Wednesday, April 30, 2014

April stats

I started April with a stomach bug so I wasn't sure how it was going to go but I'm pretty pleased with the results. I didn't do much running (or much of anything) during our spring break but it was right before the Dodge the Deer race so I was okay with that. I've managed to fit my runs in around all the crazy school stuff and demands of children who want attention. I did not do so well with the cross training, but I'm not sweating it. 


Mileage: 70
Runs: 15
Races: 1 Dodge the Deer
Crosstraining days: 6 (eek!)

It's a giant improvement from last month's 48.8 and last April's 52.5. 

As I was running today I listened to the Another Mother Runner podcast about Time Management and how we always say we don't have enough time when really we do. I know I squander huge amounts of time… but I don't really think of it as squandering. We don't have to be "busy" to be valuable. It's okay to have the time to sit down and read a book or check Facebook/twitter or just watch TV. It was a really good podcast. As a "stay at home" mom I often feel like I am slacking if I'm not making things really hard for myself, but I'm not slacking. I am enjoying my freedom for as long as I can and if that means saying no to some things so I can have that blank space on my calendar, then so be it. Ironically as I am posting about this I really need to shower and get the laundry out of the dryer and think about dinner and Lightrunner has just woken up from his nap. I also have to mentally prepare myself for Chewie's Kindergarten screening tomorrow. That'll take the most time.

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Wildcats Marathon

In addition to races, the kids have been doing a lot of running lately. We know this because we're keeping track for the school's first marathon. It's not a traditional marathon but it's an awesome idea. The kids from Kindergarten through high school (and their families too) run 25 miles over the course of 6-7 weeks. They can run any distance, they can run/walk, they can do every day or just a few days as long as it all adds up to at least 25. On the last day all of the participants will get together and run the last 1.2 miles.

They earn a wristband for finishing the marathon as well as other prizes (most miles, age awards). Most importantly they are given a taste of the joy of running and the opportunity to get their families involved. I've signed up SkyWalker and the Princess. I thought about signing up Chewie as well but I think I'll wait until next year when she is in kindergarten. I could sign up too but I already run plenty and I want this to be the kids' "thing." So far we've all run together at the park, they've run on the treadmill, and they've run by themselves in the backyard while wearing my Garmin. 

My school also has a running group for 4th grade and up that gets together to train for a local 5K. It's a great idea, but they meet at 5:30 in the morning. We're not doing that. So we jumped at this opportunity that's open to all grades and is very easy to fit into our schedule (provided it doesn't rain or snow for the next month). The gym class also does something called the stick run in which the kids run a designated route outside and collect "sticks" as they pass the gym teachers. The sticks tell them how far they've run. The kids love to compete for the highest numbers of sticks and they get really excited about it. I WISH I had been excited about anything in gym class when I was that age. Anyway, all the running they do for this will also count for their marathon logs. Awesome. 

I hope it's a successful program and I'm glad my kids are a part of its inaugural year. 

Monday, April 21, 2014


Five out of six of us ran a race this past Saturday. We got there later than I wanted to because what else is new? I said I wanted to leave a particular time and Vader sat in front of the computer. I wound up having to wrestle Lightrunner to get him dressed and we ran out the door 10 minutes later than I wanted. We live very close but I like to have time to park and get our bibs. Chewie's sprint was first so she and I got out of the car before Vader parked and ran to get her bib. We got to the starting line just in time and she ran her 200 meters. As she said she "didn't come in first" but she smiled an awful lot.

Next SkyWalker and the Princess had their 1 mile run. Vader ran with the Princess and SkyWalker ran ahead. He said he had to stop and walk but then the Princess's friend ran past him and that motivated him again so he started back up. He finished in 10:16 which really isn't bad for a lazy kid. Vader and the Princess came in after him at 12:05. They all enjoyed it.

It turned out to be a great day, not cloudy or raining at all. The sun was nice, the temperature was nice and it was an overall beautiful day. When the kids finished their race they had to leave for Chewie's first soccer practice so I was on my own for the 5K. Luckily I had a gazillion friends running it.

