just smoothing everything out.  I attempted to get the car ready to drive but the layers of ice were so thick I just decided to walk to work.  It was very slippery but only took about 10 minutes, much faster than waiting for the car to deice!
Walking to work at 6am on Thursday morning.  I walked in the road- it was sanded
and not as slippery as the sidewalks.  It's about 1/2 mile or so.
Finally, on Friday I had a day off from work so the kids and I headed out for a walk so I could take some photo's of this wild weather.  Everything was literally coated in a thick layer of ice- it was one of the craziest things I have ever seen.  The temperature was slowly warming up and there was a light rain falling so every once in a while we would hear a "crack" and ice would come crashing to the ground from trees and power lines.
Taking a little walk.  The roads were a total mess.
The kids were having fun knocking all of the ice off of the branches.
We got pretty lucky- our power stayed on and none of our trees came crashing down.  I know several people (including my mom and grandma) still do not have power and might not have any until Monday.  Our new car handles really well in the snow- hooray for AWD!  I am ready for the snow to go away now so everything can go back to normal.  Please and thank you.
All that ice on a single blade of grass!
Results of my Tuesday weigh-in:  ZERO.  A big fat irritating zero pounds lost.  I guess that week 2 Biggest Loser curse is true.  I posted 10 workouts to Daily Mile and ate perfectly all last week.  I was rather disappointed.  Speaking of Biggest Loser- I could not believe that Joe just quit.  Actually walked off of the show and went home willingly.  And I was really shocked when Lauren was voted off- I'm sorry but Nancy or Conda should have been sent home.  Conda is obnoxious. 

So here is what my workouts have looked like this week:

Monday:
7 mile speedwork run on the treadmill (snow on ground)
P90X2- Core

Tuesday:
Snowball fight and playing in the snow.  The video below is of my crazy dog.
Plyocide
video

Wednesday:
6 mile tempo run on the treadmill (tons of snow)
P90X2- Ab Ripper
*intention to do Total Body on Thursday

Thursday:
Completely exhausted from work, decide to rest instead. 
I did "snow shoe" to work- does that count?

Friday:
6 mile run in the slush and snow and rain (I will do a seperate post for this one!)
*intention to do yoga after the run, skipped it because I was tired
*Soccer was canceled due to road conditions

Saturday (feeling guilty for skipping so many workouts):
P90X2- Total Body
P90X2- Yoga

Sunday:
My intention is to do P90X2- Balance and Power after work tomorrow, then I will have officially done all of my workouts for the week!  Might even do Recovery and Mobility if I get ambitious.

So, the workouts were all mixed up but the good news is that I managed to squeeze them all in!! 

Tiffany- 1 
Snowpocalypse 2012- 0

Are you on Daily Mile?  If so, we should be friends!  One of my goals this year is to leave more comments on blogs I follow and also for my friends on Daily Mile.  I know that I love when others do this for me and I am terrible at returning the favor.  But I am making an effort to be more supportive and encouraging.  Many times it is because I am on my phone instead of the computer, but I will make it work.

And finally, here is a music video that I think is pretty cool.  Click on it and tell me what you think:

Somebody That I Used to Know

15 January 2012

My Plan- Thursday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday

X2 Baby!
My workouts will be pretty much in the same order each week, with the only change being the exact details of my run.  So I will pick up where I left off last time, with a look into my daily workout routine. 

Thursday:
Rest Day.  Don't you just love a well earned rest day?  I certainly do!
Guess what?  We got some snow today!! 
Friday:
RLRF- Long Run:

My "long" run for the week was a 5 miler at an average pace of 8:56 per mile.  For this 5K training plan all of my paces are below 9 minute miles.  How crazy is that??  I dropped the kids off at school and headed down to the Ruston Way waterfront around 9am.  It was a beautiful morning, the sun was out and it was about 29 degrees.  BRRRR.  I didn't bring gloves with me (oops) so my fingers and toes were really cold for the first mile or so and I wasn't able to check my garmin very often since my hands were tucked up into my jacket.  So I did my best to run by feel and keep my pace just under 9 minutes.  

