Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Alone in the night - simply awesome

41 degrees out. Dark. 83 % humidity.

I put my headlamp on, my reflective wear, kissed my husband and stepped out into the brisk night. I put my earbuds in as protection against the cold and wind, start my watch and I run.

I am alone. My breath is a thick fog before me in the light of my headlamp. No dogs bark. No one on the streets. I run.

I run through the neighborhood. Up and down hills. Some steep. Some gradual. Some short. Some forever long.

There are few street lamps on some roads. On other roads, there are none. But I have my headlamp.

I was aiming for 2 miles, but by pacing myself and dutifully watching my heart rate and pace, I felt like I still had something left in me so I finally turned on my Walkman MP3 player on (yes, my Ipod and Iphone are too large and heavy for my accessory pocket in my jacket)...and I run.

Familiar songs play and my energy grows.

Running down empty roads I enjoy seeing all the early Christmas lights. I listen to favorite songs.
Coming into the last ugly hill when my energy began to fade, one of my most motivational running songs coincidentally began. And I ran.

I finished 3.22 miles without stopping a single time. I finished without pain. I finished without ever hitting max heart rate.

It sure feels good.

AVE HR: 167 (very good)
PEAK HR: 178 on a hill (3 higher than preferred but 9 lower than last weeks race! YAY!)
% of Run that was flat ground: 0%
TIME RAN: 41.30
PACE: 13.2

Sunday, November 27, 2011

5K on the Streets

I am really proud: I ran 3.1 miles today on the street and only saw my HR hit 180 ONCE (I set the alarm to sound if/when it hit) and that was only during the very last half mile of my run while taking a very steep long hill from 169 ft elevation to 339 ft elevation (170 foot incline!). I only stopped running once (on that same hill) when I came across a truck literally parked ON THE SIDEWALK and ACROSS THE BIKE PATH.

TOTAL DISTANCE WALKED to squeeze through the thick brush and trees and catch my breath was .10 of a mile. Once past the truck I ran again.

I am really frustrated: Throughout the run my "CURRENT ACTIVE PACE" was showing between 10.50 and 13.15. A lot of 12's in there. A lot of 13's on hills. But when I downloaded my report it said my average pace was 14:00!!!! NO WAY!!

I am really proud: I didn't feel like running this morning. I hate mornings. I wanted to sleep in. I ran instead.

I am really frustrated:  Once I downloaded my report I was stunned. It said it took me 43:10 to run a 5K!! That is CRAZY! (But my moving pace was 13:40 which is 40:20 minute 5K which is still more than what the watch said!)

Then I noticed my split times (every quarter mile) and saw that according to the report, in eleven of the 12+ quarter miles splits, I STOPPED MOVING. LIES!!!

It also showed in the remaining quarter mile I ran faster than the actual time (HUH!?!?).

Granted, I jogged in place ONCE for about 8 steps at a stop light but that was only once as I had the green on the way out. To get a report showing eleven of 12 quarters had periods of non-movement is maddening.

I am so disappointed in today's post-run report.


Weather/time: started 8:48 am. Very overcast. 90-100% humidity. 47 degrees. Wind gusts clocked at 16mph @ weather station just blocks away. Threatened to rain but held off till I got home.

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Rethinking and Adjusting

I read a lot online, and spoke to the folks at the sporting good store about the very high unexpected heart rate during the race two days ago.

  • My normal 30 minute run HR is an average of 160 with a 165 peak.
  • I was at 171 at just 1.5 minutes with an average of 180 and peak of 187 by 23 minutes.

I could understand if I had been getting those numbers before, but SOMETHING was causing it to spike so early and so high that I need to identify and eliminate from my future runs. I had never hit 180 before, let alone 187. SCARY!! I got weak quickly at after 2.1 miles I had to take my gloves off, and tie my jacket around my waist and walk a few times before getting the HR below 178 and running the last mile in.

I KNOW I can run the 5K non-stop if I can keep my pulse from spiking and going nuts.

What was different at the race that I didn't have in my two months of practice?

1: Most of my workouts are late afternoon. This was early morning. My earliest run in 12 years.

2: I had caffeine within an hour of the run. I normally drink it between 7 am and 9am. I normally run after 5:30 pm.

3: It was 95 % humid out (which makes for harder breathing/exertion) and most of my workouts were indoors or outdoors when humidity was much lower.

4: I had layers of clothes on (long running pants, jog bra, long sleeve running shirt, jacket, gloves and a rain cap with a lining in it). I normally practice in loose knee shorts, jog bra and headband.

5: There was a lot of people running a 9 minute pace around me the first 5 minutes (I am a 10.5'er to 11 on slow days).

SO! With adjustments, I am going for a practice run out in the neighborhood tomorrow.

1: I am going first thing in the morning. I need to get used to that.


3: It will be 100% humid tomorrow. Likely raining. Time to get used to it.

4: Wearing the same running gear EXCEPT I am not trapping the heat in my head with a lined cap! I bought a rain visor yesterday. Also, I will wear gloves with the finger tips removed.

5: I am running alone. I will be watching my pace via my HR monitor/GPS.

