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Posts Tagged ‘Training’

Monday: Rest Day

Tuesday: CG Workout

Warm-Up: Annie 50-40-30-20-10 double unders and ab mat Sit-ups. 

I busted out my new speed rope for the first time and found that I’m extremely rusty with double unders.  I’ve been forced to stick with singles recently due to my wrist, after finishing 50 double unders painfully slow (I couldn’t string them together due to the brace on my wrist) I ditched the brace and was able to rattle off a few consecutive DUs.  My original goal was to complete the workout without doing any singles, but I abandoned that during the round of 30 as it was taking far too long.

Total Annie time: just under 16 minutes.

Workout: 3 Rounds

15 Deadlifts

15 Handstand Push-ups

15 Toes to Bar

I did the deadlifts at 125 (which I’m pretty sure is the heaviest I’ve ever done!! I typically put on 115).  It’s also the first time I’ve ever used 45 pound plates!  Completing 45 at this weight was a challenge but I was determined to get through the reps.

A handstand hurt too much so I tried pike push-ups but I didn’t trust my balance on my fist, so I dropped down and did some push-ups on my toes before retreating to my knees. 

Wednesday: 4 mile run.  Originally my plan was for 5 miles, but it was so windy (gusts up to 30 mph) I decided to cut the run a little short.  At times I felt as though I was running in place and others I felt as though someone was pushing me from behind.  My legs were cooked after the run so I spent the evening form rolling and tiger tailing. 

Thursday: Crossfit

Warm Up: 3 Rounds

8 Handstand Push Ups (I did pike push-ups)

20 Hollow Rocks

8 Ring Dips

Strength: 1 rep Push Press Max

Metcon: 14min AMARP

30 Double Unders

200 foot Famers Carry (20 10ft laps, so we had to keep turning around)

10 Shoot throughs with push-up and dip

This workout was much more difficult than it looked.  I made it through everything once and the double unders and push-up/dips two full times.  On the second set of farmers carries I decided to up the ante and carry 2 24kg kettlebells vs the 2 16kg kettlebells I carried the first round.  With the 24kgs I had to stop and adjust my grip about every 20 feet so it was slow going.  I made it about 160 feet before time ran out. 

1 Mile Recovery Run

Friday: Crossfit

Hero WOD: Lumberjack 20

20 Deadlifts (165 was the suggested RX, I did 135)

400m Run

20 Kettlebell Swings (24kg was RX, I tried this weight and couldn’t do it, I worked my way down until I got comfortable with the 18kg)

400m Run

20 Overhead Squats (holding the bar overhead bothered my wrist so I did 30 squats with a weighted plate)

400m Run

20 Burpees

400m Run

20 Chest to Bar Pull-ups (I did 20 pushups and 20 dips)

400m Run

20 Box Jumps

400m Run

20 Dumbbell Squat Cleans (I did one handed squat cleans with a kettlebell, I was running short on time so I just grabbed the closest kettlebell, not sure of the weight).

There was a 30 minute cut off for this workout, I finished in 29:57.  The only reason I managed to finish is because on the last 400m run there was a guy right behind me who I was determined not to let pass me.  He didn’t!  But then again he had no idea we were “racing”.  Regardless, I finished the last 400m as a sprint leaving me a little less than 2 minutes to catch my breath and complete 20 cleans. 

Saturday: My plan was to get up early and run, but when I got up early it was 25 degrees and windy.  Instead of running I headed to open gym and completed the following workout I found on crossfit.com:

Row 1000m

20 GHB Sit-ups

Row 750m

40 Toes to Bar

Row 500m

60 Sit-ups

I was tired and sore from the previous two days workouts, the row felt terrible and very forced.  Which it was because I had no desire to row, I kept trying to talk myself to downgrade the distances (750, 500, 250).  I managed to stick it out, and really pushed myself so I could get the rowing done faster and off the erg.

Instead of the toes to bar I ended up doing 20 lemon squeezers and 20 hollow rocks.  I have yet to get toes to bar so I figured I’d get a better workout substituting the movement.

Sunday: Rest Day!

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If you couldn’t guess by the title of this post: I signed up for the Crossfit Open.  I figured it would be a great way to meet new people at my gym, it was a great way to push myself out of my comfort zone and it made sense financially (I get 5 extra classes for $20!). 

