Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Rah rah sis boom bah!

I am trying to motivate myself to get my bootie downstairs to run while my hubby is at the gym and Emma is asleep. So far I have checked Facebook and now I am on to blogs!

So I have found two more 1/2 marathons to try. One is in October and the other November. The one in October is near and dear to me because it is in my hometown. I mean my parents could practically step out their front door and watch me run by. The only downfall with this one is that it is SO HILLY!!! I'm not a whiner but New England is just hill
y! I would love to do this one! My family is the best group of cheerleaders! I have been involved in sports since I could put one foot in front of the other which means my parents and sister have attended everything from gymnastic meets to weekend long softball tournaments. My biggest sport was softball and the experiences I have had through it with my family will be ones that I always treasure! When I ran Boston they even put a huge sign on the front lawn that said "Way to Go Nancy!" On a funny note, my Mom is the best example of unconditional support. She would
ys be the loudest cheerer no matter the sport even when she really didn't know anything about the sport. She knew a lot about softball since my sister and I played and my Dad coached but she didn't know too much about soccer. That didn't get her down though...I can remember in high school laughing to myself on the field as I heard my Mom yell out, "Run!" because that was what she knew! Now I live way too far for my liking away from my family (2 hours). It would mean so much to me to have my Mom yelling "Run!" at me during the race!! Plus the last half they came to they suffered through wicked cold weather just to surprise me at the finish and didn't see me run by!

Ok so enough procrastinating! My timer went off! I have to get the run in so I can relax and watch Glee!

Sunday, September 27, 2009

1/2 Marathon Race Report

Well there would be no PR this time.....UGH!!! I do have to say though that it was an absolutely perfect day to run and Jill and I did have a great time running! I love running with her because we don't see each other in the week so we have nice long runs to catch up! Plus Jill is faster than my body wants to be so it pushes me to run faster!

The race started at 7am...pretty early I thought and it was only about 45 degrees...cold but nice and crisp to run in! I wore my "run like a mother" shirt...can't seem to get my picture up so that will have to come later. I had a lot of friends running this race and some people too that I knew that I wanted to make sure I beat (people from my gym) so it was nice to see everyone. The start was great and we ran our first mile in about 8:15. We continued that pace for about 3/4 of the race. We even did pick-ups for a few miles just to get them done with. Then my body just pooped out!!! UGH! I was so close to doing it in under 2 hours!!! I lost it in the last 3 miles really. I finished in close yet not there! I had a nice surprise at the finish though with the hubs and Emma waiting for me! Two of my friends finished in well under 2 hours (way to go to them) Jill finished just before me, and another friend ran her first half and was psyched to finish!

I am happy to have ran it well considering I was so hopped up on cold medication at the start! It inconveniently wore off around mile 9! It is just that I am so close I can taste it! I keep playing the race over in my head wondering where I could have done more...Plus I can't help but wonder if I could find a flat half it would be different. There were about 4 major hills and a lot of little ones. I am convinced there isn't a flat town in New England!

So you all are some of the fastest people I know....I need your advice! You have seen my training...what can I do to be faster? I do 2 tempo runs, a easy run, and a long run. I should do speed work but maybe someone can explain to me what that is really. I need help!!! I have found another half in my hometown of Middletown and Newport, RI in October. What a better one to hit my goal than in front of my whole family! I love running there makes me feel like I am home again! I am constantly homesick so I love to visit my fam and go running! Can't you see it now?! So yes any advice will be well taken!

Friday, September 25, 2009

Back in Love

I was thinking today as I drove to work that I think that I am back in love with running. Now for many of you this may seem weird that I was ever out of love with running since I have been training for a half-marathon (which is tomorrow) for about 5 months. Let me please explain....

A few years ago one of my best friends and I decided we were going to run the Boston Marathon. She had never run more than 1 mile while I had already been running for about 10 years or so. She was in shape but running was new to her. We had a blast training for the marathon. There were three of us training and we really had fun with it considering we trained through a very cold New England winter. The only struggle I began to feel as the long runs got longer was that my pace was significantly faster than my partners. I would run ahead and then wait until they caught up. Doing this at 20 miles became difficult but we were all having fun!

