Training Update: Come-back

Sometimes we get so hyper-focused on the details that we forget to appreciate the small things in life. After all, the “small things” are really the biggest things in life. Being able to love, being happy, health, mobility… being ABLE TO RUN.

It’s easy to get worked up in the details of “how far” or “how fast.”

Being able.

That’s important.

I’m happy to be able to run.

But that doesn’t mean I don’t have goals. I also know that I CAN DO HARD THINGS. Lifelong Endurance is helping me not only be ABLE but to be able to REACH MY GOALS. Thank you.

Let’s see how my week went!

Monday

4 miles easy

This felt nice! The weather was lovely and I felt good overall. I’m still being consistent and persistent with warming up and stretching. It’s becoming a part of the routine – just like picking out my socks and putting on my headphones.

Tuesday

2 miles easy, 12 x 1:00 hard + 1:00 easy, 2 miles easy + Strength

I had a great run! It felt good to work on some speed (without pushing it) and I just felt overall STRONG. I ran early – in that perfect early morning chilly weather. I also got my strength in – all before 7:30 am! Yes!

Wednesday

4 miles easy

This one just felt “pretty good.” Legs were a little heavy and a bit fatigued. I ran in the evening when I generally have less energy, and these days is much hotter. Better runs will be had!

Thursday

“Light Workout” – 5 miles – 3 easy, 2 @ 8:50-8:25

THIS ONE FELT GREAT! I’m back in the Saucony Kinvara, which I ran in for the last two miles (they feel like air compared to my heavy yet reliable Asics Nimbus) and I was flying. I felt light and I got in a nice groove for the first time in quite a while! Yes yes yes!

Friday

Strength

Did an early morning functional strength routine at home. It was good. Strength is boring for me. Hard. And boring. So I no comment other than “I did it!” 🙂

Saturday

10 miles! 7 easy, 3 tempo

It felt pretty good! I did it! I was kind of tired and wondering when it’d be over. But I wasn’t in pain and I ran 10 miles so I am happy! I did stretch, warm up, and cool down. I seem to oddly be the exception as the person who does these things in my running group. But it’s a necessity now so. There!

I did note that right when I finished the 10 miler, I felt slightly nauseated for a split second. Like, I held my stomach with “uh-oh face. Just for a moment. May be because of the heat. I ate, went home and walked my dog for about 20 minutes – at this time it was in the 80’s – and felt a little sick again. Nothing some food, electrolytes, and a little nap couldn’t cure, though!

Sunday

REST!

Stay tuned! Coming soon: full warm up/cool down routine AND functional strength workout by the amazing coaches at Lifelong Endurance!

How do you manage running in the heat? Do you alter paces and/or distances accordingly?

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Training Update: Overcoming Obstacles

“Things don’t always go as planned.”

Is anything more true?

My running has been going really well, adhering to the “plan,” never missing a run or workout. Until RnR NOLA when I fell apart. Literally. Ok not literally, but not figuratively. My body said “naw…”

It was time for a break.

Fortunately, my “issue” is something very common that many runners face – a piriformis/glute issue that just needed some TLC and now requests that I ACTUALLY warm up and stretch. I guess I can give it that.

Also, I have amazing coaching on my side, Lifelong Endurance, helping me play it smart and get back into the swing of things without further breaking myself.

SO. For the past few weeks, I’ve been running very minimally – maybe 10 miles a week (prior to that, I took a few weeks off completely). Now I have regular runs and am on my “comeback.”

I have been DILIGENT about stretching, warming up (see “dynamic warm up” below), and doing my quadruped series as prescribed by Coach. I know I’m getting stronger with the quad. series (which only takes about a total of maybe 10 minutes) because I used to barely be able to get through 1 set of 20 of each movement, now I’m up to 3 x 20 and it’s a breeze.

This is the dynamic warm up Coach gave me which I have made PART of my run and a 100% complete necessity. There is no “I don’t have time.” I either have time for a warm up, or I don’t have time for a run –

  • 15 walking lunges
  • 15 walking lunges with twist
  • 20 high knees
  • 20 butt kickers
  • Leg swings

I also add little skips and a figure 4 stretch then I’m off! Warming up truly annoyed me at first, but now I don’t mind it so much as it’s become (almost) routine.

So, let’s see how this week went!

Monday

4 miles easy (4.0 miles/38:21/9:34 min/mile)

This one didn’t feel great. I’m still getting back “into it” and I just felt slow and heavy.

Tuesday

2 miles easy/8 x :40 hard/1:20 easy, 2 miles easy (6.3 miles/57:51/9:11 min/mile)

This was was a 4 out of 10. It didn’t feel GREAT but wasn’t terrible. I was happy I did it but am still not feeling quite “normal.” This was my first structured run in a while, which was nice!

Wednesday

4 miles easy (4.05 miles/39:30/9:45 min/mile)

This one was a 5 out of 10. It was an early morning run and felt just “pretty good.” The weather was PERFECT.

Thursday

“Light workout” – 5 miles – 3 easy, 2 @ 8:50-8:25 (5 miles/45:23/9:03 min/mile)

This “FELT SO GOOD” in big, bold, capital letters according to my journal. This one was nice. I finally felt light on my feet and crushed those last few miles like my “normal” self! Very very happy with today’s run. I was worried when I saw those paces but Coach just knows.

Friday

STERNGTH

I went to the gym and did my “functional strength” workout. I usually just do this at home since I don’t need any equipment but today I practiced suqatting with the bar! And learned that the gym isn’t so scary after all! Hooray for my first actual “gym workout” (that wasn’t just me gravitating towards the cardio machines)!