I can't wait to try this.....and I am SO thankful for these new shoes that make it possible to run on asphalt without knee or hip strain.

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Turkey Trot 5K - My first race

7:00 am: Breakfast! Half of a whole grain bagel, with a light smearing of peanut butter, topped with bananas. Also, I had half a serving of greek yogurt and some sports water to chase down a Diet Dr Pepper. All 2 hours before running. Looking back, I would do that all the same, but cut out the caffeine. You will see why later.

8:00 am: We picked up my coworker and friend Karolyn on the way and we all remarked at the wonderful and very unexpected weather. It was supposed to rain. Instead, we had golden early morning sunlight on beautiful fall foliage.

8:10 am: We arrived at the park and found a long line of cars waiting to go in. We paid our $3 for parking and were fortunate to have got a spot (or so we heard).

8:15 am - 8:45: This was time spent in lines. Registration line to get our numbers (I got #241 which excited me because #24 is my birthday). T-shirt line to get our shirts. Goody bag line to get our goodies (which got stored in the car). Bathroom line. Then we got in line behind the starting gate.

This is when we noticed how many people were with us. It looked like it was far more than 1,300 people!!! There were tons of dogs and strollers. That worried me.

The fun part of the pre-race time was the music being played. "Take on Me" by Aha; "Final Countdown" by Europe; "Carry on Wayward Son" by Kansas. All the songs being played on the PA system were songs on my run playlists at home. I was so pumped up on adrenaline and caffeine (ooops) that I found myself wanting to go NOW!

8:45 - 9:00: The event personnel began trying to get runners to position based on their average 'times'. They had six minute milers at the front. Then seven's, eights, and from nine's on back it was a hodgepodge. I tried to figure out where other elevens were.

9:00 - 9:03: The start! However, moving over a thousand people off through a start frame on a narrow trail takes time. The race clock said 53 seconds by the time I got through. As I went through the start frame I started my timer/heart monitor and began recording my race. Photos others posted showed MOST of us starting our watches going under it.

We were a thick pack going up hill and onto an even narrower bridge. Not breaking any speed records....

Then when it flattened out and went along the parking lot, hordes (of smart ones) fled the path and ran through the parking lot to join back up on the path later. This added distance to their run so no one minded.

Jogging lightly on the straight-away as the pack broke up a little I had made a point to NOT LOOK AT OTHERS and people were passing me. I didn't care. I was a smart runner. Yup. I had a plan!!! I knew how to do this. I read about it. Just keep my own pace. So I did. Or so I thought.

9:03 - 9:26: I was parallel to the farthest parking lot of the park at just 3 or 4 minutes when I heard my watch beeping like I never heard it before. It was loud and annoying. I looked at my watch and it said: HR 182 "TOO HIGH". WHAT?!?!?! That isn't POSSIBLE! I hadn't even gone a quarter mile yet! NO WAY! I paid attention to my gait. People were still running past me. I still 'felt' like I was in my normal pace.

And a minute later the monitor watch began frantically beeping again. And a minute later. And a minute later. It was embarrassing. Next time I will put it on vibrate.

In fact, my heartrate monitor was yelling at me the entire run and I was getting nervous. My legs felt great. My lungs felt okay. I had no sweat on my brow. Why was my pulse so incredibly high? (It didn't dawn on me I had never ran within an hour of drinking caffeine before and then when you add that to the adrenaline of a large race - whamo!).

Shortly into the race at just before the quarter mile mark there was a runner on the ground trying to talk as people swarmed to help him and administer first aid. I thought it sounded like he had a seizure as he was slurring very badly. I slowed and someone told us that one of those helping was a doctor "please keep it moving".

And still that monitor of mine kept telling me HR "TOO HIGH". This concerned me. My 'max' heart rate is supposedly around 175. I kept TRYING to jog as slowly as I could. I wondered if I should just stop and walk and promised myself I would go a little longer. I practiced the breathing that always works at home to reduce heart rate. It didn't work.

I took my wind breaker off and tied it around my waist thinking if I could cool down that might help. It didn't but I felt better.

We were warned that part of the path was under water near the 5K turn around. I got there and volunteers were shouting we could turn around "It's alright" and "just a few more yards to the turn around". I, like most others, ran through the two large lane filling puddles. We cheered like children playing. It was actually my favorite part at that point. The cold water felt good.

I saw the 5K turn around and it was MUCH more than 'just a few more yards". Still, I jogged all the way to it, touched it and started my jog back. Then I saw throngs headed towards me. I jogged through the puddles and then went off the path....and walked awhile.

Yup. I took a break for a few steps until the throngs passed me and cleared the path enough for me to continue running. Excuse? Yeah. But I needed it. I started a light jog again and away I went.

Then ONCOMING traffic became HORRID. I was running into the throngs of slower runners, late runners and those running with dogs, children and strollers. I was coming up on others that had passed me earlier who were now walking in front of me side by side on the already limited space. I had a LOT of road blocks. I looked at my watch to see if I should sprint through and noticed the watch appeared to have stopped. I pressed SAVE just in case and was bummed that I might have lost ALL THAT DATA. Luckily, it saved the first 26 minutes worth (but no more).

