You are currently browsing the monthly archive for January 2010.
So January has come and gone already, and my training has really kicked in. I am currently starting week 9 of my marathon training and am running 20+ miles a week. I hit a rough patch this month but have worked my way through it and came out stronger and with a better understanding of myself and my abilities. So I can’t complain.
January 2010 in review
Total miles run: 92.56 miles
I struggled a little this week getting back into the swing of things, and getting my training schedule straightened out. I switched the weekday system so I didn’t have set runs, just a mileage goal. But when I tried it, I didn’t really like that system. So I went back to scheduled runs and it seems to be going alright.
I also stopped using the Podrunner BPM mixes FOR NOW. Not because I don’t like them (I LOVE them). But because that’s all I was using and I was getting in a running music rut and I think it was making me bored. So I’m making fun playlists with music that makes me happy, and just enjoying it when I run.
I also read The Complete Book of Running for Women (Claire Kowalchik) and really enjoyed it. For my runs this week I focused on my breathing (3:2 and 2:1 patterns) and posture. I tend to get hunched over with my butt sticking out and arms swinging across my body when I get tired. And that makes it even harder to run, so then I get more tired.
I also decided to not do the WHOLE P90X program during my marathon training. I think that was another thing that was making me burn out. I wasn’t actually DOING the program yet, but the thought of doing a run (anywhere from 30 minutes to 2+ hours) AND another 60-90 minute workout was making me dread doing either. So instead I’m going to use the videos for my strength training on non-running days. I’ll do the actual P90X program after my marathon is over and then I can really see what it’s like! I’m really looking forward to it, but right now it’s just too much to do all at once.
Monday – Rest day.
Tuesday – 3.03 miles outside (hooray!). I brought my running stuff with me to work and ran around campus and downtown. It was nice to get back outside! I didn’t worry about my pace or where I was going. I just ran and let myself enjoy it. This was my first day back after taking my mental health break.
Wednesday – P90X Plyometrics – this time I got all the way through!
Thursday – 6.04 miles on the treadmill (1.5% incline) in 1:05:06 (10:47/mile). Felt good, and was happy with myself for getting back into things.
Friday – Rest day.
Saturday – Went to yoga with my friend and LOVED IT!!
Sunday – 13.12 miles on the treadmill (1.5% incline) in 2:27:21 (11:14/mile). It was AWESOME! I had the best runners high ever. My legs were fluid, everything was effortless! (I might still be on that runners high.) I decided to skip the music this time and watch a Friends DVD. I got through the entire first disc of season one and it was exactly the same length as my run (perfect!). I really liked having that to watch as I ran and actually found myself laughing and enjoying the shows to the point that I didn’t even notice I was running. I think I’ll be doing that on my long runs from now on. This will be my chance to watch the entire series all the way through and in the right order. Yes, I am a nerd.
Okay, I have a couple new food crushes. All of them are GREAT sources of protein, which has been a big focus of mine since I’ve transitioned to eating vegetarian.
Soy beans! They look like lima beans, but taste WONDERFUL! An excellent source of protein, and are absolutely delicious mixed in with pretty much anything (my favorite being tofu and quinoa). They’re also excellent as a snack just by themselves. I find them in the natural foods section of our grocery store.
#2) Nasoya Extra Firm Tofu
I can’t get enough tofu! I love pressing and then sauteing it so the outside is browned and crispy and then mixing it in with pad thai or quinoa and edamame (with sesame oil and tamari).
I recently ordered a tofu press from Tofu Xpress and CAN NOT WAIT until it gets here. They’ve had so much demand for these that they’re on back order until the second week of February, but as soon as I get it, I’ll be pressing tofu left and right and write up a review. Until then, here’s a good one!
#3) Quinoa (KEEN-wa)
A great protein-rich grain that looks a lot like couscous but is a little bigger. It doesn’t have much taste by itself, but it’s delicious when you mix in a little sauce (tamari is great) or chopped up veggies.
Here’s a delicious looking quinoa recipe I want to try!
I’m a little late in posting this, but here it is!
Monday – No workout today. Mondays are my day off. I also really wanted to let my knee rest after that monster 13.1 miler from the day before. Today I went and purchased “The Complete Book of Running for Women” by Claire Kowalchik. Looking forward to reading it!
Tuesday – Since tonight was a short run, I decided to push myself to increase my pace. I did 4.02 miles on the treadmill (1.5% incline) in 38:56 (9:40/mile). Hooray! I got my sub-10:00/mile! I definitely felt like I was pushing myself harder than I normally do on my runs. But it was a good push. Still having trouble fitting in my P90X (running plus at least an hour of other working out is a LOT to fit in), but it’s trial-and-error and I will work it out.
Wednesday – I tried to run tonight. I put on my running clothes and shoes and went down to the treadmill. I got about 1/4 of a mile in and just DID NOT WANT TO RUN ANYMORE. So I decided to listen to my body and take a few days off. I was burned out and tired and my body needed a break.
