Run!, Training

The SF Marathon Week 17 Training Recap

17 down, 1 to go.   I’m trying not to dwell on that.

This was the first week that I fully embraced the taper.  Some might say I took it too far.  😛  I guess there really is a way to run less when training.   I didn’t mean to have such an ummm- “relaxed” week it just kind of happened.

The week started off rough.  I got little to no sleep on Sunday night and almost called in.  good thing I didn’t as my boss wasn’t feeling well either and didn’t make it in.  Then when I finally did make it into work, I was greeted by the news that my fish had died.    Can you be done with the week by 8:20 on a Monday?  Work was crazy from that point forward all week.

Monday- Rest.  After 13 miles on Sunday and crap sleep, I was fried.  Throw in the work day from hell and I was done.

Tuesday- Rest.   I thought about running, I really did but I was still feeling kind of foggy.   Besides, I had plenty of time during the rest of the week right?

Wednesday- Run Fall Out Boy!!!!!  Running was the plan but when you are given the opportunity to see one of your favorite bands for the cost of only 2 drinks- you take it!   So I made my trip to the fair a little sooner than planned.  Both the funnel cake and the concert were amazing. 😃😃  They played all the songs I wanted them too and a few more.

Thursday- Rest.  I took my gym bag to work.  Even though I was still super tired I was planning on running.   I really was but once again I allowed my family to text-coerce me into going to dinner with them.  Yum.

Friday- 4 miles.  Holy crap, I ran on a Friday!   I didn’t get home until 7 but I was out the door fairly quick.  After 4 days off, I was kind of worried my legs wouldn’t remember what to do.   They did!  It was slow and still very warm but it was nice to get moving.

Saturday- Rest.  Damn, I’m really good at this rest thing aren’t I?  I wasn’t completely sloth like though.  I headed down to SLO and did a bit of shopping.  That counts as moving the legs, right?

Sunday- 9 miles.  I headed out around 8 but I should have headed out sooner.  It was way hotter than I would have liked.   I packed my Camelbak with more supplies than I needed and filled it with water.  I knew I didn’t need all of it but I wanted to practice carrying the weight.  The run was hot and slow and my neck was a little sore after it.   I was a nasty, sweaty mess.  Whose idea was it to train in the summer?

Shouldn’t I be feeling at least a little more fit these days?  Every run just seems so damn hard.   The smallest thing seems to trigger my asthma and I am freaking out.  But let’s save all the drama for another post, ok?

How was your week?

Seen any good concerts lately? 

Tell me something shiny!



Run!, Training

The SF Marathon Week 16 Training

I just had to look up what week I was in, it’s all starting to blur.  😛

The head games have multiplied…the race is so close and unfortunately my last few weeks of running have not been confidence building.   More like the exact opposite.    I felt pretty damn good after my 20 miler a few weeks ago.  I haven’t since.  I’m trying to tell myself that it’s all part of training but I hurt and I am tired and I just… I don’t know.

Monday- Rest.  I had a few vacation days from work and it was so nice to have no alarm to set.   I really wanted to sleep in but I woke up a little before 8.  Grr.  However, I must have slept soundly- I woke up with a dead arm.  Guess I hadn’t moved from the first position I fell asleep in.

Tuesday- 7.12 miles.  Birthday miles!!!  Another day off too.  I was torn what to run today.  I know some people like to run their birthday but let’s be real, there was no way I was running 35 miles or kilometers.  35 minutes seemed too short and 3.5  miles seemed like a cop out.  So instead I ran the day.  It slow and hot but it was fun.  I ran to the high school where my mother was having tennis practice.  I then dragged her along to a local burger place to get my free burger!!! The little things excite me.

Wednesday- Rest.  Back to work.  They bought me donuts!

Thursday- 3.75 miles.  Talk about slow!  I think all the over indulging of the past few days caught up with me, I did not feel well.   Plus, I decided that until the marathon, I should probably wear flats.  I forgot how sore that would make me.  Ouch!

Friday- Rest.   I still felt off, I think I found my sugar intake limit.  Rough.  A new toy came in the mail though.

Saturday- Rest.  Sensing a pattern here?  After feeling poorly for 2 days, I chose sleep over running.   After a few errands, I just had a low key evening.  Plus, I was sucked into streaming Stranger Things on Netflix.  So good.

