Tuesday, March 20, 2012

MARCH MADNESS 1/2 marathon recap...plus week in review


During March Madness. How cute is the little girl in the background?!

Monday, March 12: 3miles, 1:15spin
Tuesday, March 13: 4x2miles at 6:30, 6:25, 6:20, 6:15 workout; 60min spin later in the day
Wednesday, March 14: 8miles easy
Thursday, March 15: 8miles easy
Friday, March 16: BRICK
Saturday, March 17: Nice light hill workout with the LifeTime group
Sunday, March 18: Cary Hillstriders March Madness 1/2 marathon

To say this was a crazy week would be an understatement.

I was working in Minnesota Monday through Thursday as we FINALLY were closing on our house Friday (yes, after that whole crazy flight change situation). I chose to be lazy and sleep in with my fiance and didn't run or spin in the morning, but got my butt to LifeTime after working my 8hour day in MN. My shins were actually a little sore due to the massage on my calves.

Tuesday's run seemed like it would be perfect. It was going to be 40degrees (60+ in IL!) so I was ready for a nice workout....except I wasn't anticipating there being black ice where I would do my first two 2mile sets. After sliding all over the place (while still hitting my times I might add!), I moved it in to the treadmill which actually was the perfect shock machine. Literally. My hair was standing up the entire time I was running. So, to complete the workout at the exact paces I was supposed to was a pretty good feeling. I know I'm fitter than what the workout showed, but for the conditions (ice and shock-mill) I'll take it.

Friday morning was a brick workout. 5min run at 10k pace (6min is what Cari had me go at), 10min bike at tempo (180watts, slowed down a bit w/ the race on Sunday), 5min run at 10k pace. The runs again felt ridiculously easy. The bike effort even felt good! This workout was a HUGE success....it probably didn't hurt that I was a TAD bit excited to be closing on our house in a few hours!


Well. When your body goes from being used to running in 40degree weather to 70degree weather, it's a bit shocking. Unfortunately, the 70degree weather caused a lot of people to suffer through the hilliest 1/2 marathon ever.

I also might have been up until 11:30pm (got up at 6am) working on my bridesmaids gifts. Oops. But, the girls LOVED them the next day, so it was totally worth it. I will make sure I get more than 7hours of sleep, though, next time I do a race.

In terms of March Madness, Cari talked with me about the plan and it was pretty simple: go out and win it. Defend your title. Bring back your confidence.

On Saturday, I was able to do an interview with Wendy for Cari and as a kind of recap on Miles and Trials. Wendy actually pieced things together as a test and here is how it turned out:


Race day was okay. I started off relaxed at 6:30s, well except for mile 3 as that is downhill. Ryan decided to run some of the race with me, so I had him look a few times to see how close the next female was. I wasn't going to push myself harder than I needed to with Powerman Alabama on Saturday (yes, 6 days away). My splits are below. Nothing crazy, but it felt good to defend my title and all of my dad's running group members were just so happy. I love this race.

Ryan racing with me during the first few miles. Feeling nice and relaxed. And smiley :)

the pack near the beginning!

Happiness for many reasons: Matt ran the 1/2 successfully after being sidelined with a hammy issue just a few weeks ago!

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Weekly Review: 3/5-3/11. AWESOME Tempo plus first 20 of 2012!

Monday 3/5: 90min bike in AM, 4mile run in PM

Tuesday 3/6: SUCCESSFUL 60minute tempo!!!

Wednesday 3/7: 60min bike, 3mile run

Thursday 3/8: BRICK workout (see below)

Friday 3/9: 7miles easy

Saturday 3/10: 8miles + Engaged Encounter Marriage Retreat

Sunday 3/11: 20miles on Cary March Madness 1/2 marathon course

See what a "local" week can do to a girl?!

For the past ELEVEN days I've been working in good ol' Illinois and I have definitely noticed that I've had more energy. Maybe it's the fact that I SEE my fiance everyday, but I think the fact that I'm not up in the air twice in one week also helps a bit!

Joe and I came to the conclusion on last Sunday's 16miler that I would not see Dave Davis for a massage as planned in hopes that my legs would be fresh for my tempo that was scheduled on Wednesday. Well, turns out my legs felt fresh on Monday and I decided to do the tempo on Tuesday. I looked at the weather for Tuesday and Wednesday; seeing that there was a wind advisory for both days, I just decided to run the tempo on the treadmill on Tuesday. I started at 9.0 (6:40 pace) and increased by .1 every 5minutes as was the plan (that failed) last week. I was feeling awesome (I even took a gel to practice like I would in a race!) until about 50minutes... my hamstring just felt a little fatigued, so I stopped for literally 10 seconds to bend down and stretch it at 51:10-51:20. The rest of the run felt awesome! I was SO happy!!!

BRICK recap:

My brick on Thursday went just as well as my tempo on Tuesday! Ryan gave me the option of which Brick to do and I chose the one that he'd be doing the next day... 15minute bike at 95% max followed by a 7min run at 10k pace x2 with a 5min spin between. My bike goal was to ride at 190 watts (last bike test my max was 205). Well, my legs couldn't quite get the gears right and my first 15min was at 180 watts. The run felt easy and I questioned whether 6minute pace is my 10k pace afterall. The next 15minutes felt much better and I averaged 188 watts -- maybe I just needed to get that little struggle out there. The final 7minute run was again no problem, so I'm thinking I need to either raise the incline on the treadmill to a 2.0+ or increase the pace. We'll see what I decide on Friday.