I’ve only been going to Crossfit regularly for 3 months, I’m only just attempting to get over my fear of lifting weight over my head.  I think I’ve done a decent job at taking my time to learn the fundamentals of each lift and practicing my form before adding on weight.  At this point, 55 pounds is my sweet spot, I’m slowly getting more confident to add more weight, I need to continuously remind myself not to get overly competitive and do more than I can handle. 

So much easier to write than adhere too… 

First task, creating an Athlete Profile.  Easy peasy…until you realize you’re MUCH more comfortable displaying your weight compared to your max lifts and benchmark times (if you even have any…)

I'm totally hustling this competition and letting everyone think I'm weaker than I am...

I’m totally hustling this competition and letting everyone think I’m weaker than I really am…

Luckily the Athlete Info section was pre-populated so you just had to choose the answers that best fit. 

Of course these options do leave some wiggle room for interpretation; for example “I eat whatever is convenient”  one may consider Cadbury Mini Eggs as convenient if  there is a CVS 4 block from their condo…and obviously if it’s convenient it doesn’t count as a cheat meal.  Another person might consider their poorly, seldom written blog as tracking their workouts.

Of course these options do leave some wiggle room for interpretation; for example “I eat whatever is convenient” one may consider Cadbury Mini Eggs as convenient if there is a CVS 4 block from their condo…and obviously if it’s convenient it doesn’t count as a cheat meal. Another person might consider their poorly, seldom written blog as tracking their workouts.

Next Task, complete the workouts!

I completed the first WOD 13.1 on Saturday. 

Workout 13.1

17 minute AMRAP of:
40 Burpees 
30 Snatch, 75 / 45 lbs 
30 Burpees
30 Snatch, 135 / 75 lbs 
20 Burpees
30 Snatch, 165 / 100 lbs 
10 burpees
Max rep Snatch, 210 / 120 lbs

I was really nervous for the workout and kept questioning why I signed up for something completely out of my league (and something that would undoubtedly contain burpees). 

I’ve been working on snatches a lot the last couple of weeks, I had worked up from not being able to do the movement to snatching 70 pounds over that time.  I didn’t know if would be able to snatch 75 pounds, 30 times, after completing the previous part of the workout, but I knew it wouldn’t kill me to push myself and try. 

I got put in the last heat, which I dreaded, I would have preferred to get the workout over with rather than watching my teammates look exhausted after they finished. 

Surprisingly the opposite happened, I got extremely motivated.  Everyone was working so hard, yes they were exhausted but they were also extremely proud.  So many people hit PR’s, the girl I was judging in the first heat was able to snatch 75 pounds for the first time ever, which she then repeated 4 more times!

I was incredible inspired and all of a sudden excited for my turn.  My goal was to get through the first set of burpees and 45 pound snatches and the second set of burpees as quickly and efficiently as possible so I’d have ample time to attempt the 75 pound snatch. 

My arms were toast by the time I finished the first set of burpees (I’ve been doing a lot more upper body lately and my arms are slowly adjusting  and recovering from all their newfound attention).  I honestly don’t remember much about the 45 pound snatches, I remember being tired but telling myself to suck it up so I could get to the 75 pound attempts.  30 burpees later it was time…

I wasn’t able to snatch 75 pounds, I can honestly say I tried my hardest to get the weight but I just couldn’t do it.  The coach/judge I was working with was amazing, she kept on offering tips, correcting my form (I was ready to pretty much do just about anything to get that weight over my head), reminding me to take a step back and cheering me on.

There were so many times I wanted to quit or stop and take a break, starting from the moment I walked in the door.  I didn’t do anything unbroken, I broke the exercises up into increments of 5 or 10, on my last set of 30 burpees I really pushed myself, I wanted to get to that 75 pound snatch.  Everytime I wanted to stop I made myself do two more burpees before I took a break to shake out my arms or legs. 

Despite not being able to snatch 75 pounds, I felt really strong and proud after finishing this workout.  I challenged myself and at this point I don’t believe there is anything I could have done differently to change the outcome. 

I signed up for the Open because I wanted to challenge myself, and I’m right on track after workout 13.1.

Are you competing in the Crossfit Open?  What’s the most challenging workout you’ve done recently?