Last year when I ran this race I was shooting for the 28 minute range and I finished in 28:26 and I was pretty happy because I felt like I had given it my all. I ran hard and did the best I could do. This year I was aiming for 28:00 again and finished in 28:32. I did not run really hard and did not give it my all and I am still pretty happy. I'll be honest when I saw the clock I thought "really? again?". But this wasn't my goal race, I didn't want to go all out and really when I think about it I did exactly what I set out to do.
First race with the Bia. Slightly off but nothing to complain about.

I wanted to use this race to see where I am right now and what else I have to do in the next 2 weeks before my goal race. The entire time I was running I was breathing fine, I was feeling fine, and I could see my friends just up ahead. My mile splits were 9:14, 9:16 and 9:17. I kind of did the tempo run I've been trying to do for months. I was definitely not running at 100% and I'm actually pretty happy that I ran so consistently because I usually don't. 

Wearing my Strong Running Mama shirt.
So grateful for friends taking pictures!

The last tenth of a mile I ran really REALLY strong. I actually wound up passing the friends I was following. I could hear people yelling my name which was really nice and is one of the many benefits to running a race in your own community. I was completely focused though because I wanted to come in as strong as possible. I was totally excited that I had that final kick because I haven't had in a while. If I had started it just a bit sooner I could have finished closer to 28. 

Because I love to laugh at myself. Belly.

I am pretty confident that if I could do a sandy trail run at 80% effort and come close to my goal that I can do what I want to do for my next race. And then maybe actually earn the "Badassery" label from Bia!

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Dodging those damn deer again

In two days I will run my first race since the half marathon in October. All of the jedi, with the exception of the youngest, will be racing. Chewie will do the kids sprint, Skywalker, the Princess & Vader are doing the one mile and then I am doing the 5K. Unfortunately, Chewie has soccer practice at the same time as the 5K, so they will run and Vader will take them to practice. I will either run home or hopefully catch a ride with friends. Or maybe stay and wait for Vader to pick me up.

It will once again be on the chillier side. Last weekend was sunny and warm and beautiful. Race weekend will be chilly & probably include rain. Awesome.

I've thought long and hard about what I want to do for this race. My "goal" race is in 2 weeks so I don't want to go all out. I've been putting the miles in and doing my speedwork but I haven't quite been feeling as energetic as I could be. I'm not going to stress out when I have another race in 2 weeks (and a Ragnar after that!). I want to push myself … but only so much.

C. Beat my last time for this race: 28:26
B. 28:00
A. Find the joy in the run again.

If by some odd chance I manage to beat my overall PR (27:35), yipee. But I'm not focusing on that. I really just want that runner's high again.

Whatever happens, the day is sure to be a good one. I'll be racing with my new Bia watch (review on that coming soon), my kids are running, and the best part is we'll be having our good friends over for dinner. You can't beat friends and pizza after a race!

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

March stats and milestones

Like I said, March wasn't the best for me. But it wasn't the worst for me either. I had good speedwork sessions, long runs with friends, and I ran a mile with SkyWalker.


Mileage: 48.8
Runs: 10
Cross training Days: 12

I did lots of good cross training routines. I joined a forum on Jessica Smith's website for extra accountability.

I've switched my speedwork to traditional intervals instead of the fast 30 second pickups. I did fast quarters and tomorrow I will do half-mile repeats. I'll get up to mile repeats before my goal race in May. I've failed miserably at the tempo runs and discovered that they were actually causing me more stress than they were worth. I've also had a hard time with my long runs, feeling like I just have no energy and am dragging through the whole thing. So I decided to focus on the intervals and drop the tempo run. I think I need more easy runs and less stressful ones… I might replace the tempo run with some (treadmill) hill runs or just keep it easy. My "tune-up" race is in just a couple of weeks so I'll see where I am then and re-evaluate.

While on my last long run, I passed 700 miles on my Dash Gloves. The beauty of minimalist shoes, no cushioning to break down means no reason to buy another pair until they start falling apart. So far, so good:

Taken right at the 700 mile mark.

I'm hoping April is a bit better and I can get some stroller runs done. Running outside--even with a stroller--is so much better than the treadmill. I am grateful for it and the week I couldn't use it sucked, but it just doesn't compare to outside.