I was able to run down into the new Chinese Garden area of Reconciliation Park which was really pretty.  I snapped a few photos and headed back to finish up my run.  My mile times- 8:55, 8:32, 8:50, 8:53, 8:55.  Not too shabby for running by "feel" for a total time of 44:08 and an average pace of 8:49!
Isn't it pretty?
P90X2:
X2- Yoga- After my run I headed home for a nice yoga session.  I shed a few layers, cranked up the heat in my house and pushed play on the DVD player.  I took yoga classes at my gym once a week for about a year and a half so I do know a lot of the basic yoga poses which is helpful for this workout.  Yoga makes me happy- I love how it stretches and challenges my muscles and is just such a comforting workout.  This DVD is very basic yet challenging at the same time and I am interested to see how I improve after I do it a few times.  Total time- 68 minutes

Soccer:
I have been playing on an indoor coed soccer team for about 2 years now, and although I had never played soccer in my life before this I am really enjoying it.  Our games are generally on Friday nights and once in a while they are on Saturdays.  This time our game was at 8pm and we were offered the chance to play an "extra" half so we took the opportunity.  Each half is 24 minutes so that is a total of 72 minutes of soccer playing to finish off my day!  We lost the game, but had a lot of fun plus it was our first game in almost a month. 

Saturday:
P90X2:

Warming up with some squats
X2 Power and Balance- I think this workout should actually be called 101 ways to do a plank!  Tons of core work combined with working on balance moves while lifting weights.  Also plenty of work on the stability ball.  Easy peasy. 

Supposed to be lowering down onto my elbows and then pushing back up here. 
I kind of almost can do it.  Once.  And I need to lower my booty a bit.
The crazy thing about these videos is that the time goes by really quickly and before you know it you are exhausted and almost done.  Total time- 63 minutes
Hello hamstrings, yes I feel you crying.  We are almost done!
I survived!
Sunday:
P90X2:
These photos are fromt the warm up of the Power and Balance DVD. 
I promise I change my clothes each time I workout!
X2 Recovery and Mobility- I was feeling pretty sore today (gee wonder why?  refer to FRIDAY above) especially in my quads which is most likely from soccer.  When I got home from work I had the option to take another rest day or do this DVD. 

Before I could think about it too much I threw on some workout clothes and pushed play.  Best decision I could have made, seriously.  This workout is really just an amazing stretch/foam rolling sequence.  It loosened up all of my tight muscles and made my body feel so much better.  It kind of felt like I had gone and had a massage. 

Hurts so good
I love my foam roller, and I think I may have a small crush on Tony Horton.  HA!
This move is called the "crawly crab".  The first time I heard him say it
I thought he said the "holy crap" which is pretty accurate!
So I completed my entire workout plan that I created, with the exception of X2 Ab Ripper on Wednesday.  I feel really good, I was a bit sore today but nothing like I was last week.  Tomorrow begins week 3 of P90X- 16 days down, 64 to go!  Anybody else get snow at their house today?  I think we might even get a bit more before it melts over the next couple of days.  Winter is definitely here!   

12 January 2012

My Plan- Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday

My focus right now is on increasing my overall fitness using the P90X2 program, gaining speed for a 5K personal best in March using Run Less Run Faster (RLRF) and losing a few pounds by cutting my calories down and making healthy food choices.  I have created a detailed training plan for myself and tested it out last week to make sure it would be manageable while also working my real job and being a mom.  My days are extremely full but I made it work every day- no excuses!  I HAVE to create a plan for myself or else I am quick to just skip a workout.  I am not sure what it is, but if it is written on the calendar- by golly I am going to get it done!

