Monday, September 27, 2010

A productive day

Ever have one of those productive days where you get every thing on your "To Do" list completed? Well that was my day yesterday!

Sunday, I woke up really early and met Brian at church. For the past month Brian and I have been making the rounds on all the local catholic churches. It's not like we are picky we just wanted to find a place that we both liked. Picking a church has been such a hassle and more stress than it should be. The catholic church is pretty strict with its regulations - ceremony at a certain time, no aisle runner, have to be out of the church by a certain time - the list goes on. You would think the church would make it easier for people to get married there! We are both catholic although not super involved but we have decided on a church for our wedding so we thought we should start making semi-regular visits and get to know the priest that would be marrying us.

After that I went home and decided to attempt a run. My mom dropped me off 3 miles out and I ran back home. I felt really good, kept the pace easy and enjoyed the sunshine. My knee hurt on and off during the run but nothing like I felt last week. It wasn't sore or achy afterward which made me think that the pain was all in my head.

Later that afternoon while watching football I made a homemade birthday cake for Brian! His actual birthday is not until next Saturday but he wont be here over the weekend. Some of you may remember last year when I attempted to make a homemade red velvet cake and it didn't come out exactly like I wanted. This year I made carrot cake from an old family recipe and it turned out wonderful!!

This morning I got back into my normal routine and went out for a run in the dark! My knee hurt a little but that was nothing compared to my IT band! If it isn't one thing, its another! I am heading to yoga class tonight to hopefully loosen up my muscles!

Have a great Monday!

Friday, September 24, 2010

Lazy Stretcher

There is nothing like a little knee pain to make me bring out my foam roller and stretch like crazy! I always seem to avoid stretching and strengthening when I am feeling good. In the back of my mind I know I should be doing preventative maintenance on my legs but I usually have an excuse - I will be late to work, I am too sweaty from the run, etc etc.

The knee pain, although still lingering, has gotten better. I can walk up and down the stairs without looking like an old person or a cripple. It has been weird "sleeping in" every morning and I know that my cat, who I usually let out at 5am, is really missing my early wake ups as well! Plus the moon has been brilliant this week and although I have been able to catch a glimpse of it while I drive to work, there is nothing like staring at a beautiful moon while you are running. Plus it helps to light the way and its not getting any lighter in the mornings so I need all the help I can get!

My new goal will be to continue to stretch even after I am back to running. We will see how long I can keep that up! A couple more rest days and then I think I will take the legs for a test run.

It's finally FRIDAY!! Have a great weekend!

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Pain in the knee

Last night I headed over to the park after work to meet up with the running group. My friend Rebecca was there so we chatted about weddings (as she is getting married in April) and running during our 2 miles trail warm up.

As we finished the warm up I could feel the pain in my knee starting but I decided to try the workout and see how I felt. Rebecca and I went off with a few others to do 2x15 minutes at tempo pace. I had forgotten my watch at home but it was one of those workouts where it really didn't matter.

The first set was pretty good. The knee pain actually went away as I ran faster! We were running on the same looped path that we had done mile repeats on a few weeks ago. I tried calculated how many laps we would be do for the 15 minutes and that helped me figure how much more time I had since I didn't have a watch.

After a quick rest, we started the second set. I tried to keep up with the girls but I couldn't. As we rounded one curve and started running up the hill my knee pain intensified. I conquered the hill, made it a few more feet and then decided I needed to stop.

The pain is centralized on the inside of my leg/knee - the exact opposite side of the knee where you would normally feel IT band pain. When I run it feels like someone is stabbing me in the knee cap - when you look down at your left knee, it hurts along the right side of the kneecap. I have this feeling that it may be the same thing that I dealt with last summer when I had weak hips and had to stop running. The weird thing is that the pain is in my left knee and last year I dealt with it in my right.

