so thankful

I ran 10 miles today, and the ankle felt great ... a bit of overall stiffness in the ankle/knee/hip, but that's from favoring it I think. Got a "new schedule" from my cousin's wife, who's run 16 marathons in the last 8 years (and had 3 kids during that time ...) and she was sure my injury was a form of tendonitis. I've been icing and taking ibuprofen, as she and several others already had suggested, and things seem to be back on track. I'm going for 18 on Sunday, and hoping it holds!

so very relieved. :)

i'm still sidelined

for the most part, and really really struggling with it. knowing my friends told me to slow down, and i believed a book rather than their wise advice. being terrified i won't heal enough, in time to get the last couple real workouts in. fussing with god. trying to learn patience and humility, not my strong points.


the pic is from a 10k last summer, just for kicks :)

Week 11 update

Not the week I'd hoped for, but such is life. I ran tuesday/wednesday, and realized the ankle really DID need to rest. Swam 42 laps Friday (just over half a mile) at the Y, and ended up kicking the sore ankle against the wall and having new issues crop up! So much for swimming to avoid strain ...
Wednesday I had acupunture on my ankle, which felt weird and good and seemed to help.
Friday my new shoes arrived, hooray! 3rd pair, and last before the marathon ... I hope. The pile is growing :).
Saturday I seriously moped as I had to skip my scheduled 10 mile run, and REALLY missed it. Fears of losing momentum, of possibly fractured ankles, and lack of time alone dominated my weekend. M is still away ... hopes to be home in time for this coming weekend, I am SO ready for him to be back.
Yesterday I swam again, and today I ran 3 easy miles to test the ankle out. I can feel it in strange ways, but the original spot that hurt didn't hurt at all. (Pushing the jogging stroller didn't help). It still needs lots of massage, rest, and stretching I think. Will see how it feels tomorrow before attempting a speed run.

paused ...

that sore ankle? still sore, with pretty strong pain just below my ankle bone. skipped my long run today, did a couple short ones with some soreness during the week. part of me is terrified it's a hairline fracture, but there's no swelling or bruising at all, just intermittent pain when running, and strong pain if i press on one certain spot on my ankle. swam yesterday (laps) for the first time ever, did 42, in a pool where 72=a mile. i'm not a strong swimmer at all, but figured it was better than nothing and didn't strain the ankle. of course I bonked my foot on the wall once, and now have an overall sore ankle, but it's the kind i'm familiar with and it will be fine in a day or two. wanted to go swim double that tonight, but the sitter isn't free and i'm stuck with the boys. feeling a bit pent up, realllllly missing the long run and it's associated free time, and trying not to fret too much. prayers greatly appreciated that it will heal asap, and not be a big deal.

capping off the week

Well I did my 21 yesterday, and whew! The sitter was late, I was nervous and didn't sleep all that well (and I don't expect that to change come race-day) but I went. Got there at about 7:30 and found the group training run already started. I'd tried to register for it but it was full (up to 20 miles with pace groups, run by NYRR folks) so I figured I'd just tag along and snitch from their water stations. I actually found the groups a bit annoying, some with drill-sargent types giving loud commentaries, and others just plain hogging the road in a way that was hard to get away from, and hard not to fall in with as their pace was so steady. I did the first six miles a bit fast (10mm) and was really feeling it in my legs from the previous weekend. I definitely wasn't fully recovered. The next lap (they're 6 each) was a struggle mentally, and physically. At about mile 13 I got a sudden stabbing pain my ankle which I had to stop and massage, and it hurt off/on the rest of the run. I had to stop about 4 times to massage it, and worried that it was something serious. I suspect a tendon strain, but really don't know. No swelling or bruising at all, but still sore to the touch. I've iced and arnica'd and all that, we'll see. The last lap was brutal but in a way the easiest as I got lost in a bit of a fog and just staggered on. No real sign of THE WALL, which was a relief, tho I'm sure I'll find it somewhere :). The whole thing was a bit of a wall.

I felt better afterwards than last week, walked a bit, got a muffin and snowcone, wiped crusted salt off my face and arms (I hate that part) and came home. It hurt big time to pay the sitter $100 for the 6 hours with my two kids, but they had a great time and it was the only option. Just two more really long ones and then the taper off period! I definitely need new shoes asap, I see the wear on them and can feel the loss of cushioning. Off to see if there are any new pairs on ebay :)

Training update ... week 10

I'm on week 10 of my 17-week training, and am finding it challenging every single week. The first 8 weeks were for building endurance, and so I was doing long slow (10:50/m) runs every saturday, and 1/4 mile intervals on Wednesdays, with short jogs and biking filling in most other days. The intervals were the hardest, as it was 1/4 miles in 1:50 and a short rest, over and over, leaving me winded and not able to get in a zone of any kind. I love the zone :). The long runs were hard too, but in a very different way. I love running in the country, in different cities, finding new towns and tracks and just plain being alone for several hours, lost in my head. I planned renovations, talked to God, brainstormed problems, wrote imaginary blog posts that never got typed out, argued with my legs and my lungs, watched for roadkill and weird trash and oblivious cars, and just plain enjoyed myself.