Finally, Joe and I completed my first (his second) 20miler of 2012--yay for semi-marathon training:)

Overall, I really think being home helped my training a TON and I'm thankful that I have had the past 11 days in Illinois.

In other news,

WE CLOSE ON OUR HOUSE ON FRIDAY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! It will be amazing for both of us to live in one house (after we fix the house up--so hopefully summer time) and not have to live out of a suitcase like we have been for the past 4 years. This upcoming training week is going to FLY by knowing we close on Friday!

And finally, Ryan's aunt forwarded me the best email ever...(see image above)

Sunday, March 4, 2012

Week in review: 2/27-3/4 and congrats to my fast friends!

Monday 2/27: easy 4.5miles before a late-night dinner with Aunt Linda & Uncle Dave
Tuesday 2/28: 5miles AM; 1hour spin 2mile easy PM
Wednesday 2/29: failed 60minute tempo
Thursday 3/1: 7miles easy
Friday 3/2: BRICK workout (see below)
Saturday 3/3: LTF Run club, 1:30spin
Sunday 3/4: 16miles, 45min spin

This week was pretty uneventful in terms of running/biking, but not with life in general...

Monday morning, I had a 7am flight out of Midway. Ryan drives me to O'Hare as it's only 20ish minutes away versus Midway that almost triples the time. So, this was the first time in awhile that I had to drive myself to the airport. I change coats over the weekend depending on what my outfit is (business outfits look better with another jacket)....and Sunday night we went out to dinner. Instead of bringing my already-packed purse for work, I just brought my license, credit card and some cash. Seemed like a good idea at the time....until 6am at Midway on Monday. I called Ryan's phone but it went straight to voicemail. Awesome. I debated and finally called his house phone; his mom answered luckily, got the phone to Ryan, he drove my license/credit card/cash to me as fast as he could, and I boarded the 7:45am flight. I got VERY lucky.

My run on Monday really was rough; I had been stressed all morning, had a 2hour drive to the dealership, 1.5hour drive back to my hotel before I could run. But I knew I'd be sore still from my massage if I didn't run, so I suffered through it instead.

Tuesday I was still pretty sore, specifically my left calf. My hamstring that had been an issue for the later part of last year was on my right side, so this left calf tightness really bothered me. I decided that I'd attempt a warmup Wednesday morning and if I was still tight, wait until Wednesday evening after work (something I hate doing) to get my 60min tempo in.

I don't think it would have mattered.

My tempo was supposed to be a progression: start at 6:45 pace and increase the speed by .1 every 5minutes so I'd be finishing at just under 6minute pace. The first 20-25minutes were fine, but then just before 30minutes I started feeling the tightness again. I stopped for 30, maybe 45, seconds to stretch my calves. It seemed to help. Until minute 43 when the tightness came back. This time, I stopped and stretched not only my calves, but my hamstrings and ITs as well; this took 1:30. I seriously contemplated ending the workout right then as I had already stopped twice, but then told myself I could tough it out for the remaining 17minutes. And I did.

I ended up running 9.22miles, which is not good considering last week I ran 9.6miles. I told Cari and she thinks my massage (first one back since December) might have had something to do with it as the tightness in my calves was definitely from that. So, I decided that this past Sunday I'll hold off on the massage. Hopefully I'll have a better recap!

10min bike spin, 5min easy run warmup
5min@10k run, 10min hard bike (race pace), 5min@10k run
5min easy spin
8min@10k run, 12min hard bike (race pace), 8min@10k run
5min easy spin
11min@10k run, 9min hard bike (race pace), 6min@10k run

Well, the run is clearly my strength. I ran the 10k pace at 6min as that's what I did for the last brick so figured it's probably right. It felt easy, which is great. Unfortunately, the bike felt hard. Since my bike test showed my all-out effort puts my watts at 210, Ryan thought I should be riding at 180watts....except that I was barely peddling because it was so hard. So, we compromised on 165 and I was able to push hard at a decent pace, but it was just frustrating.

I wish my schedule allowed me to bike more, but with all of the travel it's really hard. I'm home three days each week (except for the one week a month that I am local), so I just bike those three days at decent watts on the computrainer; the other days, I try to find a LifeTime that I can go to and ride their spin bikes or just cross my fingers that the hotel bike isn't a total piece of junk.

I am not making up excuses as I knew training for duathlons would be very tough with not being home very often (goal is to qualify for the team to race for the US at the World Championships). Come race day on March 24th, I'm going to give it everything I have. Luckily, my run is improving and it is only just over an hour of racing on the bike, but I only have a 10k beginning run to get out ahead of as many females as possible and only a 5k at the end to try to catch the girls that pass me on the bike. It's going to be tough.

Hoping to post a great 60minute tempo and brick recap next weekend!

In other running news, HUGE CONGRATS to my former college teammate Meggan Franks on WINNING the Rock'n'Roll New Orleans marathon in a blazing fast 2:49:06. Wanna know what's even better? She had a baby just over a year ago. She's truly an inspiration.

Can't forget my Oglesby Turkey Trot friend! Julie Ralston WON the Little Rock 1/2 marathon in 1:22:53 today! I'm super excited to toe the line with her at the U of I marathon come April.

Congrats to my running friends for a PHENOMENAL weekend!!