Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Life with some running

Kaylee survived her food challenge! Yay! Also, in a brief moment of bravery, I introduced the same soy product to Emily. Emily has FPIES to egg yolk, but until a few months ago the allergist told us to steer clear of soy too (because of Kaylee). When he told us we could give soy a try, we were too scared. Anyway, it seems both kids can handle soy flour in bread, which means that eating in restaurants might become an option! Or maybe even a vacation! You wouldn't believe how many foods have soy in them.

Besides the stressful food challenge, little miss Emily also had a birthday last week! She got a trike for her birthday, which she loves, and we took the family apple picking on her special day. She's as serious as her sister (as can be seen in her picture), but we're pretty sure she had a good day. She keeps singing happy birthday to Kaylee, so I keep singing happy birthday to her, in response she places those pudgy little hands on my face and with a huge smile says "Mama stop it!"

Another exciting piece of news...Kaylee starts Kindergarten next week! It won't actually be much different than pre-school, except that it will be everyday instead of 3 days. But it's new and different, and marks the real beginning of her schooling journey. Sniff sniff. I think, I'm more excited than sad. I think. And I think she's more excited than anxious. At least for this week...

As far as marathon training goes, there's not too much to report. Last week I ran 60 miles (65 was the plan), so not too far off the mark. My ankle was fine all week, then I ran a super hard workout yesterday, and today it's a bit stiff. This week I have 74-75 miles planned, and another 3 hour long run on Sunday. I'll let you know how it goes.

Here's a random running shoe question. Anyone out there run in the new Kinvara 3's? I am having the darnedest time breaking them in. They cut up my heels something wicked. My mother and Nick seem to be having the same issue with them. I'm wondering if this a common problem? Any thoughts?

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Besides Running...

My mind is so preoccupied today! Kaylee has a food challenge tomorrow at her allergist's office, and it is making me feel cranky and stressed. I keep telling her (and others) that it's no big deal. She's well over the age that she should be to have grown out of her FPIES issue with soy, but deep, deep inside, it's stressing me out. Yesterday she asked me what happens if she hasn't grown out it. I just told her that's why we'll be in the doctor's office, so they can help. But seriously, if she gets sick, it is going to be awful. And really messy. And awful. Oh wait, I already wrote that. Oh yes, and Kaylee is smart enough to know that in general avoiding soy is way better than the risk of getting sick, so she's not exactly thrilled about the idea of eating something that might make her yak all over the place. The reaction can take up to three to occur too, which means we'll be spending a good portion of the day at the doctor's office waiting to see what happens. Ugh.

In other news, last week was a reasonably good week from a running perspective. I ran 74 miles, which is another distance PR for me. I was tired and fighting off a cold, but managed run my workouts, and now I'm over whatever I was fighting. I had a three hour long run planned for Sunday. Because I was tired (and maybe slightly sick), I wasn't really looking forward to running for three hours at the crack of dawn, but you know, it has to be done sometimes. Anyway, I went out there and ran. On the plus side, the weather was just awesome. Nice and cool, but bright and sunny too. I also found the run less boring because my mind seemed occupied with thinking about the Hunger Games books I've been reading.

The first mile was all about me waking up (around 9:00 pace). Eventually I settled into an 8:30 pace. Around 11 miles, I picked it up a bit. The first 11 miles were 8:30ish pace, and the last 11 were 7:50ish pace, for a total of 22 miles at 8:08 pace. Oh I almost forgot, around 19 miles into the run I twisted my ankle. It was a good one too. At first, I thought I might have sprained it, but I hopped on it for a few seconds and kept running. My ankle seemed fine at first, but by the end of the day it was stiff. So, I took Monday off, which wasn't planned, but I hadn't planned on twisting my ankle either...I'll run today and see how it does. Am I stressed about my ankle now? I don't know. It will either turn out to be nothing, or it will get worse. If it gets worse, then I guess I'll have readjust my plans. Right now though, I'm more focused on this whole food challenge thing that's about to go down tomorrow. Wish us luck!

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Where did my baby go!

One of my little ladies just had another birthday. And, wow, it is shocking how big she is now. She is this whole little package of a big person. Sure, sure, you're thinking I make absolutely no sense, but it's perfectly clear in my mind how she's a big little person, or wait, maybe she's a little big person...okay, maybe it's not so clear in my mind. I do know, however, that she was once a baby (not so very long ago), but in a few short weeks she'll be going to Kindergarten. And that, my friends, is just crazy! If I blink my eyes, I might just find that I have a teenager on my hands. Though, it seems to me, that Kaylee already has some teenager traits, but that's a story for another day.