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2 months into the year seems to be a good time to take a pulse on my 2013 goals for this year. 

Goal #1: 1 Unassisted Pull-up.  I clearly haven’t achieved this yet, you’d have heard about it 1000 times by now, but I have been practicing both during class and at open gym.

Goal #2: 1 Unassisted Handstand Push-up. No real progress here, though while I was dealing with rib I did a bunch of pike push-ups off my coffee table (for some reason that didn’t bother my rib).

Goal #3: 1:45 Half Marathon.  Training for this begins this weekend.  I’ll put it out there now that I’m not prepared.  So there’s that. 

Goal #4: Increase Savings by $5000.  Saving has been (extremely) slow but steady, but I’m no longer dipping into my savings every month so there’s so progress.  As of right now my tax return is designated for my savings account so that will be a big help.

Goal #5: Stop Gossiping and Complaining.  I’ve stopped myself from gossiping or complaining a couple times but other times I don’t realize I’m doing it until it’s too late.  Or I realize I’m about to do it and don’t care to stop myself. 

Goal #6: Attempt two new meals a month.  I’ve only attempted one new meal thus far, though I’ve had ample opportunity to take the path less traveled, I’ve stuck to the tried and true. 

I have cut out a couple recipes that I’d like to try, but I just haven’t gotten around to it yet. I trouble with this is that I’d most likely have to make a grocery list before I go shopping, that would take a lot of effort.  Right now I basically buy the same things every week so I don’t require a list. 

Fun Sad Fact: I’m super lazy when it comes to the most simple tasks. 

Goal #7: Stop Focusing/Dwelling on things I have no control over.  Some days this is much easier than others, some days all I want to do is complain, dwell and swear about things I can’t control. 

I do however feel as though I’m catching (and trying to stop) myself lingering on things I can’t control more and more.

Goal #8: Swear less. I gave up swearing for lent.  I still swear on occasion, but less so than I did before.  I’ve found that the less I complain and dwell on things the less I swear.  With these three goals I’ve found that I’m more aware of what I’m saying or thinking.  

Funny thing about this goal, anytime I read something that has a swear word I always pause before the word and consider whether or not I should say the word, even if I’m just reading to myself.

Goal #9: Volunteer Once a Month: February’s volunteer event got postponed until March due to the snowstorm a few weeks back.  I did however sign up to be a mentor to a student in the UCONN School of Business, we had our kickoff a few weeks ago. 

One-sixth of the way through the year and I feel as though I have a decent handle on most of my goals.  Having them posted on my fridge where I can see them every day helps, Though as I learned in 2012, some of the most exciting achievements aren’t planned

Fun Fact: The refrigerator door is the door most opened in my condo!

 

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Happy Monday! 

How was your weekend?  Did you watch the Super Bowl?

My weekend was great, for the first time in almost two weeks I hit up the gym on Saturday morning, I focused solely on legs and felt no pain in the rib area!  After running some errands I headed to my parents to hang out with them for the afternoon before catching up with Erin Saturday night.

Sunday morning I cut up veggies for the week and did some cleaning before heading to the local craft store with supplies to make this:

Newest decor!  I had been looking for a place to hang save the dates or cards, I thought this was a little classier than a bullentin board.

Newest decor! I had been looking for a place to hang save the dates or cards, I thought this was a little classier than a bullentin board.

I was pleasantly surprised at how easy this was, I had seen something similar on Etsy and decided it SHOULD be easy enough to make myself.  I didn’t have any instructions to follow so I decided just to wing it.  I purchased a frame, wire and mini clothes pins and 45 minutes later I had the finished project. 

I hit up a couple Super Bowl parties to round out the weekend and decided the power outage at the game was a signal I should head home and get to bed.   

And suddenly the weekend was over almost as quickly as that brief synopsis.

 If you know me in real life or have even read just two blog entries it won’t come as much of a surprise to you that I’m a little high strung and love having a plan.  Even if my plan is to be spontaneous, I’ll still come up with fun ideas of things I could spontaneously do.  I hate not being prepared.  For the longest time my kepta sweatshirt, a bathing suit/towel, change of clothes and a sleeping bag in my care, just in case. 

I feel as though the best way to seize the day/life is to be overly prepared. 