Fast forward to the day before the marathon. We had a long talk about pace and decided that we would start together but we would use walkie talkies to help us talk if we got separated. Even though there was a Nor'easter that day we had high hopes for the race. We stayed together for 9 miles during which my partner stopped 3 times. Knowing that I wouldn't make it if I kept stopping with her I decided to go ahead. Plus I just couldn't resister trying to beat some of the other runners. After about 13 miles I lost touch with my two partners and was on my own. I had a great time running and felt so accomplished at the end even though my time was slow. I waited at the finish line for 45 minutes waiting for the other two to finish. When they crossed we hugged and then my "best" friend turned around and has never spoken to me again.

In the months that followed, I heard it was because I had left her that she was mad at me. It was so silly since we had been friends for so long. However, she made it so uncomfortable I had to change gyms and find all new running routes. The last time I ran the Wicked Half (the race I am running tomorrow) I was very much out of love with running. The whole loss of friendships just made me so sad and even more so I had lost my love of running which was even more devastating! Soon after I became pregnant and I was not able to run most of the time. This gave me a much needed break.

Now tonight, on the day before the same 1/2 marathon, I am finding that I am again in love with running! It is my solace. It is my stress relief. It really is my therapy...where I find me! I cannot tell you how gitty I am now that I am back in love with my old friend running! It is like finding myself all over again!

Are you in love with running?

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Goals for 98 days

Mel over at Tall Mom blogged about her goals for the rest of 2009. I can't believe that there are only 98 days left!!! It got me really thinking hard about what else I wanted to accomplish this year. I mean this year I became a not much is going to top that! Mel is so close to reaching her 1000 mile goal for the year which is just amazing!!! Here are my 3 goals for the next 98 days....

1. Run a sub 2 hour 1/2 marathon....Since I have come down with a cold that won't quit I'm not sure it will happen this weekend but I am determined to do it this year! I have another one planned this November. I'm still going to try to do it this weekend but it is good to know that I have another one to try for!

2. Enjoy life...within the 98 days my little nugget Emma will turn 1 year-old. This just blows me away! Everyone tells you that it goes by so fast but I guess I never knew just how fast it would go by. Now that I am back to work it is just flying! I want to make that within these next 98 days I make time for joy and family. This will take a lot of organization on my part but it is so worth it!

3. Lose the last of the baby weight and then some...I am down to 2 more pounds to get to prebaby weight but I am shooting for 10lbs total. I read in Runner's World that you gain about 5 seconds for each pound you use. This could get me to reach my first goal.

Ok friends with just 98 days left....What are your goals left for 2009?

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

I hate you immune system!!! can't say I'm surprised that I am coming down with something that makes me feel horrible...I'm a teacher which basically means I work in a giant pietre dish with nose pickers! Also I have not been getting much sleep trying to get up before Emma does to run. Add on the fact that about 3/4 of America has a cold right now! However I am pretty pissy tonight....I have a race in just 3 days!!! I am hoping to run it under 2 hours....not likely if I can't breathe! Any suggestions on cold remedies? Sorry this is short but I am going back to sulk in the corner!

Sunday, September 20, 2009

I *heart* the Fall!

Today we went apple picking at a new place...well really we just went up and ate our way through the farm and bought a nice bag of apples to take home. Emma is not at the apple picking height yet! Here are some pics that just make me love Fall in New England!

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Drug of Choice?

So I have been working on eating clean for two weeks now and so far I have lost 1 pound. This week was crazy but being in school makes it a lot easier. I just have to find a way to eat my mid-morning snack...maybe a shake. Not sure yet but I am in the middle of teaching so it has to be something quick. I do have a confession to make....there is one little thing that is most definitely NOT clean that I just can't tear myself away from.....Sugar Free Redbull. I'm sure there is nothing healthy about it but I just can't make it through the day without it! Some days I have two and they aren't the small ones. Ugh! I'm sure it is tearing up my stomach and other awful things but with my new schedule of waking up at 4am (today I did it without the alarm...yuck) I just don't have the energy to do it all! The downfall is also that when it starts to wear off, I'm toast. I caught myself almost nodding off as I tested a little 1st grader reading aloud! Not good!!
What is your drug of choice?
On a side note, my little nugget turns 9 months today! Holy cow!!!! Where has all that time gone??? Today is the most perfect Fall day so we are heading out to go apple picking....Yipeeee!