So here is my very basic diet, I don't like too many rules or else it is too complicated.  I eat 4 times a day, roughly 400 calories each time for a daily total of 1,600 calories.  This seems to be a good number for me, I am always just a bit hungry when I go to bed but my energy level is great through the day and my workouts have not suffered.  I make sure my food choices will keep me full- the biggest "bang" for my buck if you know what I mean.  For breakfast every day I have been having oatmeal with some nuts, a little brown sugar and cinnamon plus a nonfat greek yogurt (fage brand).  The combination of a complex carb and protein seem to keep me full the longest. 

Some other things I eat a lot of:  oatmeal, eggs, chicken, salad, bananas, applesauce, protein bars, protein shakes, cottage cheese, soup and rice.  It may seem kind of boring but if you see food mostly just as a fuel source for your body and less as a source of pleasure it makes sense.  Eat what makes you feel good and what helps you achieve your goals.  I don't deny myself things, but I just make sure they are in moderation and only once in a while. 

I am a huge fan of the showThe Biggest Loser- I love watching the transformations the contestants go through.  I also love the trainers and miss Jillian A LOT, although Dolvett and Bob are making me laugh this season with their competitiveness.  Boys!!  Anyways, I decided to make Tuesdays my "weigh-in" day, just like they do on the show. 

My results for week #1 - Total weight lost 2.5 pounds (I am hoping for 1-2 pounds a week) Sweet!

And here is what my workouts look like:
Monday:
RLRF-  Track repeats:
Last Monday the plan was a one mile warm up, 2x1600 at 7:53 (3:00 walk/recover between), 1x800 at 7:38 then a half mile cool down.  I love speed work in a way people probably shouldn't love speed work.  It's quick, it's sweaty and then it's done.  Awesome.  I used Dolvett's mantra here and repeated "hardwork. dedication" over and over at the end of those repeats to get me through them.  I may or may not have pretended he was there shouting it with/at me.  4 miles done in just under 33 minutes.
P90X2:
X2 Core- This workout was done after my run and was much easier this week than last week!  A lot of balance moves that also incorporate strength.  Planks, warrior positions, squats, lunges, stability ball, burpees and push ups.  Tony Horton is a dork but I like him and he makes me laugh while I sweat for 57 minutes.

Tuesday:
P90X2:
Plyocide- just like it sounds, a combination of plyometrics and suicide LOL.  This workout has a lot of jumping and explosive type movements.  This is a challenging, fast paced intense workout but I think it is my favorite video.  This workout is also 57 minutes.

Wednesday:
RLRF- Tempo Run:
Last week I was so SORE from Monday and Tuesday's workouts I had to skip my run!  But yesterday I felt great so I followed the plan.  1 mile warm up, 2 miles at 8:27, 1 mile easy, 2 miles at 8:27 then a one mile cool down.  I found the tempo run to be challenging but manageable, not as hard as the track repeats.  7 miles in 62 minutes.

P90X2:
X2- Total Body and X2- Ab Ripper.  Wednesday is definitely my hard day- last week all I managed was the total body workout for the day.  And I "observed" a lot!  This week I added the run and then did X2 Total Body.  Still couldn't quite manage ab ripper, although time constraints had a lot to do with that as well.  Total body is just like it says- total body.  A lot of dumbell movements, pull ups, lunges etc.  There is a move on there I cannot do for the life of me, it is called the one handed tricep kickback on a stability ball (or something like that).  You get in plank position, balance yourself with one arm across the stability ball then do tricep kickbacks.  Right.  What I do is fall on my face.  But-I will conquer that move eventually!  Total time 64 minutes.  Next week I WILL add the Ab ripper.

So that is the first half of what my week looks like- just add in there a full day of work, kid's homework, dinner, laundry, dishes and maybe a shower once in a while and my day is completely full!  What workout plan are you currently using, or do you just like to wing it?  Have you ever done P90X, and if so how did you like it?  What do you think I should dress up like for the St Paddy Day race- typical green attire or go for something creative like a rainbow?  Anybody out there doing a fun valentine's day race?  Sorry for the lack of photos- I am going to figure out a way to take some next week so you can see my attempt at these videos! 

