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Posts Tagged ‘Weekend’

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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I had an incredible weekend. 

Friday night, for the first time in two months, I went out after work.  I met Jen and Julie at the Harpoon brewery for a tasting to benefit YES.  It felt great to spend the evening talking and drinking with others instead of hanging out on my couch preparing for a long run in the morning. 

I only needed to log 12 miles this weekend, which didn’t seem like much compared to the miles completed the previous Saturday mornings.  I had more confidence in my ability to run 12 miles after a couple of drinks than I did in my tired legs. 

So I let loose for a little bit.  Not too long though I was still in bed by 10:30! 

Saturday morning I got up ran some errands and attended a painful but much-needed yoga class.

Saturday night was our annual Friends Thanksgiving (more details to follow tomorrow), good conversation, great food, amazing friends and tons of laughs. 

Sunday morning I woke up with sore legs, I had no desire to run.  I made myself breakfast and tea and parked myself on the couch watching the news Friends.  I started scrolling through Facebook and caught word of a couple of friends running locally to benefit those affected by hurricane Sandy.

I felt guilty. 

As of right now, the marathon I’m training for is still on.  And yet I wasn’t training for it. I had no reason to be sitting on my couch, when I could be running. 

I made a deal with myself, I wasn’t going to push myself to log the 12 suggested miles, but I needed to run 6.  And I had to enjoy it.  This run wasn’t going to be about logging miles this run was going to be about enjoying the miles. 

I had no reason not to do so.

I laced up my sneakers, grabbed my iphone (which never comes on runs) and headed out. 

I did my typical favorite run, I head down to the Charles River and run the loop between the Museum of Science and the Mass Ave Bridge. 

Door to door this loop is 5.8 miles.  Sometimes I call it 5, others I call it 6.  I figure in the grand scheme of things the miles will all even out. 

Regardless of the time of day, or year for that matter, you’ll always run runners along the Charles.  During the spring, summer and fall the river is packed with runners after work. 

I love being out there, being a part of the running community.  I love feeling of cruising by, moving faster than the parking lot that is Storrow Drive at rush hour.  I absolutely love the first few days that hint of spring the paths along the river are filled with locals out for their first run of the season.   

You just know there are a lot of empty treadmills throughout the city. 

I’ve ended a few of my longer runs on this loop, I like the familiarity of it.  I know what it feels like to complete this route, I know what to expect.  This route provides a sense of comfort when running 18 or 20 miles.   

Sunday morning I finally did what I’ve wanted to do for so long, take pictures of the beautiful views from the loop. 

The run was slow, but amazing.  I soaked in the views, I snapped over 30 pictures with my iphone, I rocked out to the Ja Rule station on Pandora. 

I won’t burden you with 30 pictures but I’ll share some of my favorites:

Dock near Community Sailing. While running at night it’s typical to see people hanging out on this dock watching the sunset. The Mass Ave Bridge is off in the background.

Perfect tree for a beginner tree climber!

Mass Ave Bridge from the Boston/Storrow side of the river

View of downtown Boston from the Mass Ave bridge.

Running under the Zakim Bridge by way of the new footbridge connecting Charlestown to Cambridge.

View of the Zakim Bridge and Boston Garden from Paul Revere Park in Charlestown

 Half way through the run/photo shoot I came across a couple of girls setting up a water station.  I stopped to talk to them.  One of their friends was supposed to run the NYCM, instead he had gathered some friends and they were running to raise money for the Red Cross, the girls weren’t runners so they set up a water/fuel station to support and cheer for their friends.

I snapped a picture of them but it didn’t come out.  Well it did, but they’re positioned behind my finger. 

The loop took me an hour and twenty minutes, by far the slowest I’ve ever run it. 

More often than not I get sucked into crossing things off my to-do list that I forget to look around and enjoy the experience.  I get competitive with myself, seeing how much I can accomplish in a day, I lose track that the purpose of a day isn’t to see who can get the most done.

I’ve spent the last 16 weeks training for a (hopefully) sub 5 hour race.  While the marathon will be an experience in and of itself, the training runs shouldn’t be discarded along with my completed to-do list. 

They are far superior than making my bed or lunch for the next day.

I’ve never run a race with the intension of finishing first.  I run for the experience, the pride of finishing, and the challenge of pushing myself.  Sometimes, more and more often lately, I get caught up thinking how cool it will be to be able to consider myself a Marathoner.

That’s not the purpose of the why I’ve been running my butt off for the past 16 weeks. 

Running a marathon should be a lot like going to college, the main goal is to finish/graduate, but the best parts often happen inbetween when you sign up and when you finish. 

This run reminded me that when you lace up your sneakers there are other exciting experiences to savor besides crossing the finish line.

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