Last week I started the Endurance phase of my training, meaning the long runs continue to get longer (19.5 last weekend in 99% humidity!) and my Wednesday are now "tempo runs" as they're run at an 8:45 pace which is faster than my target of 9:00 miles for Marathon day. If I reach that goal I'll clock a 4 hour marathon. The 8:45 pace is hard to keep up for me for now, but part of it is getting enough rest. This is very hard to do while keeping track of 2 small boys, single parenting (temporarily), moving between states, emptying rooms and rearranging so we can take in a subletter again, prepping for a big show next month in another state, etc ... things I can't walk away from just to train. I'm not a professional runner, so this has to fit into my life, not take it over. That balance becomes a bit dubious as I get closer to race day. I had to hire a sitter for 6 hours this Saturday so I can leave at 6am for Central Park, go stretch and run 21 miles, and hobble home again via the subway.

I reached my goal!

Thanks to all of you fabulous people, I reached my goal of raising $3000 ... in TWO DAYS! I had gotten a few donations before that from friends who already knew what I was up to, but once I sent out an email it took only two days! Utterly amazing. Thank you all so very much. Now on to worrying about the running itself. I have to worry about something, right?!


To all those who have already donated, I'm so very very thankful. Once I finally worked up the courage to send the emails, you all have responded and amazed me. I'm halfway to my goal of $3000 already, and in just 2 days :). Thank you and thank God. Have a great weekend!

new milestone

on the weekend i hit the 17 mile mark, and boy was it tough! i'd driven 8 hours the day before, didn't sleep all that well, ate too much cheese and sugar with dinner, and headed down a road whose hill factor was unknown. the entire route was rolling hills, and i left later than i wanted. thankfully the sun stayed hidden for the majority of the time. i was almost staggering by the time i was done. i had to drive 8 hours the next day too. i felt the soreness even in yesterdays interval run, which was 4 days later. thankfully i only have to do 10 this weekend, a light one!


i was sick w/a cold last weekend and so shortened my long run a bit. i leave today for PA, and will do my 17 miles there tomorrow morning. i'm rather nervous about it, given i'll spend a good 8 hours in the car today driving. and had little sleep last night. we shall see!

quick update

well, things are moving along! fundraising links are up (see left bar ... thanks!), and I'm slowly working up the nerve to email folks and ask for support.

I'm also running full tilt. I'm currently in week 5 of the Four Months to a Four Hour Marathon schedule that I'm following, and am SO glad to have a schedule to follow. It makes it easy to crack open the book stashed on the back of the toilet, and see what I'm supposed to do the next day. I'm finding the long runs (11 min miles for now, per the schedule) fun and quite do-able, and the intervals still a challenge. that's probably because they take a lot less actual time, so i treat them like an easier workout and tend to stay up too late the night before. 11 weeks to go, i can give up some late nights for that long!

i finally bought a hip belt/water bottle holder as my runs here in MA don't go by any public water (unless you want me to stop and dip in the river) and the runs are too long to go without. i've carried a bottle the last 2 times, but hate the distraction. i haven't run w/the belt yet, and will likely find it a bit sweaty, but it should be worth it.

the best run of the last month was 3 weekends ago when i was in philly for the weekend with some girlfriends to hit the amazing Plant/Krauss concert tour. i got up early on saturday, having hit for routes, and jogged about 1.5 miles thru college neighborhoods, over the Schulykill river and then up the path along the river, starting at the Art Museum. Beautiful, relaxing, lots of sculling crews as well as other runners, and so little traffic that the exhaust wasn't an issue at all. I was disappointed that my run wasn't more than 9 miles, and ran further than I had to before turning back so I could see more.

I have a couple training challenges coming up, as we leave tomorrow to go camping w/my family for a few days, and then the boys/I will be staying in chicago for almost a week afterwards. that means I have an 8-miler (every 5th week is easier!) this saturday, and a 15 miler the following weekend. I'm hoping to run the Great Western Trail that is a rails-to-trails path so it's much easier on the legs than asphalt. I'd rather run the lakefront for a distance like that, but it's hotter down there and would take me over an hour to get to the starting point. We'll see. Either way, it's nice to run in new places. I'm finding the hills here to be great for my stamina, and M swears that all the cellulite has disappeared from my legs :). I'll take that gladly as a side-effect!

back on track

just as i was starting 'serious marathon training' thanks to Four Months to a Four Hour marathon, i got sick. yay me. took 3 days off, and started up slowly yesterday. did my first set of intervals today (1/4 mile speed workouts, over and over) and surely felt them! still waiting on info from worldvision, and getting itchy to start raising money! have one check already thanks to some dear friends, and am about 1/22nd of the way there :). Progress!

breathing update

as I noted in my 10k post, I've started breathing only through my nose when running, unless it's the last little bit of a long run or race. it's working amazingly well, keeps me very self-aware of my body, and also helps me slip into 'the zone' a lot faster. and stay there! so much of my motivation challenge is the brain-chatter, and quieting it seems difficult. i've never really tried meditation, which my landlord suggested today as it's his favorite way to talk to God. i do pray sometimes when running, and it helps get my mind away from 'stuff' but it inevitably heads back that direction.

so far so good! and i've also stopped wearing my ankle brace some of the time, and it feels like it's making it stronger on it's own. one less thing to wear!