Sunday- 13.1 miles.  Dress rehearsal.   My last long run of training.  Plan ( what plan) called for 12, I wanted 16.  Yes, I know that’s stupid.  I was also testing a few things out this run.   When I was shopping in Santa Barbara last weekend, I picked up a new Lululemon skirt for race day.  I also recently ordered a new hydration vest as well.   I’ve never been a huge fan of them but I need to be able to carry more water than just my handheld.  So this long run was a test of all that.

Good lord, it was rough.  It took my legs 4.5 miles to warm up.  My lungs wanted no part in running.  I probably should have tested the hose on the hydration pack before running.  I choked twice.   My new skirt rode up in very uncomfortable ways and yet also migrated down.  That shouldn’t be possible?!   I just kept moving forward.  I hit 13.1 and called it for the day.   Called my mom for a pick up as I was 4 miles from home and went for Chipotle.   I really need to stop eating when I’m stressed.

24 miles for the week.  Bring on taper.  Even though part of me is excited for no long run next week, I feel like I haven’t done enough to prepare.   The voices in my head are getting louder.   But, this is the best week to quiet them.  It’s fair time!!!!!   It’s time for my yearly indulgence in a funnel cake.  Hopefully, I’ve detoxed enough from birthday cake/ donuts to enjoy it.   I look forward to a funnel cake and pretzel all year long until fair time.    😛

So here’s to week 17- another week in flats, even fewer miles and a funnel cake at the end.

How was your week?  Do anything fun?

Do you have a dress rehearsal run?

What’s your favorite fair food?

Run!, Training

San Francisco Marathon Training Week 12

Seriously, that’s a long title.   Oof.

How is it week 12 already?  My little countdown app is telling me I only have 41 days to go.   Holy crap!

I admit I struggled hard with motivation this week.     Everything seemed hard.  I thought my boss coming back from vacation would make things easier but I just felt fried.  At one point on Friday, I had so many pots in the fire I couldn’t even tell which way was up.   I was just waiting for one of them to blow up in my face.  Which may still happen this week, who knows.   All week long, I kind of just wanted to curl up in the corner and hide under a blanket.

This spilled into running.  I had serious trouble getting myself to run on Monday and then Wednesday turned into a rest day too.  Convinced myself that my shins needed more time anyways.   Week 12 is not the time to be getting lazy but I suppose it was bound to happen sooner or later.

Monday- 3.5 miles  My legs were feeling rough for this run.   I haven’t run a Monday since I first hurt my shins.   Taking the day off after my long run seemed to help but I knew I couldn’t run on Tuesday this week.   I headed to the lake path and planned to take it nice and easy.    Even slow running with walking intervals was rough.  My shins protested.  I called it when lap 3 put me back at my car.  3.5 miles was not a great way to start the week.

Tuesday- Rest  A mandatory conference call had been scheduled for after normal work hours.  This was why I had to move my run up to Monday.

Wednesday- Rest  I had planned on running, even took my stuff to work.  I tell myself I took the day off because my shins hurt.  While that is partially accurate, I didn’t even take my gym bag out of the car in the morning.  So yeah, I enjoyed pizza night instead.

Thursday- 7 miles  Work was tiring and the last thing I wanted to do was run.  I told myself to suck it up and change.  I left work town and headed for the river path.   Of course, right as I parked I suddenly felt like I needed to use the restroom.  Of course- most of my routes have no bathrooms or water fountains.  Whatever, I figured that would be a reason to keep the run short.   I started out up the hill and just stuck to the run/ walk intervals.  My legs were feeling ok so when I hit the turn around point I decided to go a little further.  I made a left and headed up a street.   I remember the street from my very first 10K years ago but I remembered it wrong.  I thought it was flat but it was hillier than I recalled.  Little rollers but they still felt like mountains.  But it’s cool- I made some new friends-

On the way back, the wind had turned insane.   It was pushing me backwards it was so strong, I felt like I was running in quicksand.   That said, my running intervals were the fastest they’ve been since I got hurt so this run ended up being more like speed work.

Friday- Rest  Work was insane.   Straight up crazy.  By the time I got off I was running out the door.  But I didn’t have to close so yay!

Saturday- 9 miles  The plan called for a 10 mile long run and 8 mile easy this weekend.  I knew Sunday was going to be busy with family stuff so I was doubtful of getting a run in.   With only a 10 mile long run planned, I got a little cocky- I mean what’s 10 miles?  Stupid.  I didn’t start my run until 8:30.  Stupid.   By mile 2 it was warm.  NikeC was out for her run too and we started texted each other about how warm it was.  I kept a comfortable pace until I hit the bridge.  Even though I know it’s stupid, I still fly across the thing and then up past Walmart.  Miles 4-5 saw a 9:14 and 9:44.  Oops.  So not long run pace for a person with wonky shins.   I walked more of mile 6 than planned but still the pace was decent.  Mile 7 saw a break- NikeC!  Our routes crossed paths and I finally got to meet the cutest little guy ever.