This morning it hurt to walk up and down the stairs. I am going to try my old PT exercises tonight and see how it feels. The pain is so severe and lingers even after I stop running but my knee isn't swollen! How come I always get these random pains?!

Anyone else ever dealt with this? I am hoping it will be a quick fix and I will be back to running soon but who knows.

Monday, September 20, 2010

More running, less eating

In the past week there wasn't much running, but there sure was a lot of eating!

Saturday, Brian's family held an Engagement party for Brian and I and we were spoiled with all of our favorite foods including some delicious cake!

I had a GIANT slice of this red velvet cake and it was delicious! It was so nice to have both of our families together celebrating our engagement! Now it feels even more real that Brian and I are getting married!!

This morning I dragged myself out of bed, bundled up and headed out in the 45F temps for a nice run! It felt great to get my legs moving again after resting last week. I always say this but it was really dark outside! I feel more and more like a night runner because the sun isn't even up when I finish my run. I felt a weird twinge in my left knee as I was finishing up the last mile, not sure why but hopefully it is nothing.

How was your weekend??

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Running Club Party

Thank you to everyone for the kind comments on my race post yesterday. I really appreciated reading each one and they made me feel better. I was actually very surprised with my time for the half and all things considered it is a good time. That is not what I had been dwelling on. It was the fact that I had problems during AND after the race. Scary problems that I really don't have an answer for or know why they happened.

But moving on from that, last night I went to the Tuesday workout for my running club (which was being held at my coach's house). We did 6+ easy miles on the trails and I felt great. Of course my legs were still a little sore and tired from the race but running with the group was exactly what I needed to get myself back into gear.

After the workout, we returned to the house and all stepped into a cold "tub" which was just a little kiddie swimming pool. My legs LOVED this and I felt so much better. Then we all gathered inside to enjoy lots of food and good company! To top it off, they had a huge delicious cake for dessert! I was in heaven!

I am not sure what the next week holds for running, but I am sure I will get out for a few fun runs! The morning temps have been dipping into the low 50s and high 40s so I think it might be time to pull out some of the warmer clothing! I hate to say it but I am going to miss summer!

Happy Wednesday!

Monday, September 13, 2010

Rochester Half Marathon

Finding the words to write this post was difficult. I guess the best place to start is the beginning.

Sunday morning I woke up at 5am to get ready, eat breakfast and head off to the start line. It had been raining on and off all night but thankfully let up as I was getting ready. My parents wished me good luck and sent me off to the race...alone.

After picking up my timing chip, I headed to the start and found some friends that I knew. I was hoping to see Rebecca, a friend from my running group and I actually turned around and she was right there. We walked to the start together and waited for the race to begin.

We did a lot of weaving around people as it was quite congested and after mile 1 we settled into a good pace. It started to lightly rain as we continued on to mile 2 and 3. I felt good as we ran along. After mile three, we made a right turn and went straight up a hill. I worked to stay with Rebecca, my right hip began to ache and once we reached the top of the hill, I hoped my breathing would go back to normal. I worried that I was slowing her down and just wanted to stay with her so I would have a buddy for the race.

Halfway through mile 4 we started a long gradual incline and I just couldn't keep up. The distance between Rebecca and I started to get bigger and I just tried to keep her in sight. I knew this was going to be a long race as I hadn't even reached mile 5.

I pushed on and told myself that once I reached mile 7, I could walk. I felt extremely slow especially as more and more people began to pass me. I just kept telling myself to get to mile 7 and then I could stop.

As we came into the water stop around mile 7, I stepped off the course, ate a gel and drank from my hand held. I knew I was already half way done and saw that my time goal of 8 min/mile was slipping away.

I continued on, having moments when I felt great and then moments when I just wanted to walk. It was a constant mental struggle to keep going. I started walking through the water stops, drinking Gatorade, hoping that it would give me some energy to pick up the pace.