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Bring on the Skinny Jeans

My super awesome trainer just sent me the best contest info ever! She loves to do contests to motivate people. She gives away lots of cool prizes including more training with her which I need since my last day is Saturday! Well this contest is to fit into your skinny jeans!! No weight check, no measurements, nothing. All you need to do is go to her with your skinny jeans. She will have you try them on and she will take your picture. Then she will put them away for 8 weeks. Whoever looks the best after 8 weeks wins!

You know I LOVE a good competition! I mean I look for it everywhere I go! It could be seen as some as an illness but it gets me where I need to go! I have a pair of Lucky jeans that were a little snug before I got pregnant but are expensive and would look good if I fit them.

So there you go...8 weeks to fit into my skinny Lucky jeans! How are your skinny jeans fitting lately?

Oh yeah and that picture is not me....not far from it most days though!

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Biggest Loser=Guilty Girl!

Today is the beginning of a new season of the Biggest Loser. Every season I am glued to the TV while I watch people lose TONS of weight by literally working their booties off! This season poses a special connection for me since one of the contestants, Rudy, was a friend of mine in high school. He was a really great guy who was like a big teddy bear. I lost touch with him but am excited to cheer him on! Watching the show always makes me feel guilty because they just work so hard! This season I hope to be losing with them. I have lost 1 pound so far with the eat clean diet which has me doing cart wheels. I have 4 more to go for pre-pregnancy weight but I am aiming for 10 total.

Continuing on a weigh loss note, I want to give a HUGE shout out to my very good friend Carrie. She ROCKS folks not only as a friend but as a devoted weight loser! Yesterday at lunch everyone was drilling her about her secrets to weight loss and what not. Someone asked her how much she had lost and I almost fell off my seat. She has lost 90lbs. Yes Carrie I am putting it out there because that is GREAT!!! She said it as if it wasn't a big deal but I think it is a HUGE deal and something she should be very proud of! Oh and in addition to that, she has completed 2 sprint triathlons and is starting to train for a 1/2 marathon. Carrie you are my motivation! Keep up the awesome work!!

OK off to watch Rudy! Thinking of waking up at 4am tomorrow so I can fit in my run....still having schedule issues in addition to a sick baby girl!

Sunday, September 13, 2009

"Are you ready for some football?"

We are HUGE Pats fans in this house!!! We came into our wedding reception to the NFL theme song! Emma wore her jersey today since she will not be awake for kick-off tomorrow!

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Rainy Run Day

I was determined this morning not to let a little rain get in the way of my run! When I started out it was just drizzling and I thought to myself, "No big deal. I've run in way worse!" By the end of the ten miles it was pouring! I had to wring my sleeves out several times!!! I felt like I had showered full dressed! Normally people run to and from their car when it is raining that hard and there I was running for fun! At one point I just raised my face to the sky and began to laugh! I needed this drenching run today! This week has been very hard for me...back to teaching...leaving Emma for the first time at daycare...having a super busy schedule and not feeling like I can fit anything in...feeling like a failure...stressed about life in Dad finding out he has ANOTHER ulcer...a good friend with a newborn with heart failure. I needed a run that left me drenched...It reminded me that my week was full of rain but that I made it! God was there for me each and every day giving me what I needed to get through. At those moments when I thought I didn't have any more, He strengthened me. Life is going to be full of rainy days...some will be a light drizzle and some will give me downpours but God is there for me giving me what I need to get through. I'm looking forward to a nice weekend home with the family! I'm going to soak in this time!! Enjoy the rain today!

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Survived the run....this week maybe not!

Sorry to leave you all hanging about the race! I have been just about staying afloat this week since it is my first week back to teaching. Yesterday I thought to myself, "I don't know if I can do all of this!" There is just so much to do every day. I'm sure you all know that so it is nothing new....just really getting me down right now. It make me feel like such a failure when I can't fit it all in just right!

So on to the run. If there was ever a more true description of a race course it was this one. The medal that we got says "16 wicked hills" and I think they miscounted because there had to have been more. We started counting down at the beginning and then lost count! The weather could not have been more beautiful and the scenery was awesome! The course followed the coast line of Gloucester and Rockport Massachusetts and with a temp of about 65 at the coast it was perfect running weather!

