Friday, October 12, 2012

The Good, Bad and Ugly of the Long Beach Half Marathon

I decided to sign up for the Long Beach Half Marathon as a fun run with no pressure or expectations. My brother and sister in law were doing the half and both got elite entry into the race. It would be a nice, short runcation for us. We left Saturday morning and it was going to be a quick trip as we came back Sunday at 12:30. When we got to our hotel, they did not have our reservations and they did not have any rooms available (The BAD) . I found a room available at the host hotel the Hyatt Regency and it ended up working out better for us anyway. We were right near the expo and the start line. We went to the expo and it was one of the bigger race expos that I had been to. All of the people and the race atmosphere started to get us excited and pumped up for the race. We had dinner at Outback and we were back in our room by 6pm, done for the evening.  We were asleep by 8pm and had a wake up call for 4:30.

Our hotel had a walkway connected to the convention center, so it was a short walk

The Aquarium of the Pacific, right behind the Hyatt

Myself, Allison, and Derek outside of the Expo

Lighthouse near Shoreline Village


Derek and Allison left around 6 am to warm up and get ready for the race. I left at 6:15 and walked down to the start to check it out. I warmed up a 1/2 mile and then made my way to the start. The race started on time and we were off. I was trying to do the first 3 miles at 8:30 pace and the second 3 at 8:15 pace. I completely failed my coaches plan and ran all 6 at 8:15 pace. I know that I am not in the best shape and in between miles 6-7 I started to mentally fall apart. It is funny how many half marathons I can complete and how many miles I can complete on a long run and still doubt myself mentally. I did not want to stress out about my time and just relax. I started to slow down and just focus on moving forward. Miles 7-9 were on this long stretch of sidewalk right next to the beach. This long stretch was hard for me to stay positive and focused. I started walking through the water stops, just hoping that I would get better. After mile 9 we headed back towards the direction of the finish. The next 4 miles were just "get to the finish" for me. It is really frustrating doing well with my training but not being able to translate it into a good race. I know I wasn't in racing shape and came into this race without expectations, but I am still frustrated.

Allison and Derek before the race
During the race struggling


 On a positive note, my sister in law Allison won the half marathon with a 1:19:14. She trains so hard and it was so awesome for her to get the win. The race gave us entry into the VIP tent after the race and Allison was treated like a star. She had photos taken, video taped an interview, and had people coming up shaking her hand congrats! My brother Derek ran a 1:13:50. It is so unbelievable how they can run so fast. So I am going to keep training and just keep at it. I love running and I love racing, I just need get better mentally.

Derek running so fast

Allison winning!!


Friday, September 21, 2012


Last weekend was exciting for my husband and I. We got a full night away from the kids and we had a staycation. There was a Groupon for a night at The Saguaro in Scottsdale for $99 plus breakfast. We went with another couple and we had a great time. We went to the pool right when we got there and had a few drinks while the DJ was playing music. There is no better way to feel old than to go to a Scottsdale pool with young people and a DJ. It was fun, but it was completely different from our normal pool scene of floaties and screaming kids.

I took this picture before the drinks :)

Training for the week:
Monday: 8 with 10*90sec on/off @7 min pace
Tuesday: 6 easy
Wednesday : 8 with last 3@8:15
Thursday:4 Easy
Friday: OFF
Saturday:10 (5 easy,3@8:15, 2@7:50)
4 hill sprints
Sunday: 4 recovery

I have Long Beach Half Marathon coming up in 2 weeks. I am excited to be getting out of town for the night and race in some great weather. I am going with my brother Derek and sister in law Allison, both are in the elite field. Hopefully they will run fast and win some money. I do not really have any expectations for the race other than just try to relax and have fun.

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Things for Fall

Here in Arizona I think we are all desperate for Fall to come. Cooler weather, less humidity would be awesome. I have the mindset that if I buy things Fall related, maybe it will show up to Arizona faster. At least I am hopeful! Last week I saw Pumpkin Spice coffee at Target. I had to get it. I love all things pumpkin. It tastes so good and I am going to have to go back so I can stock up.

I also got three new things for winter from Oiselle. Oiselle is a company made up of women runners and they make women's running clothes. Their clothes fit well, look cute, and stay dry through my sweaty runs. It will probably be a month or so until I can wear the new clothes because it is still too warm. I got the Rundelicious top in violet. It is so cute!! It has a small pocket and pull-over thumb holes.