Miles 8 and 9 just slogged together as I tried to keep it together. Runners kept passing me and I felt like I was going so slow, I just couldn't pick up the pace. By the time I reached mile 11, I tried to tell myself that I just had 2 miles left. It didn't seem like a long way to go, but my legs were not happy. My right hip continued to ache and my knees were beginning to hurt. I was hurting in places I had never hurt before plus I was feeling the cramps in my stomach on both sides!

Reaching mile 12 felt good, but I still couldn't see the stadium where the finish line was so I had no real sense of the distance. As I continued on, a spectator said only 0.1 as I must have missed the mile 13 maker. I just kept running, hoping that I would come in at 1:52.

Rounding the turn and coming into the finish line, I heard the announcer saying my name and I didn't want to hear it. I just wanted to sit down and hide. I saw the clock and it said 1:52:XX. A volunteer gave me a medal and took off my chip. I grabbed some water and search to see if Brian had come to the race.

My legs were in a lot of pain and I tried to sit down, but my right hip cramped up so I stood back up. I grabbed a banana, more Gatorade and walked to my car. I drove myself home in a daze of disappointment and amazement that I had just run 13 horrible miles of torture.

Once I reached home, I immediately took off my soaking clothes and showered. Then I made my way to the couch to lay down. My stomach was feeling horrible and continued to get worse. I started to sweat and was extremely hot. I started to gag and then threw up the contents of my stomach.

I called Brian who had been at a bachelor party the night before and so I had told him to not try and make it to the race but was still maybe hoping that he had. He came over and thought I had a fever so he drove me to the immediate care center down the road. We waited only a few short minutes before seeing the doctor where they tested my urine, took my blood sugar, blood pressure, pulse, and temperature. Nothing seemed unusual except my high pulse and the doctor said my urine showed I was decently hydrated for just running a race.

I had begun to feel better but the doctor still gave me anti-nausea medicine and told me he thought I didn't have enough salt/sodium to absorb the water I had drank on Saturday and then during the race.

The rest of the day was a daze as the medicine made me drowsy and I ended up sleeping 12 hours straight. It all seems so far away now and completely fuzzy. The only thing that reminds me that I actually ran the race is my sore quads.

Overall it was a pretty devastating race and I was very upset at having mentally and physically quit on myself only a few miles into the race. The only thing I can assume is that I was not prepared for the race and didn't have enough experience with the longer distances. It is scary about what happened after the race and that I have had similar symptoms although less severe after the Boilermaker 15k this year.

Today (Tuesday) I am doing well. Glad to have the race behind me and looking forward to a break from running for a bit. It just seems like I need to take a step back.

Thanks for reading.

Friday, September 10, 2010


I almost forgot what today was!! In a year from now I will be getting married!!

I will then share an anniversary date with Marlene!! Today she celebrates her 5th wedding anniversary!!

Brian and I are knee deep in wedding planning!! Ok that is a lie - I am knee deep in wedding planning and I just tell Brian when to show up!! More updates to come soon - I promise!!

Getting Ready!

This summer has flown by and race weekend is finally upon us! I am breaking out the running skirt for the half this weekend! My mom happened to pick this one up for me and I used it on my 12 miler and 10 miler, so I decided to go with it for the race!

Now on to the race goals in the style of Marlene!!

A. (I hope I can) sub 1:45:00
B. (I think I can) 1:50:00
C. (I know I can) 2:00:00

Hopefully the weather is decent on Sunday (currently predicting rain)! Good luck to everyone racing this weekend!! Happy Friday!

**For a great giveaway, check out Racing with Babes!

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Three Things Thursday

The pre-race edition!

1. I have been craving spaghetti for the last two weeks!! I can't wait until Saturday night when I can sit down with a big bowl and carbo load!

2. Yesterday may have been my last run before the race. I was feeling super tired last night so I decided to sleep in this morning. If I feel good after work, I may head out for a short 2 miles. Otherwise I am in total rest mode until Sunday which means lots of water and no high heels!