Thursday – Rest day.
Friday – Rest day.
Saturday – Rest day. By now, I was actually starting to look forward to picking back up.
Sunday – Rest day.
I’ve had a very rough time these past two weeks, but I think I’m coming out of it with a better understanding of myself and my limitations.
I am a perfectionist and a control freak and I always have to be the best at EVERYTHING. I am a competitive person – even if it is against myself. I don’t ever want to admit that I might not be awesome at something. This was also the case with my marathon training.
I used to run cross country when I was in high school, and since then, I continued with sports through college, grad school, and my adult life. So I never really lost my athletic ability or got very out of shape. After recovering from my broken ankle, I decided to dive back into running and racing. Before then, I would run, but it was just for fun, and usually with my dog.
So I did what many runners do. I went out and ran until I hit the wall – to see what I could do. I ended up doing about 5.5 miles. Which wasn’t bad considering until then I would only run about 3 miles at a time, maybe once or twice a week. I was lucky that I didn’t get injured from jumping headfirst into running. I consider myself fortunate for that.
After signing up for my first marathon, I needed to pick a training schedule. Hal Higdon’s training plans were highly recommended, so I put all the distances for his Novice I plan on my calendar and had at it.
About three weeks in, I was feeling great. The runs were easy – even the long ones – and I felt like I could do more. So, being the overachiever I am, I decided to switch my training plan to his Intermediate I plan.
It’s important to note, that Hal Higdon’s Novice plan is for people who are training for their first marathon and just need to make sure they can get through the distance (that’s me). Intermediate is more for those who are on their second or third marathon and know they can do the distance and are now working more on time (not me).
So I did the Intermediate I plan for about four weeks. At week seven of my training, I was burned out. I wasn’t looking forward to my runs anymore. I was tired and grumpy and it just wasn’t fun anymore. I started skipping runs (short ones only – I didn’t miss my long ones) and telling myself I would make it up the following day. Which I never did. Well, maybe once.
So this week I took Wednesday to Saturday off. I told myself that I was going to rest and recouperate and not let myself feel guilty about it. I wasn’t going to try to “make it up” another day. And during this time I was going to try to listen to my body and figure out why I was feeling the way I was.
I decided to be honest with myself and admitted that I was overreaching with my training. As much as I don’t like to admit when I am a novice at something, I AM A NOVICE MARATHONER. I have never run a marathon before. I have never raced more than a 5k (that will change this spring). And the last race I did was in 10th grade (which will also change soon). Although it may PHYSICALLY be within my ability to follow the Intermediate I training plan, it is not in my best interest (mentally and physically). By trying to follow that plan, I am risking burnout, fatigue, and overuse injuries.
So I switched my training plan back to the Novice I, and since doing so, I feel much less stress and pressure. I will still get through the race, and I don’t need to make myself miserable in doing so.
I have three goals for my first marathon (in this order)…
- Without walking
- Under 5 hours
That’s it. If I can finish, I’ll be happy. If I can finish without walking (I see that as very do-able), I’ll be very happy. If I can finish without walking under 5 hours (also do-able), I’ll be THRILLED.
Maybe I’ll try the Intermediate I plan for my next marathon. Until then, I just want to make sure I can do the distance.
Monday – No run today. Mondays are my day off. Instead I worked around the house like a crazy person, so that was kind of like a partial workout.
Tuesday – 4 miles on the treadmill (1.5% incline) in 41:34 (10:20 min/mile pace). I was foolish and tried to go out faster than I could handle (~ 9:00 min/mile). At about mile 2, my knees stiffened up and I ran out of gas. So I slowed it down and finished out my 4 miles for the day. Mental note – don’t go out that fast yet! I attempted to do my run during the day while my husband was at work, but the puppy FREAKED OUT so I had to wait until he got home. Because of this, I wasn’t able to do my P90X plyometrics later that night (see previous P90X Plyo post). I guess I’ll have to YET AGAIN, shift it back a day. That’s alright. It’s a learning experience with the dog. I don’t know how he’s going to handle different situations yet.
Wednesday – 5 miles on the treadmill (1.5% incline). I’m not even going to post the time because it was so slow. For some reason, it was just an AWFUL run. I was sluggish, tired, achy, tight muscles… all that fun stuff. I couldn’t get into a rhythm or get comfortable at all. I pushed through it, but there were SO MANY times I wanted to just stop. I tried to get my mind somewhere else, but just couldn’t do it. There’s been runs where I’ve been tired and achy and managed to get past it eventually, but today I lost the mental battle and just plugged through it. Once again, I could not get the P90X stuff in with the dogs around me all day and night. This is going to be interesting carving out time for it. It will be much easier once my husband is mobile again. Which is in THREE WEEKS. ACK.
Thursday – I decided to take tonight off and rest. I’ve been so exhausted lately and I think that has a lot to do with how crappy my last two runs have been. Between taking care of gimpy and the dogs and running, I’m beat. Thursday was time for some R&R.