Ironically, this past fall was the first time I followed a concrete training plan.  I had a calendar, which showed each distance I should be running.  For the first couple of months I followed this schedule to a T, but towards the end of the training cycle I missed a lot of runs, mainly due to fatigue and hamstring pain. 

I liked having my training mapped out for me, seeing it written down seemed to hold me accountable for getting in the miles.    It left out the guess work, prevented me from overtraining in the beginning and served as a reminder of my goal towards the end. It allowed me to break the big goal, running 26.2 miles, into smaller easier to achieve smaller goals. I love crossing off the runs once they were complete, I felt accomplished regardless of how much the run sucked.    

Since I haven’t been able to do anything for the last two weeks, I’ve spent a lot of time researching half marathon training plans.  My plan is to focus on strength training/crossfit and speed work, two elements that were abandoned during marathon training.  I started rereading blog posts from last spring when I was training for the Tough Mudder and realized that when I spent time focusing on strength training, running seemed much more effortless.

I felt faster and could run for longer, a first run of the season 3 miler easily turned into a 5 miler.  A planned 5 miler turned into 8. 

Instead of following a training plan exactly, I’m making up my own, taking mileage suggestions from a couple different sources.  I know what I want my schedule to look like, strength/crossfit 2-3 times a week, running 3-4 times a week (switching up between tempo runs, speed work and long runs) and yoga once a week.  I’m going to follow a hybrid 8-12 week plan, the first four weeks will be lighter focusing on building a running base and regaining strength from my time off.  Then I’ll kick it up for the next seven weeks before scaling back for a taper the week before the race.

I realized last week that being injured might have been a small blessing; it’s forcing me to take time off and rest my body before I begin a training plan and it’s made me really excited and hungry to begin this training plan. 

I’ve run only a handful of times since the Philadelphia marathon back in November and each time it felt very slow and forced.  I’ve finally reached the point where I’m looking forward to running, a couple warm days last week revved this feeling up and I could barely sit still.

My plan for this week is to focus on leg workouts and slowly test adding bodyweight or light weight exercises.  I managed two run about a quarter mile home last night with no pain before realizing what a poor idea this was give how slippery the sidewalks were and my choice of footwear, laceless Chuck Taylors.

While my rib area feels about 95%, I know returning to Crossfit this week would not be in my best interests.  Even when I do return I’m planning on scaling back on the amount of weight I’m using.

T minus 3 weeks until training plan kickoff!

Do you follow training plans for races?  Do you make your own plan?

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Hey there!

How’s everyone’s week shaping up?  Any exciting plans for the weekend?

My week has been great!  I’m super excited about all the fun events and parties I have planned over the next month.  Nothing big planned for the weekend, I’m returning to crossfit on Saturday and I’m hoping to finish my Christmas shopping this weekend! 

Thanks for all the well wishes and positive feedback regarding the marathon!  I really appreciate it; the entire experience has been extremely humbling and rewarding. 

That being said, I’m unsure if I’ll run another marathon. 

I would love to run another marathon, but would not like to train for another marathon.  Running a marathon is not difficult; it’s the training that’s extremely demanding. 

Yet rewarding…

I learned a lot about running and myself while training for Philly.  Not only did I run 26.2 miles but I was able to overcome the mental struggles that plagued so many of my runs and races.  I haven’t completely conquered the self-doubt (and never will), but I’m now able to better identify its onset and stop it before it derails my run/day/work presentation.  

This is the first race I had ever followed a professional training plan for.  Before this, my training plan was always simply run; get in miles when you can, do your best.  I’ve never done tempo runs or speed work as part of a training plan (I didn’t for this marathon either), but I would love to try and see what the results would be. 

Come to think of it I’ve actually never done a tempo run and I’m not even 100% sure what they are, but I’m going to look into it and maybe try one. 

When I crossed the finish line my first thought was that I loved running (despite being bored with it just minutes before), I loved the way it allowed me to push myself and how accomplished it made me feel.

And immediately I started thinking of things I would love to improve on, my form, my speed.  I would love to train for a half marathon focusing on my speed and crushing my half marathon PR.  (I’d also like to improve on giving myself a break and enjoying my accomplishments). 

I want 1:50 1:45.

And I fully plan on achieving it in 2013. 

Spring half marathon anyone?!

Marathon training forced me to reestablish my running comfort zone, what was once the edge is now dead center.