   

08 January 2012

My 2012 Race "Wish" List

My race "Bling"!
For a while I thought I would take a little break from running a lot of races and just pick a few choice ones to run this year.  But then I start looking a race calendars and training plans and talking to friends and realized I am not ready to take a step back just yet.  I LOVE races, in a way that I have never really felt about anything before in my life.  I love everything about them- the training, the atmosphere, other runners, the pain, the finish line, the swag bag, the expo, the friends, the outfit, the sense of accomplishment- I love it all.  Even the honey buckets.  Ok, I don't really love the honey buckets but I do appreciate them! 
First of many honey bucket stops during Ragnar! 
FYI- that is hand sanitizer in my hand.
So here it is, my "wish" list of races for 2012.  I am currently only registered for the 5K on St Patrick's Day, but hope to get registered for a couple of the others that may sell out soon.  I would also like to add a couple of 10 or 12K's to my list of races.  I am not quite ready to pull the 26.2 card again just yet.  Maybe next year.  Hey, I said maybe!  Hmmm- better than the "no way in the world do I ever want to do that again" that has generally been my thought when I think about running another marathon.  Baby steps people, baby steps!

5K's:
*March 17th- St Paddy Tacoma
*April 14th- Y Run for Kids
*December 15th- Santa Runs Tacoma

10K and 12K's:
*March 31st- Dash Point Trail Run, 10K
*June 9th- Sound to Narrows, 12K
*September 9th- Iron Girl 10K

Half Marathon's:
*May 5th- Cinco de Mayo
*May 6th- Tacoma City 
*May 20th- Capital City
*June 23rd- Seattle RnR
*August 4th- Tacoma Narrows Half
*September 16th- You Go Girl

Relays and Other Races:
*July 20th- Ragnar Relay Northwest Passage
*October 13th- Defiance 50K (15K course)
*August 4th- JBLM Down and Dirty Mud Run 8K
*June 2nd- Rainier to Ruston 50M relay (4 person team)
*September 1st- Over the Narrows 10 mile run

If you are on my relay team I promise to wear calf sleeves, socks, sandals and various
other awesome accessories while offering you water!  Who wouldn't want me to help them hydrate???
I could probably continue adding to this list all day long but I will just leave it at this for now.  These are just some races that have caught my eye- I will need to make some decisions in the next month or so and really get my calendar focused so I can register for a few of these races.  Anyone want to come race with me?  Any fun races I should know about?     

I will also help ensure we are safe AND entertained at the same time while
crossing the street by doing a little dance!
One of my goals for this year is to move to a higher level in the half fanatics club- and I am going to do that by running 2 half marathons in 48 hours.  I am really considering the Cinco de Mayo and the Tacoma City back to back in early May to achieve this.  Anyone else ever do back to back half marathons??  Does this sound crazy?  Any suggestions on how to train for something like this?  

I would also like to take a trip to Boise and run a race there with my long lost BRF (best runner friend) Cynthia.  So find us a race and I will head over the mountains- somewhere between a 10K and half marathon would be great!!!  What do you think BRF??  Send me some races and lets get it on the calendar!
BFR's at the Seattle Rock and Roll last June
      

04 January 2012

Applying What I Learned

I finally got my hair cut- took a few inches off, it feels so much better!
There are two things I learned from my second year in the running world that seem to be important in meeting my goals for 2012.  Notice I say goals- I don't think I am actually going to make any resolutions this year.  I haven't quite decided.

#1- If I want to run faster, I need to train faster.  Seems fairly obvious right?  For some reason I guess I thought the more miles I logged the easier running would be and I would just magically get faster over time.  But it just doesn't work that way, and I didn't really believe it until I started the Run Less, Run Faster program last August.  I got over my fear of running track repeats, tempo runs and managed to knock about 15 minutes off of my previous half marathon time, finishing under 2 hours!  If I want to run faster I need to train faster, the end.