We stopped and chatted for a bit before going on to finish our runs.   Our chat meant I wasn’t going to be able to finish 10 but it was worth it.   I was planning on ending my run at the high school and getting a ride from my mother.  She’s having summer practices right now- and bonus- the school has water fountains and sometimes the bathrooms are open.   Thing is her practice ended at 10:30.    I picked up the pace and managed to get there right at 10:30.  Those last 3 miles were most I’ve run without walk breaks in a month.  Sweet!

4.5 miles walk–  Knowing that Sunday was iffy, I had a second run of the day in the back of my mind.  I headed out around 3 for some more miles.   I wanted to run it like last week’s double but the week caught up with me so I walked it.  I’m still counting it because let’s be real here- there will be walking in this marathon.   I may as well get used to doing it on tired legs now instead of race day.

Sunday- rest  Happy Father’s Day!  I knew my mother and I had plans in SLO and then family dinner in the evening.  I could have run in the morning but I was just so tired, I chose sleep instead.    I still managed to get in 10,000 steps without running so that’s not too lazy.  I also came home with some pretties-

So, 24 miles for the week.  Could have been better, could have been worse.   My shins were overly fussy in the beginning of the week but they calmed down by the end.   I have big plans for this week so I am hoping they will continue to behave.   Fingers crossed!!  I also hope the motivation bus comes by again, I fear I will get sucked into the black hole that is binge watching Lost again and put off running.  Oh and I have some awesome news share this week!

How was your week?

Bought any new gear lately?

What are you watching?


Goals, Run!, Slacker, Training

Marathon Musings 2

It’s week like this that freak me out about marathon training.

Last week, I was riding the high of my highest mileage week ever and I was stoked.  This week? Three days off… in a row.     Oh crap, is the real Slacker back?

Cue freak out.  The plan I am following is pretty specific. Do the work outs when and how prescribed.  Be as consistent as possible.  Yes life happens but try to keep the volume consistent and lower the intensity if needs be.  Did that happen? No.

Poor planning and faulty equipment brought about Monday’s missed run.  I had a procedure done and the odds of running afterwards were unlikely but I was holding out hope.   Then my damn car died in the parking lot of the doctors office.  Seriously?!    I took it as a sign that I shouldn’t be running and sweating all over the new cuts I had on my body.  I figured I could make up the missed miles on Friday.  Maybe.

Yeah, it’s been one of those weeks

Tuesday called for 800’s and I was excited to run them.  I kind of love intervals and wanted to see how I fared.   Except, the worst allergy day of my life sent me home from work where I proceeded to nap for 3 hours.  On the floor.  Maybe it was a gnarly head cold but all I know is that it got progressively worse from Sunday until Tuesday when my right eye was almost swollen shut.  What the hell.

Wednesday wasn’t much better.   My eyes were open and I made it through a full day of work but still felt crappy.  Running was out the question though.  New carpet went in at home on Wednesday so that evening was spent furniture moving.   Can I count that as a workout?  I actually cleared 10,000 steps which I only do when I run. 😛

I did so good for 7 weeks but week 8 is kicking my ass.   Now I am freaking out.  What kind of fitness am I losing?  Or not gaining?     Next week’s intervals are supposed be 1K repeats.  Do I stick to the plan or run the 800’s I missed?   Next week also sees my tempos increase to 8 miles.  I’m not ready!  I need to reread the book again.

Speaking of next week- I am supposed to be running a half marathon on the Saturday of Memorial Day  weekend.     I was torn between using it as part of my long run or using it as my tempo since the miles are supposed to increase next week anyways.  It’s on the beach so I figured marathon pace would be a good goal for it.    Something made me double check the time.  10AM!!!    What the hell!!!  This is California for crying out loud.  I have never had any race start that late.    Not even a 5K.

I have a few concerns with this.  1- the temp.  It’s in work town and the temperature is usually fairly moderate but I would be finishing after noon so who knows?    2- food.  I don’t fuel before half marathons or long runs yet.   But I am also used to a 7AM start for races.   I think I would have to eat something before a 10AM race start.  Which wouldn’t be a horrible thing since I do need to get used to fueling more.  But that leads to concern 3.  3-bathrooms.    Food could make me sick; my stomach has a proclivity for going wonky at the worst times.   What do beach races usually not have?  Bathrooms.    Ok, technically, there are bathrooms at 2 points but they are off course and would add 1/4-1/2 mile if needed.   Plus that would be across soft dune sand.   Grrrr.  I am seriously considering running the 10K instead.