We started off with a 10 minute mile pace. We (my friend Jill and I) kept reminding ourselves that this was just a training run and we were not racing. (probably because we were both so nervous). I get so nervous before a race just looking at the people that are there. I start to look at all the skinny, runner-body people and psych myself out. So today I watched the ground most of the time before the race! It worked...kind-of. I'm always fine once I get started. So most of the race was fun. We talked to lots of people and met some really interesting people. It amazed me how many people ran multiple marathons back to back. One girl had even run two in one weekend!! There were several people too that wanted to run a marathon in every state. Very cool stuff! I even learned that there was a marathon in Newport, RI my hometown! Put that on the list for marathons to run.

I saw my hubby and Emma at around mile 10 where there was the most ENORMOUS hill!! It was a good motivator! I had some knee pain just after that. I think it happened when I stopped to say hi and then ran fast to catch up with Jill. It was so tight from my hip and then down and around my knee. That lasted about 2 miles until I think my leg just we
nt numb! Needless to say the end of the race was not as fun and friendly as the beginning. I slowed a bit because of my knee and then my stomach started to kick in for about the last mile. I really need to get a handle on that because I had more energy left but my stomach was turning. The grand finale was a STEEP, twisting hill to the finish. I mean really people!!!!

Finish time 2 hours 45 minutes. Slower than I wanted but I finished!! I just kept thinking that this time last year I looked like this:

and there was no running going on!! I also think I had hidden motives. I was so tired when I got home and that night that I didn't have any trouble sleeping. This is rare for me before the first day of teaching. I am usually up all night. Add to that that it was Emma's first day at day care and I was a sobbing mess, I think I slept well. I would totally recommend this race to someone prepping for a fall marathon, especially if it is hilly. I will say some of them were worse than Heartbreak Hill!

So sorry for the delay but I have been coming to grips with Emma being in daycare and me being back to work. Not fun but a reality for me. Next stop half marathon!! Here are a few pictures from the race beforehand....I felt like a monster next to my nice, petite friend Jill!

me trying to not have a double chin!!

Sunday, September 6, 2009

What the BEEP did I get myself into?!

Ok so I am in full on freak out mode!!! I have my 25K tomorrow morning and I am scared to death! I haven't run that long a distance since before I was pregnant over a year ago! To add to that here is the description of the course from the flyer:
Challenging USATF-certified 25K (15.56 miles) course
along scenic coastal Gloucester and Rockport. Ocean
views and old New England villages with waterfront
sections spread throughout the course. (Oh, and did
we mention the sixteen major hills?) Mile markers and
times, refreshment stations, post-race festivities,
unique awards, raffle, and much more!

Seriously is there a flat course ANYWHERE on the North Shore!?!!! I will give you the play by play tomorrow including pictures! Wish me luck!

number pick-up....don't I look excited! Hey at least the shirt is really nice!

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Runner tested....Mom approved

I have been on a mad hunt for the perfect running skirt. It has been about 8 years since I have worn shorts to run in. I just can't do it....I actually don't even wear regular, everyday shorts! Let's just say I don't necessarily have runners' legs. If runners' legs are illustrated by let's say Kara Goucher, my legs would marvel the likes of say Jason Varitek! This is a self imposed problem due to the fact that I was a catcher for 13 years and weight trained to prevent injury. I have always had bigger legs that are usually really strong. A good thing if you are squatting twice your body weight. Not so good if you are shopping for jeans or running in shorts. The friction could really start a fire! I spend more time digging my inseam out of God knows where and less time on running.

Well my rocking running buddy Jill gave me the heads up on wearing compression shorts under a running skirt. I tried it today on my run and I LOVE it!!! Once I got by the fact that my legs were showing I realized that I was much cooler! They show a little bit under the skirt but it is worth it. My husband actually asked me if I had to wrap my leg for some reason when I got home! Hee hee! Any other suggestions for girls with tree trunk legs?

On another note I have been rocking it with dinners this week so far...yeah I know it's only Tuesday but I am just saying! A little too much snaking though and I need to work on that this week.

My running question for you all is about fueling during a run. On Sunday I had a great run but my stomach was a mess for about 2 hours later because I didn't eat or drink during the run. My good friend Michelle gave me some pointers. What do you all use during your long runs and how often? I know I need to do something but not sure what. When I ran Boston I used sport jelly beans but I can't stand the sight of them now!

Still loving running in this beautiful weather every morning!!! Not looking forward to next week's back to school for many reasons but one being a possible end to morning runs.