3. Uhh I am going to be running 13 miles on Sunday and the nerves are starting to creep in!!! This will be the first time I have raced a half, and only the second time I have run 13 miles in my life! Stay tuned for tomorrow's post when I share my time goals and race outfit!

Happy Thursday!!

Monday, September 6, 2010

Hiking up a Mountain

Thursday after work, Brian and I got into the car and drove to my aunt and uncle's house. We planned to go hiking with my uncle on Saturday.

Saturday morning we were up at the crack of dawn (5am) and packed up and headed to the mountain. The plan was to hike up the mountain then come back down the trail a little bit and take a side trail and hike a second mountain and then return to the bottom.

Brian all bundled up and ready to start the hike

At the base it was pretty cool and damp. The trail started out fairly easy and only slightly uphill. After about 30 minutes of walking/climbing the trail suddenly got very steep and stayed that way until the top. As we climbed, the landscape began to change. It transformed from a dense forest of hardwoods, to pine and birch trees. The temperature also started to decrease as we increased in elevation!

The start of the hilly climb.

Stopping to take a water break!

Before the final climb, which was on steep boulders, we put on our jackets as the temperature had dropped from 70F to 50F and the wind had picked up to almost 40mph. We scaled the top and could barely stand up because of the wind. It was actually pretty scary but the view was amazing!

A final stop to put on warm clothes before hiking to the top. You can see the rocky top in the background.

We climbed up the rocks to the top.

Brian and my Uncle sitting at the top trying to get out of the wind.

Very WINDY!!

We started to head down and took the side trail to the second mountain. This part added 1.4 miles to our trip. This trail was damp and slippery and made climbing hard and I was glad once we were done with that part. We reached the original trail and braked for lunch then headed back down.

The view from the second mountain. The mountain in the background is the one we had just climbed!

Total it took us about 5 hours to complete the whole hike with all the stops. We hiked two mountains with a total of 4000+ feet of elevation and a total of 6.2 miles! Sunday I woke up with slightly sore calves and hips.

Monday I went out for a shake out run and felt great! My legs are still a little sore but I am taking it super easy this week in preparation for the half!

Happy Labor Day!!

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Three Things Thursday

1. Scheduling doctors appointments for 9am is the best idea ever. Instead of my usual wake up time of 5am, I got to sleep in until 6am and head out for a well lit morning run! I ran a pretty hilly route and my legs still felt tired from the tempo Tuesday workout. But 5 miles is 5 miles and it felt great to get it done!

2. This weekend Brian and I are going hiking! We plan to hike about 4.8 miles and over 4000ft of elevation! We also get to go and visit family, including Brian's adorable nephew!

3. One more week until my Half Marathon! Next Sunday, September 12th I will be toeing the line of my second half marathon. I ran this same half two years ago with my best friend Kaylie. Sadly this year I will be running solo but I am still very excited to see how it goes!

Have a great weekend!

Wednesday, September 1, 2010


It may be the first of September but it still feels like August here! All week we have been experiencing a heat wave!!

Last night I finished off August with another tough workout with the running club. After a warm up on the trails, we did 1000m at tempo pace as a group and then split up. I headed off with two other women to do 4x1 mile repeats. We decided to do the repeats on a loop at the park that is about 1200m long but has some rolling hills. Thankfully the other women had garmins otherwise I would not have known when we had reached a mile.

My legs felt dead after the first mile and I wondered how I was going to complete the whole workout. The rolling hills of the course did not help much in my pace and I was wishing we were at the track!

4x1 miles with 1 min rest in between
7:05, 7:15, 7:29, 7:41

With last nights workout I finished August with 119.7 miles!! That is the most mileage I have ever run in one month! I was surprised with myself that I was able to increase from 20 miles a week to 25-29 miles a week and not feel completely wiped out. With the extra mileage I feel fitter and faster!

How was your August?? Happy Wednesday!