Anyway, It's approximately 9.5 weeks until the big marathon, which is sort of cool because now I'm in the single digits of how many weeks of training are left. And when one really thinks about it, it's actually only 6.5 weeks because there's that whole tapering thing that happens. So yeah, things are looking promising. Last week I ran 64 miles, which was the plan. This week I'll be aiming for 71-73 miles depending on how the three hour long run goes on Sunday. Having to run the long runs slow drives me crazy in a way, but it's also nice (sort of). With warm humid weather, hilly loops, and my massive increase in mileage having permission to run slower for the long run is nice. It would be nicer, however, if there was someone else to run with (which I'm sure is a hope/dream/desire most runners have). I find the long run to be especially boring when run slow and with no company.

Overall, though, training is coming along. I might be adjusting to the mileage increase. (Key word, might.) Some days are definitely better than others. My 5K speed has definitely left me for the time being. Intervals that I could run a few months ago, I can't run now. (Like I would fly off the treadmill and into the wall if I tried.) But, and this is crucial, the tempo paces that I've been maintaining I couldn't do a few months ago. So, something is definitely changing, and change can be good...

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Manic Marathon Training

My marathon training is making me manic. With about 10.5 weeks to BayState, I've been going through a whole spectrum of emotion (actually I'm not sure emotion is the right word). There have been a number of days where I'm convinced I must be a lunatic. I'm just guessing, but my 5-6 weeks of building up to 70 miles of running a week might have made me question my sanity. Just a thought though. (I did wind up running 71 miles last week, which is a distance PR for me.)

I'm the type of runner that is quite happy to run 40-50 miles a week, so this push to increase mileage has been difficult. Some days I question that I'll be able to make it to the start line without an injury (which, let's face it, remains to be seen). Some days I question why I feel the need to train for marathons at all. I clearly do not have a marathoner body, and I've been running quite well at shorter distances, so why am I set on marathon training? I don't know. In the marathon, I have a lot of self doubt. Is the risk of injury worth the effort? I guess it is, because here I am, in the thick of marathon training.

Those questions have been plaguing me as I have slowly built up mileage. I'm sure part of it is being tired. Obviously, increasing mileage for a number of weeks in a row is going to be an adjustment. Then yesterday, something new happened, I was dragging the trash and recycle down the street (long story), when I suddenly had the urge to run. I was in flip flops though, so I didn't, but I wanted to. Then this morning I couldn't wait to run! I really really wanted get out there and run! Of course, by the time I had the opportunity to actually go (7:45 pm), I didn't want to. Now you see, my desire to run is completely manic lately. One minute I can't wait to get out there, and the next I want to take a nap instead. And while I'm running (in between the moments of wanting or not wanting to) I get these brief glimpses of me getting stronger. They usually only last a couple miles, but I'm suddenly running taller and realizing that a difficult pace doesn't feel so difficult. I like those moments. They feel more promising.

This past weekend I ran a 20 miler at 8:18 pace. It was warm and ridiculously humid, but for the most part I felt okay. I did have a headache and a bit of nausea afterward. The next day I did a 10 miler with 40 minutes at 6:35 pace. My experiment for this training cycle is running some type of workout the day after my long run. So far, it seems to be working out. My legs haven't fallen yet anyway. I guess that's where I am right now: training hard, grateful my legs are still moving, and hoping to get stronger.

Anyone else out there go through manic running times?

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Still Running

The summer has been going well. Since the big move, things have settled a bit and I've been able to get back into a running routine. Thus far my training weeks have gone: 44 miles, 52 miles, 60 miles, 66 miles, 60 miles. I've done a number of 14 mile runs, and my longest run thus far has been 17.25. This weekend I have another long run scheduled. It will be a 2:45 run and may or may not get me to 20 miles. I'll let you know how it goes. The 17 miler was slower than my typical long runs (8:37 pace), but it was a challenging course and I'm running more miles than I normally do. The day after I ran a killer 10 mile workout. Still, slow long runs don't exactly yield confidence for me, but that's where I am right now.

As far as marathon training goes, it's probably too early to tell how things are going. More miles is tiring. Well, it's either the miles or an almost 5 year old and 2 year old running around...I'll let you decide. I don't have a definitive training plan, which is typical for me, but I am more committed this time around. Looking through the Run Faster book, I found a table that loosely identifies miles per week with competitiveness and race distance. Sort of in the middle is just competitive. For the 5K, that's 40-50 miles, which is what I was running when I ran 18:48. For the half marathon, that's 50-60 miles, which is what I was running when I ran 1:29:11. For the marathon, that's 60-70 miles, which has never been what I've run (except in college when I only ran the 5K). I've also never been able to run the marathon times that the calculators say I should be able to run based on my other race distance times. So, it's probably not so surprising that this time around I'm making an effort to stay between 60-70 miles. I'm also making more of an effort to let go of some of my ridiculous interval workouts and replace them with slower tempo and MP runs. It's hard though. I like the feeling of short and fast, but I don't think it's really helping my marathon time. It's hard to say how things will go. There are still almost 12 weeks to go, and that's a long time. Right now, other than being tired, I seem to be holding up okay.

And just for fun I'll leave you with a couple pics.  :)

 The ladies found my iPod.

I have no idea what Em is doing, but she's cute.

I hope everyone else's training is going well!