I also got the Stripey Long Sleeve in grey. This top is light weight and also has pull-over thumb holes.
Lastly I got the Lesley Tight. My sister in law Allison has the Lesley Knicker and loves them. I thought I would give the tight a try. It has compression fabric and a small pocket.
I also got a new Fuel Belt. I got the Fuel Belt R20 Revenge Hydration Belt in pink. It is light weight and it doesn't bounce up and down when I run. It has a pocket that can fit gels and keys. It has a Velcro belt so it fits all sizes. This is probably the first hydration belt I actually like.
I am obviously excited for Fall and what is to come with my running. Running and training during the summer has been hard here in Arizona due to the weather. The heat and humidity just wear you out. Cooler weather and more races are just around the corner!

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Training Schedule

Training for this week:
Monday-6 Easy
Tuesday- 6 with 8*200 w/200 recovery jog
Wednesday-8 with strides
Thursday-8 with 5*2 min on/off @7 min pace
Friday- Off
Saturday- 10 with last 2 @ MP
Sunday- Off
 Total 38 miles

I have come to enjoy getting my monthly training schedule from my coach. As soon as I see the email I get a nervous excitement about what's to come in my training. I usually like to look at my long runs first and then I check everything else out. I am a creature of habit and I like having a schedule in my life. When I get my running schedule, it is nice to see what I have coming up and not have to worry about planning it out. I get up really early, so it's nice to just check my schedule and go. If I had to put too much thought into a 3 am run I would probably just choose to stay in bed.

Having a schedule makes me accountable and gives me structure and goals to shoot for. It's also a confidence boost to see the potential that my coach sees. All to often you get the unsure feeling that you won't be able to complete such a fast time of the tempo runs. But then I know that he wouldn't have given me a workout he thought that I could not complete. I am excited to increase my miles and get into all of this marathon training.

Monday, September 3, 2012

A LONG Labor Day Weekend

My husband left on Wednesday to go deer hunting and he wasn't returning until late Saturday night. I was off of work since Wednesday and I had my girls all to myself. It is hard to parent kids in general, but two crazy girls and no husband around to help is a challenge. I tried to keep busy with them so time would go by fast. I struggle to stay patient, but I try to stay positive when things get rough. I was able to get my run in before they woke up every day which helped. Running helps me relieve stress and get much needed alone time. I got a call from my husband late Friday that he got a deer and would be home Friday night. Awesome for me!

Saturday morning we went to the Gilbert Farmers Market. They have a splash pad next to it so after we shopped we let the girls play. They had a great time and they were soaked by the end.


Sunday morning my husband was going bird hunting really early. I got in a run before he left. I fell when I was about 1/2 mile into my run. I am not quite sure what I tripped on. All I know is that one second I was running, the next I was sprawled out on the sidewalk. I scrapped up my knees and my side and my mace shattered when I fell. It took me about 5 minutes to shake it off, but I finished my run. I am definitely sore today and I am glad that today was a planned rest day.

My coach sent me my September running schedule and I am really excited for this fall. Lots of fun races! Hopefully the weather here in Arizona will get cooler and less humid soon.
I have been seeing lots of pictures on twitter of runners wearing pants and sweatshirts and I would be lying if I didn't say I was jealous.

Thursday, August 30, 2012

Back to Running

So it has been almost two weeks since I have gone for a run. I ran 3 miles the day after AFC and then took some time off. I did not exercise last week and I started doing the elliptical Sunday. I really miss running and I was planning on starting back up Sunday. My coach texted me that I can run tomorrow if I could fit it into my schedule. Of course I can!!!

These last two weeks have been nice, but I am more than ready to run again. I have been able to catch up on sleep, spend more time with my husband, and relax. I am an early morning runner (out the door before 4 am) which means early bed time (8:00). I was able to stay up late with my husband and watch  four seasons of Breaking Bad. Great show by the way. I know it was important to take time off and let my body rest. Taking this time has been a struggle for me and I can't wait to start training again. Here are some pictures from the past two weeks:

Drinks in San Diego
Vanessa & Brooklyn grocery shopping with me. Vanessa cried most of the time. Fun times!!
Playing with their cousin Brandon.

**Anne is giving away a $25 Visa Gift Card& Barilla Plus Pasta. Check out her giveaway and awesome blog**


Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Race Schedule

I signed up for my first marathon! I will be running the Phoenix Marathon March 2. I am going to start my training cycle next week. My coach is going to be writing me a training program and  I am totally excited about this challenge.  I am signing up for these races also leading up to my marathon:

Moon Valley Grasshopper 5k Sept 29
3TV Phoenix Half Marathon Nov 4
Mesa Turkey Trot 10k Nov 22
Runners Den/Fiesta Bowl Half MarathonDec 2
PF Changs Rock 'n' Roll Half Marathon Jan 20
Phoenix Marathon Full Marathon March 2

I am hoping that running these races with a fun, relaxed attitude will help my race day nerves. I am taking two weeks off running since my last half. My legs and body should be fresh starting training and though it was hard taking the time off of running, I know it is good for me. My goal for the Phoenix Marathon is just to finish and have a great time.