So help me out…

Half marathon or 10K?

How much damage will this week set me back in marathon training?

Run!, Slacker, Training

Never say Never?

So, about that marathon thing.   And how I said never.

This has been simmering for a while.   A long while.   January of 2015 saw my first (and only so far) 25K.  16 miles.   While that is still 10 miles short of a marathon, I was out there for 5+ hours.    That started me thinking.   Yes, I was still 10 miles short but whatever marathon I chose wouldn’t have 3000+ ft in elevation gain or involve actual mountains.    But a trail 25K was still a long way from a road marathon.   The seed was planted.

Then last fall, in the middle of my running funk, I read Ultra Marathon Man by Dan Karnazes.   That book will give you all sorts of crazy ideas.  Plus he eats pizza while on crazy long runs- how awesome is that?!   Now, a marathon was a crazy enough idea for me.  I wasn’t going to running in Antarctica or any 200 mile solo runs.   But even then it was still just a seedling.  It was still a maybe someday, far away.

New Year’s saw me stating emphatically that this was going to be the year of no goals.  After spending 2+ years chasing a sub 2 half and failing, I was burned out.  Some health issues added to that as well but I was feeling fried.   This was going to be the year to just enjoy running.  That is still the plan.   With a twist.

Running is a lot like shopping at Target... You intend to run only $30 5Ks and before you know it, you're registering for $175 marathons!!:

Back in January, in one long text message session with Ashley and Heather, we started talking about The San Francisco Marathon.  Ashley loved the race and Heather and I had always thought about running it.  So we made plans to all take a road trip and run one of the half marathons.  San Francisco has 2- the first half and the second half.  I joked that if I was going to San Francisco, I was running the Golden Gate Bridge.  So we were running the 1st half.  Cool, right?

Then a week or so later, they decided they wanted to run the full.  Well crap.  What do I do?  I had 2 choices- run my first full marathon or deal with public transportation in a very large city all by myself for the first time in my life.  Both were scary propositions.

I chose the marathon.

Never+say+NEVER+with+   anything++running+related...+   "Never+could+I+run+a+5k."   ....+DID+IT!+   "Never+could+I+run+a+10k"   ...+DID+IT!   "Never+could+I+run+a+   Half-Marathon."+   ....DID+IT!+:

Here’s my thinking- it was already in the back of my mind, so why not San Francisco?  I had 2 friends running it and it was a city I’ve been wanting to visit again for a long time.   The potential for hills was a little intimidating but I’ve said repeatedly that I hate flat courses, right?   Plus Golden Gate Bridge! And friends!

But I still wasn’t ready to commit.   Remember back in January when I asked for Excel help?  I was cobbling together a training plan.  I affectionately call it the McHig plan.  I took my customized McMillan plan from last year and worked it into a Hal Higdon Novice plan for marathon training.    I started training for SF the first week of February.  Surprise!

Before I would register though, I needed an escape plan.   My first 16 miler falls in the beginning of April.  I told myself if I completed it and hated myself or running after I would pay the change fee and drop to the half.  If I pulled it off and felt ok, training would continue.  Next step would be to complete a 20-22 miler in late June, early July.  Same rules applied-I could drop at the race expo before the race.   And lastly, if all hell breaks loose, there is a finish line at the halfway point.  I could call it there and Uber myself to the finish to meet Ashley and Heather.


I had a training plan, friends to run it with and an escape plan -all I had to do was register.   Except when I tried to register in February, the website refused to cooperate.  It wouldn’t let me use my discount code- Ashley’s an ambassador!- and it kept throwing up an error message.   I missed a price deadline because of this.  Finally after a few weeks of Twitter conversations and emails back and forth with the staff of the SF Marathon, I was able to complete my registration.  Holy crap, I registered for my first marathon!!

I wasn’t going to tell anyone until post SLO half but I wasn’t very successful.    After some Twitter convos and IG posts, I decided to come clean.   I had my first panic attack after that blog post– ha!!  Shit just got real.  People know now- I have to follow through!  Also, now my crazy shoe buying lately seems a little more understandable.

Did I bite off more than I can chew?  My plan is deliberately long, I know I will miss a few runs along the way.

Ever run San Francisco?

Words of advice?!!? Please!