I'm shaking ....

... and I'm IN!!!!!
"We are thrilled to welcome you to Team World Vision at the NYC marathon."
This scares me witless, and leaves me standing on faith and faith alone. This requires me to pay a $525 late fee, and then raise $5000 dollars for WorldVision by November 1st! Hence the shaking.

I won't have the donation buttons and so on for a few weeks, but in the meantime, prayers appreciated!

This means I've written to take myself off the Hole in the Wall waiting list, and yes I'd changed my mind and applied to WorldVision instead. I have so much more interest in raising money for humanitarian causes than anything else.

"Who Is World Vision? World Vision is a Christian humanitarian organization dedicated to working with children, families and their communities worldwide to reach their full potential by tackling the causes of poverty and injustice."

marathon update

I've applied to Team Hole in the Wall to get guaranteed entry through their charity. It's founded by Paul Newman, and they host free camps for kids with medical/health issues. I think it's a great cause, and would be happy to help raise money for them. Even if it means raising $3000, which it does.

My application was responded to with this ...
"You are now #11 on our wait list and we are hoping to get everyone off the wait list by the end of this week or the beginning of next week. We will definitely let you know as soon as we know!"
I so hope it works out! My 2nd choice is World Vision, which would be #1 if it weren't for the $5575 I'd need to raise ... whew.

NYRR Mini 10k

I ran this last weekend in the HEAT, and had the best race ever! For one, it had a crowd of professional women that I respect leading the pack (Olympians and all!) It was under 5,000 women, and that's women only. Great way to race! I felt good the whole way, tho I started at the back as the woman I went with (another runner from my 'hood who races with me sometimes) had to use the bathroom last minute and we didn't get in our corral in time. I had to weave/bob the first 4 miles, and finally found my group/pace for the last 2. There were sprinklers, enough water stations, and patches of shade for sanity's sake. It didn't start till 9am, and the fog was burned off and humidity rampant by then.

The biggest/best thing about the race, aside from it being all women which I loved, was that I tried something new with my breathing. I was concerned about hydration and body temp, given the heat, so I only breathed thru my mouth for the first 4.5 miles. I used that to regulate my pace, and it worked wonderfully, and kept me extremely relaxed and centered. I let myself 'go' at close to 5 miles, and used up everything I had for the finish, sprinting as best I could for the last 1/4 mile. It felt wonderful!

I had a very sore abdomen on Sunday night, and I don't doubt it was from breathing that way. Then at the gym yesterday, a woman showed me how to do 'the plank' and I did 2 min before she told me to rest, apparently that's pretty great for a first try. It's a core exercise, and I could feel it in the same muscles I'd used to control my breathing and pace. That's actually when I realized my sore stomach was from the race. I've always tried to run from my 'core' and I'm finally getting the hang of some of it.

Oh, my time? 57:46, which I was pretty happy with given the heat, I think it's my best 10k time to date..


keeping up my running motivation is hard ... i feel like i've slipped since the half marathon, and have to be ready to start serious training at the beginning of next month. Only 4 3/4 months to the marathon! I should be doing 25 miles a week by the time this month wraps up, and fitting it in to my hectic get-ready-to-move-out-of-state-for-only-two-months-while-subletting schedule is a challenge. I did do 6 miles this morning, 3 yesterday, and 10 last Sunday, so that's 19 for the week so far! I have a 6 mile race on Saturday, and hope to do 3-4 at the gym tomorrow, or else swim a bunch (probably smarter). That makes at least 28, so not bad!

We're moving to North-west MA for the summer, so 2 months of hill training should give me thick thighs, right?! We'll see! I have to say I'm not so bummed by tank tops this year, I feel a lot more comfortable in them and less twiggy ... my arms are more toned than last summer even though I've only been to the gym sporadically.

finding I have to get distracted in order to run in 'the zone' and that the distraction has to vary constantly. once I get lost in my thoughts i'm golden, I forget to think about how I feel.

First Half!

I ran, I felt great, I enjoyed to the hilt, and I did well but not stunningly in my first half marathon this morning! Coney Island boardwalk, Ocean Blvd, and Prospect Park ... and lots of energy for a really strong finish. I wish I'd pushed harder of course :). Time of 2:07:22 and that included a 3 min pit-stop thanks to lines. I need to figure out how to eliminate stops but it's pretty hard!

I'm exhausted, going to soak and go to bed.