Friday – No run tonight. Fridays are my other night off. Instead I went to my BFF’s (haha) house and made jewelry, ate cookies, and worked on our wedding albums. All in all, a good night.
Saturday – Spent the night up to my elbows in wedding pictures, DVDs (burning copies of the pictures for people), and photo paper. Didn’t get done with that little project until well after 10pm and was in no mood to go down to the basement after that. This has been a pretty off week. I suppose they happen, and I’m not going to beat myself up about it. I think I needed a little mental (and physical!) break. We’ll see if this helps for my long run tomorrow.
Sunday – 1.97 miles with the puppy in 21:56 (11:07/mile). Granted, that’s including the sniffing and bathroom stops, so our pace was probably closer to 10 min/mile.
Later that night, I did my scheduled run of 13.12 miles on the treadmill (1.5% incline) in 2:20:58 (10:44 min/mile). Wohoo! This was my first “half marathon” and I am so proud of myself. I’m really glad I took the last two days off because I definitely needed a mental and physical break. It wasn’t all good though. Around mile 7, my IT band got REALLY uncomfortable and started to make my whole leg ache up to my hip. From then until the end of my run I had to stop every mile (and near the end, every half mile!) to massage it for about 30 seconds. It was ROUGH. But I made it.
I feel so blah these past several days. I think a lot of it has to do with being stuck around the house and taking care of everybody. I’m not complaining – I’m very glad my husband got his knee fixed, and I love the dogs. It just takes its toll after a while.
The problem is, when I feel like crap, I eat like crap. I automatically revert back to my toast with peanut butter phase where that’s all I eat for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. And the more I do that, the worse I feel. It’s a vicious cycle. And it’s not a thin little layer of peanut butter. We’re taking a big, thick layer of LOTS of peanut butter. Gross. But sooooooo good.
I did attempt to actually cook a dinner tonight. I wanted to use up the veggies we had sitting around so I made spaghetti squash with roasted butternut squash, onions, garlic, red and green peppers, and feta cheese. It turned out just so-so. Not horrible, but it was definitely missing something. It was a little bland. Also, I have definitely not figured out how to peel a butternut squash because it took forever and I didn’t get it fully peeled so some pieces were a little tough. All in all, not my best cooking. But it was a valiant effort.
To go along with all this, I decided to not do my 4 miler tonight. missing a short little 4 miler won’t hurt me in my training, and I really needed a day off from running. I’m exhausted, and also mentally frustrated becuase the last two runs I’ve had (Tuesday and Wednesday) were pretty bad. I really had to push through them. I know the mental battle won’t go away without just running through it, but at least I can rest a little and get some more energy so I can have good long runs this weekend.
I think my brain and body have just atrophied during my vacation. I love teaching at a college, and I love the time off, but I get really, really lazy near the end of my breaks. It’s hard to snap out of it. And I still have another week and a half to go. Although, there’s a lot of things I need to prep for this coming semester, so it’s not really all free time.
So I pose this question to all of you out there…
What do you do when you get in a funk? How do you get yourself out of it?
So there’s been all sorts of updates around here. Since starting on this blog, I’ve really enjoyed putting things together. There’s a bunch of new stuff around here, so here’s a quick update!
2010 Blog Challenge:
For every comment you all make during 2010, I’ll donate a canned good to a local food bank. Keep track with the counter in the upper left of the page!
Post and Page Ratings:
Love a post or page? Hate it? Help me develop my blog by rating posts and pages! To rate a page, just give it a star rating (located right underneath the title). To rate a post, click on the post title. That will take you to the individual post, where you can give it a star rating.
2010 Running Log:
Keep track of your running (or biking!) mileage for 2010. Follow the link at the top of the page to take you to the Google Doc. You can save it to your computer and update it as you go!
101 in 1001 List:
I’ll be updating my progress on my 101 in 1001 list as I go. Follow the link at the top of the page to see how it’s going!
Races, Results, and Training:
Follow the link at the top of the page to check out scheduled races, how they went, and my training schedule.
My Project 365:
Document a year in your life by taking a picture a day! Follow the link at the top of the page to see how my Project 365 is going. (Here’s a hint – lots of dog pictures so far!)
My Wish List:
Things I’ve got my eyes on. These are usually things that I’ve heard great things about and REALLY REALLY want to get. Follow the link at the top of the page to check it out.
My Favorite Recipes:
Follow the link at the top of the page to get links to my favorite (and most successful!) recipes!
After 142 days of waiting, I received our wedding pictures tonight.
They are FABULOUS!
Our photographer was absolutely AMAZING and wonderful and sweet. And I am SO GLAD we had her as a part of our wedding.
The reason the turn around time is so long is because she goes through every single picture individually, edits them, and does all sorts of nifty artistic touches to the really good ones. So I waited 142 days (12,268,800 seconds), and it was worth every single one.
Now I have to figure out which of the 2,859 pictures to put in our album! Yes, you read that right. We got 2,859 pictures from her. That’s 4 DVDs worth.