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First things first, it hasn’t really sunk in yet, but I’m officially a marathoner.  Still even a week later, it hasn’t fully registered.  

I finished the 19th annual Philadelphia Marathon on November 18th 2012 in 4:49.

Nothing too speedy, but both of my hamstrings are still attached and I can honestly say I enjoyed just about all 26.2 miles of the course. 

The race had a 7am start, meaning an early wake up of 4:30am so we could meet our friends at 5:15 in the lobby for walk the 1 miles to the starting line. 

Waking up in the morning is easier with a little Moose in the background.

As Lisa and I got dressed we had raisin bread smeared with peanut butter and water to hydrate.  I tried hard not to think of the fact that I had to run 26.2 miles.  Just a tab bit overwhelming.  Instead I told myself that in just 8 short hours this would all be over and I’d be a marathoner and focused on my goals for the race:

  1. Enjoy it!
  2. Start off slow and conserve energy
  3. Cross the finish line
  4. Cross the finish line in under 5 hours
  5. Cross the finish line in under 4:45

I also kept reminding myself to run my own race and not worry about how fast other people were running.  If I could do this, I knew I could absolutely achieve goals 1-3.  Goal number 3 could have been achieved without goals 1 and 2, it would be much more difficult and I knew I would be a bitchy mess despite crossing the finish line.

Hydrating and fueling would also be crucial in crossing the finish line so I decided on stopping at each water station and fueling every 5 miles regardless of whether or not I felt as though I it was needed.   

I also promised myself that I wouldn’t think about how far I had left to go.  Can you think of anything more discouraging than “only 25 miles to go”?!

I wrote this little reminder on my hand, just in case I wanted to give up at some point during the 4 plus hours:

It wore off long before the race started, but I knew it was there.

I’m proud to announce that I achieved Goals 1-4 while missing goal 5 by only 4 minutes!  I managed to hydrate and fuel on a consistent basis and saved the countdown for the last few miles.   

Since the mental aspect of running had been so difficult for me, I made every effort possible to remain positive.  Instead of letting my mind wander, I made sure I was present in the run so I could put an quick end to any negative thoughts that entered my mind. 

I tried hard not to focus on time or mile markets and kept telling myself that I felt strong and great.  Luckily it was the truth. 

The first few miles seemed to fly by.  As soon as we crossed the starting line the race broke up quite nicely, there was very little congestion and it was quite easy to establish a pace.  I felt really strong and make a conscious effort to soak in the experience.  I caught the first couple of mile markers and was right on my desired 10 minute mile pace.  I missed the next few and was pleasantly surprised to find myself at mile 6. 

This was the highlight of the race for me, we were cruising down a main street which was lined 3 to 4 people deep with spectators.  Everyone was screaming cheering us on, it was absolutely amazing.  This is the first race that I ran that had a large spectator presence.  I’ve always heard that the crowd can make a difference in a race but never knew how much so until experiencing it myself. 

It was at this point that I realized if you’re going to attend a marathon you should leave sore.  Either because you ran or because you were cheering so loudly that you now have a sore throat, or your hand is sore from doling out high-fives. 

I high-fived everyone who had their hand out, you wouldn’t believe how much energy you get from a high-five as a runner.  Even at the end of the race, when I was dragging, if I saw someone with their hand out I would speed up to give them a high-five.

Seriously, it’s amazing.  I still get a little emotional just thinking about it. 

I just reread that last portion and yes it sounds crazy, but it’s the truth so it’s staying.  And I promise I’m talking about actual high-fives and not getting high off crack.

The crowd absolutely makes the race. 

I took a bathroom break around mile 9, my legs were starting to get tight so I used the couple minute wait to stretch out.  It’s amazing what a little downward dog can do!   When I hit the road again I felt as though I was running on brand new legs.

The half and the full split around mile 13; so if you were running the full you actually had to run by the finish line, so cruel.  

I turned into the second half of the marathon completely surprised by how quick the first half felt, despite taking over 2 hours. 

Right after the split I saw my friend Sarah, who took this fabulous picture, and reminded me to soak it all in and enjoy the experience. 

Excited much?!

The second half of the course was pretty boring, there were few spectators and a long out and back looming.  I distracted myself by watching the runners on the other side, they were speedy and made it look oh so easy!