Saturday

Long Run – 10 miles – 7 miles easy, 3 tempo – (10.1 miles/1:35:41/9:29 min/mile)

I DID IT!!! I FREAKING DID IT. I was worried about this one. How would my glute/legs hold up? Would it start hurting again? Would I have to break away from the group? This would be my longest run before the RnR NOLA Half Marathon that was 100% pain and misery. NOPE! I ran with my group and just listened to my body. It was pulling back a bit but I was able to run the whole 10 miles feeling pretty good!!! I was (am) beyond happy about this one.

Sunday

OFF!

There you have it! I’m excited to get back into it and for this week!

Do you warm up? Stretch? What else do you do for recovery?

30 Minute PR: Just the Beginning

I wanted to share something you may have already read if you follow my Instagram.

I think it’s so important to love every version of yourself.

BUT

How BADASS does it feel to realize how much you’ve improved?!

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👈 On the left: it’s 2016, I am running my first ever run longer than 4-6ish miles. I just randomly signed up for a local half marathon, the Big D Half Marathon. No training, newbie, and I thought “HOW do people do this?!?” It was hard. But I proved something to myself: I CAN. {Finished in 2:11/10:00 min/mile}
👉 On the right: it’s 2017, I’ve been working with the AMAZING Lifelong Endurance (game changer!), working hard, still a newbie 😜 and having fun running the BCS Half Marathon in College Station. I felt unstoppable. {Finished in 1:42/7:46 min/mile}
I love this picture because both of these pictures were taken at the finish line. 🏁 Not only can I see that I have become physically stronger, but I have grown mentally strong in ways I did not imagine possible.
👊 and this is just the beginning. Thank you to Lifelong Endurance for a coaching me through (basically a 30 min PR in a year?!) and thank you Bibrave and ALL OF YOU!!!

Let’s do this thing!!! 💪💪

Below are some race photots to remind me that I am strong during this time of such low mileage! I am healing and trying to get stronger to prevent this piriformis issue to become just that – an “issue.” I hope to get back to the grind soon!

In the meantime, I am running a few days a week, cycling, and doing some functional strength movements.

Happy Friday!

How do you stay motivated when you feel like you’re not improving?

What “fun” strength workouts do  you like/recommend?

Race Recap: Statesman Capitol 10K

Disclaimer: I received free entry to the Statesman Capitol 10K race as part of being a BibRave Pro. Learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (ambassador), and check outBibRave.com to review find and write race reviews!

Austin, Texas! I love the place. I live in Dallas, about 3 hours away.

A friend of mine told me I had to do this race in Austin. That it was worth the weekend trip. She was right!

As you know, I am still on the mend form a piriformis/glute issue but was confident that I could run a 10K for fun (not pushing the pace). So, I headed down to Austin on Saturday to hit the expo before race day, Sunday.

After the car ride I was worried. The only other thing that makes “it” hurt (I’ll be referring to my pain as “it”) is sitting for long period of time (thank goodness for my standing desk at work!). So, after the car ride I was just worried that it would be a repeat of RnR NOLA and every step would hurt.

But it didn’t!

I am so thankful for Lifelong Endurance for coaching me through this speed bump the smart way. I told Coach how I felt after the car ride and he told me some stretches to do and told me to take a hot bath. I woke up in the morning feeling like I would be OK. And at this point that was huge. It’s a bummer to travel somewhere and not even enjoy the run!

So, it was race morning! I love race morning. An early alarm, extra coffee, fine-tuning my race outfit. I wasn’t sure what to wear with the weather – 40 degrees. I have that delimma of “I know I’ll warm up” but also know “I’ll be miserably cold for a solid hour before that happens.” I’ve tried actually not getting to the race TOO early (I used to be about an hour early, now I aim for about 20 minutes) to help remedy this.

I still wore my “throw away” jacket that I got for like $3 at Good Will but have yet to actually toss during a race because it’s fuzzy and warm and, well, I like it! (Thrifted clothing always ends up being my favorite).

Anyway, I was “good” and did some lunges, high knees, butt kickers, and some stretches before the race start! I’m usually that person that just stands awkwardly until the start. I have been religious about warm ups lately because Coach actually *LOADS* this into my workout. So, I read it and have to check it off my list. Plus, how could I say “it hurt” then answer “no…” when I’m asked if I warmed up and stretched?

So the run starts and I don’t push it. I start at about a 10 minute mile and then realize “I feel OK!” My goal was just to run and enjoy it. Not be in pain. Not push myself. And I did just that. It is frustrating that “it” still hurts just a tad because I FELT GREAT. I WANTED to go fast. I COULD have gone fast. But I knew I’d hurt myself even more. I’m on the “up and up” and need to continue to go “up.”

I decided to not even look at my watch and just go. Just look at everything and bounce along. Have fun! And I am so thankful for this run. It DID feel great and I DID have fun. I really soaked it all in and looked at every little thing and was happy and free.

I finished in under an hour (56:37) although I could have finished in any amount of time and been happy to run without pain and run happy! Austin is a beautiful, unique city and I truly had fun exploring and running. It was just what I needed!

For a full review on the race itself – organization, expo details, swag, etc – check out my Race Review on BibRave.com here: https://www.bibrave.com/races/statesman-cap10k/9614#.Wst-q4gbNaQ

For my Athlinks results go here: https://www.athlinks.com/athletes/319145186

Fun Fact:
The Cap10K mascot, Dash the Dillo, has been the race mascot since he was created by Pulitzer prize-winning editorial cartoonist Ben Sargent in 1978. The dillo has changed several times over the years.