#2- Trying to lose weight while training for a marathon is harder than it sounds.  I don't know how to explain it, but I have a heck of a time trying to cut calories and put in high miles each week.  After reading other blogs, I know I am not alone.  Last year one of my resolutions was to reach my goal weight- yaaaeeehhh that didn't happen.  In fact I am a couple of pounds heavier than I was at this time last year.  I blame December mostly.

My new "gym"
So for the next 90 days I have committed myself to doing the P90X2 program along with the Run Less, Run Faster 5K training plan with the ultimate goal of getting a 5K PR at the St. Paddy Day  race in Tacoma on March 17th.  I am on week 2 of the running plan and 3 days into the P90X2 videos.  I am more sore right now than I have been in a long time!  I am excited to see the results of my efforts- I have also started counting my calories again and making sure that what I choose for calories is healthy.  It would probably make that PR easier if I dropped a few pounds. 

My coach here makes sure my form is correct.  Please ignore the
random clutter- I obviously do!
I weighed in this morning, and will weigh in each Tuesday although I think I will keep the numbers to myself this time around.  I might change my mind about that though, too.  I guess I am wishy washy tonight!  Speaking of Tuesday weigh-ins, anybody else watching Biggest Loser season 13???  I haven't had a chance to watch last nights premiere, but I am excited and will probably get a chance tomorrow.

One of these days I can be as buff as my son and do chin ups.
So that is what I have been up to for the last week or two, along with working lots of early mornings which I am not used to.  In my next post I will make a list of what I am planning AFTER I get my 5K PR in March, including my race wish list for 2012.

Oh yeah- and we bought a new car last week- 2011 Chev Traverse.  Love it!!
Anybody else try the P90X series before?  Any tips or hints?  I am really enjoying Tony Horton, he is a nut. 
What races are on your 2012 wish list? 
What do you think of my new car? 
Did you make any New Year's resolutions?
Are you going to watch Biggest Loser this season? 

01 January 2012

How I got to 1,001 Miles

My daily mile stats for the year!
Yesterday I completed one of my goals for 2011 which was to run 1,000+++ miles with Tall Mom Club.  I ended my year at 1,001 miles- most of which were training miles, some were just for fun, and quite a few were ran during some awesome RACES!!!  Here is a list of my races from 2011, in the order I ran them (click on them for a recap):

3/12/11- St Patty Day 5K- *5k PR, pouring rain, 6 weeks into my marathon training!

6/5/11- NODM Marathon (long version HERE )*Proud, determined, too warm, beautiful race!

6/26/11- Seattle RnR Half Marathon*Last minute, FUN race, perfect weather, BRF Cynthia!

7/4/11- JBLM Down and Dirty 8K Mud Run *Family and friends, great obstacles, loving the mud!

7/22-23rd- Ragnar Relay:  Here, Here, and Here*Epic, Exhausting, Laughing Running Adventure!

9/18/11- You Go Girl Half Marathon*Finished under 2 hours, Rained, Ran with Alyssa, fun outfit!

9/25/11- Black Diamond Half Marathon *Competitive, Triathlon events, last mile is a trail

10/1/11- North County Wine Run Half Marathon*Qualified for Half Fanatic, hubby's first half, joy

10/16/11- Race for a Soldier Half Marathon*last minute, hilly, fantastic volunteers, wonderful cause

12/4/11- Las Vegas RnR Half Marathon*Freezing cold, at night, insanity, amazing sights and sounds

12/17/11- Santa Runs Tacoma 5K*Candy Cane, running with some fun bloggers, well organized

I love having a race or two on my calendar- it gives me focus and purpose.  The minute I don't have a training plan to follow my running goes straight down the toilet.  Thank goodness for the challenge to run 1,000 miles so that I kept putting some miles down while I tried to figure out what I wanted to do next!  Which, by the way, I have finally figured out.  But I will save that for next time!  Hope you all had a fun and safe New Year's weekend- I am ready to see what 2012 brings, aren't you??