After a little bit I saw Julie coming down the home stretch (I think her mile 23ish) absolutely crushing the course.  She says she was dying at this point but I think she’s being a little modest; she makes it look so easy. 

Around mile 17/18 my legs started to get really tired and my hamstrings were tightening up.  After seeing a fellow runner on the ground griping at his hamstring I found the first piece of grass and oh so carefully got into the downward dog position. 

I got up and walked for a few to avoid any dizzy spells. 

At one point slightly after this break we crested a small hill and could see all the runners in front of us, it was just a sea of people that seemed to stretch out in front of us.   I knew the turn-around was between mile 19 and 20, but not being able to see it was a little discouraging. 

I trudged on reminding myself that in recaps that I read this was one of the more exciting parts of the course.  For the first time during the race I started calculating out my splits and determined that if I kept up this pace I could easily finish in the 4:30’s. 

I debated whether or not I should push it and reach for 4:30. 

After seeing another runner down, I took another stretching break.  I remember being so grateful that my legs had held up so well, and thought about how lucky I am that I can run.  I got a little choked up.   

Which lead to a little more walking so I could calm myself down. 

I quickly decided that my focus was going to be on crossing the finish line and I wasn’t going to push it to finish within a certain time.  It’s quite possible that I was already pushing my luck asking so much of my hamstrings. 

Mile 20 is often where runners encounter the dreaded wall.  While coming up around miles 18 and 19, I kept looking at the runners on the other side of the road but they all seemed to be doing quite well.

I told myself that this race didn’t have a wall and kept moving. 

Coming into the turn-around was exciting there were people everywhere cheering and handing out food.  I grabbed and orange and a small piece of a brownie, which tasted so amazing.  I didn’t realize how hungry I was. 

One group had set up a table and was handing out small cups of beer.  While the extra calories were extremely tempting  (Beer > Gu) with only 6 miles to go I didn’t want to risk my chances of finishing. 

Only 6 miles to go!

At this point I allowed myself to start counting down the miles. 

I LOVED seeing the signs that said “Marathon Inbound”! 

These miles seemed to go on forever, there were a few downward dogs involved, hoping that I could somehow get the feeling of new legs once again and float along to the finish line. 

This of course never happened, but it didn’t stop me from repeatedly trying.

Though I never hit the infamous wall, I did start taking more and more walking breaks.  I knew I was going to cross the finish line, I just wanted it to be now.  I was so bored of running.

I tried turning on my ipod, but I couldn’t find a song I really wanted to run to, there were a bunch I wouldn’t have minded dancing too, I just didn’t want to run any longer.  I didn’t realize how exhausted I was until I closed my eyes to take a deep breath and being startled by the fact that “I could take a nap right now”.

Around mile 22/23 the 4:30 pace group passed me, this gave me a little burst as I tried to keep up with them while trying to calculate how it was possible that I could still run a 4:30. 

It wasn’t.

Regardless, it was impossible for me to keep the pace they were running, my legs couldn’t move that fast. 

I watched the pace group fade off into the distance and focused on keeping my mood positive.

I got myself choked up again as I kept telling myself that I was going to be a marathoner.  I actually got choked up a couple of times in the last few miles of the race, each time having to stop and walk to calm myself down before it turned into an all-out waterworks show. 

Since this was an out and back you could see the mile markers on both sides (they were staggered), while everyone I talked to hated this, I loved it as it seemed to break up the run a little bit more.

Plus it offer reassurance that I was in fact making forward progress.

I kept telling myself to look strong for the runners on the other side of the road. 

Around mile 24/25 I found Cara running up the other side of the road, I flagged her down and she ran with me for a little bit.  This was Cara’s 5th marathon this year, unfortunately the race wasn’t going quite the way she hoped so she dropped down to the half and instead of celebrating she headed up to the second half of the course and ran with friends between miles 22 and 25. 

She distracted me by having me pose for pictures:

I need to work on running with my mouth close and my heel strike.

Despite what it looks like I’m actually not skipping, due to the tight hamstrings my stride was really short.  Also I need to work on that heel strike. 

In total she ended up running over 27 miles! 

She was an absolute rock star. 

When we separated, I had less than a mile to go. (I wasn’t thinking clearly as it took me a little bit to realize that it was less than a mile, I kept going back and forth as to whether or not I had to run to mile 27 before hitting the .2)

I remember hitting the 26 mile marker and then seeing the finish line up ahead of me (which confirm that I didn’t have another mile plus to go) at that point I let myself get excited. 

It was happening. 

I picked it up as much as I could reminding myself to soak it all in.  I remember seeing the announcer as I came into view, hoping that he’d be able to read my name on the bid and announce it.  Hearing him say my name out loud as I crossed the finish line would obviously mean that it happened. 

And then I heard my name. 

I crossed feeling strong, making sure I hit the sensors so my time was recorded.

And it was over.

After 18 weeks of training I had achieved my goal. 

Here’s to hoping that it doesn’t take 18 weeks for it to fully sink in.

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Up until 2 weeks ago all I could think about was the marathon, and now to be honest, I could care less.  I used to wake up in the middle of the night thinking of something that I needed to pack, or a race detail that I wanted to look up. 

Or in a panic that I missed the race, or showed up at the wrong race. 

I’m certainly not complaining about sleeping through the night, but I wish I felt a little excitement.

While the break from the over analyzing everything has been much welcomed, there is the reality that, I’m not excited for this marathon.

I’m not nervous either.

I’m indifferent. 

I’ve been trying to psyche myself up for it, but I can’t. 

I’ve been reading other bloggers marathon re-caps, and while they pump me up for a few minutes the desired effect is short-lived. 

All the while I’ve remained positive and haven’t stressed out (I’m considering it a victory of sorts that I’m not stressing about not being stressed out). 

This could benefit me.  Maybe the lack of excitement will help me stay calm at the start and I won’t go out to fast.  There’s the possibility it’ll keep me from getting ultra-competitive with myself.  Perhaps it’ll keep me from over analyzing ever small detail, which will keep me relaxed and less stressed. 

Wouldn’t it be cool if this cool as a cucumber attitude was matched with 8 9 minute miles across the board?!

But…of course there is a but.

My marathon training hasn’t gone exactly as planned the last month. 

In an effort to stick with the positive attitude let’s just say I’m really good at tapering. 

I ran a whopping 7 miles this week.   My left hamstring isn’t in good shape, it sore.  Some days it feels fine and doesn’t bother me, other days I’ll get shooting pains while sitting still or lying in bed. 

I wouldn’t describe it as tight, but nagging.  It’s tolerable but does a number of my mental state. 

Monday morning I met Ali for a 4 mile run.  We chatted and the miles flew by, my legs still felt like lead, but it didn’t feel as though I had to put in too much effort to propel myself forward. 

Tuesday morning I set off for 6 miles, but didn’t make it too far before my hamstring acted up.  I headed home and spent the time reserved for running devoted to the foam roller instead.

While at work Tuesday afternoon I got a horrible cramp in the right calf that didn’t go away until Thursday/Friday.

Awesome.

Saturday morning I took off for the recommended 8 mile run, I got a mile and a half in before turning around due to hamstring pain.  I debated finishing the run just to prove I can do it, but in the end decided it wasn’t worth it. 

I didn’t want to be out there running.  I’m tired of pushing myself to run.

So I turned around and went home. 

I was stressing myself out as to whether or not I’d be able to run the marathon.   The run was turning ugly fast. 

I distracted myself from dealing with this reality all weekend.  After the failed run on Saturday I got ready, threw clothes in a bag and high tailed it up to Maine for a friend’s wedding.  I spent the afternoon and evening dancing and ignoring the pain in my hamstring.  Sunday I went to brunch, then went and met a couple of rescue dogs before heading home. 

Last night I finally admitted to myself that 26.2 miles might not happen this week.  I’m still preparing this week as though I will run the marathon.

And I absolutely will run this weekend, it just might be the 13.1 distance instead. 

I ran 4 miles yesterday morning, it was a good run, after 10 minutes my leg loosened up.  I’m hoping for the same result on Sunday. 

My training schedule calls for a 2 and 3 mile run, I’d like to keep to that schedule but we’ll see.  I’m going to add a couple of yoga classes as well as lots of foam rolling and icing. 

That’s where I stand 5 days before my first attempt at running a marathon. 

Not exactly where I wanted to be, but standing none the less.

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