I did a lot of dodging, weaving and cutting to traverse this section of the race.

Even with the walking parts, I was still maintaining an average time of 12:29.

9:26-9:30 am: During this time I did more light jogging than walking, but I did do a lot of the later. More than I planned. I can't remember much of that 4 minutes other than jog-walk-race walk-jog-walk-jog. I did get my heart rate down to the low 170's.

I did notice a lot of people cheating themselves though. People cutting across the grasses when the trail went in deep on curves, etc.

9:30 - 9:37 am: I decided to try and record more of the run. I pressed record and decided I was committed to run non-stop from then on. However, NOW I was sweating. NOW I was tired. NOW I was feeling drained and weak. It was HARD lifting those feet!!! I think I dragged them a few times.

On one turn close enough to hear the announcer calling in the first of the 10K runners back at the start, I noticed that the trail now had red ribbon and we were all being diverted through the grass, up a (ARGH!!) steep hill and through brush and trees, then back down the slippery steep muddy slope and across more soppy grass. I looked back and saw that the ambulance was STILL there from where that man had gone down earlier. That was worrisome. If it had been a seizure, they would have been done by then.

I later heard that he had a heart attack and 'it was pretty bad'.

9:37 - 9:40 am: I finally saw the far parking lot! I heard music! I wanted to STOP! lol This was the hardest part of the race. Then to make it harder, as I was running the path, those that had finished were lackadaisically walking back to their cars dead center on the trail (why?!?). Then, as I got to the near parking lot and the bridge that lead to the hill decline into the finish line, I had to run the gauntlet and much to my surprise - no one was cheering me and those with me on.

I had NEVER been to a 5K where those who were standing around after they finished (or the friends and families of runners waiting for them to come in) didn't cheer everyone in on the last stretch.

That was heartbreaking....until I saw George! He was photographing me and then he smiled and waved as I was kicking into my fastest sprints I could muster at that time.

I passed under the timer at either 9:40:34. Taking the finish time of 40:34 and subtracting the :53 seconds from when I went under the start bar (behind the crowds) nets a finish time of 39:41.

9:40-9:50: I drank water and half a banana and stretched. I felt my legs locking up so I told George I was going to go back and find Karolyn. They announced that the Polar Bear Swim would start in ten minutes and he promised to photograph it for me.

9:50-10:07: I walked and jogged back through the parking lot (off the trail) and then in the dirt and grass to the side of the trail (since there was TONS of racers still out there!!!) until I found Karolyn. I walked back with her. That really helped me a lot. I needed that walk. The perfect cool down.

10:07-10:30: Karolyn got some water, I got a half a bagel and she commented that her ankle hurt. I suggested we dip our ankles into the polar bear lake. Bless her heart she agreed! We went over to the lake, took both of our shoes off and rolled our pants up to our knees and stepped into the frigid lake. That was really cold but I think my feet and calves thanked me.

We walked barefoot to the car and went home. But as a note, as we were walking back, runners were still coming back in droves and we were cheering them on. A few of those who received our kudos looked and smiled or said thanks. :)


My actual run time for the 5K (of obstacles ) is: 39 minutes and 41 seconds.

Pace: 12:46


First 26 minutes - 2.12 miles (of the full 3.1 miles) worth of data:
  • Average Pace - 12:24 (included the periods of walking)
  • Fastest Pace - 9:53 (Whooops!!! Sure didn't feel like I got that fast)
  • Average Heart rate - 180
  • Highest Heart rate - 187 (in the second mile)
  • Time it took to reach Max Heart rate - 1:42 minutes (HOLY COW!!!)
  • Max elevation gain - 17 feet
  • Max elevation drop - 30 feet
  • Distance/time actually running - first 1.75 miles were non-stop. Then a few periods of walk/race-walk/jog alternating before going back to non-stop after I got my heart rate under 180 the last mile.

  • No caffeine before the run - I will have enough natural adrenaline
  • Watch my pace! - I didn't know how to on my monitor watch. Now I do. I should have never been running under 10 minute paces today and it sure as heck never felt like I was.
  • Find out today's official time - and beat it.

WEATHER/TEMPS: Race started at 40.1 degrees and was 40.3 at the end. Overcast. Humidity was 93%. Some gusts.

CLOTHING: Purple shirt TOO HOT. Gloves TOO HOT. No sweat band needed. Could had gone without the cap holding heat in.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

First Run Jitters

My first 5K in 12 years is just a little over 12 hours away.

Rain is expected and according to the event planners, they went out and ran the course today and reported that there are places in which the entire path is under 'an inch or two' of standing water. The race is on a path shared by 1,100-1,300 runners, joggers, walkers, and strollers both coming and going.

  • My worries are that I will either: Overheat in my winter runwear; be too cold; get too wet; dehydrate; strain my knees; or fight water on my eyeglasses (run without them???).

  • My hope is I will find others jogging in my weight/age range so I don't stand out like a sore thumb. I only lost a few pounds the last two weeks and am at 177 pounds today (might be 176 tomorrow??). That is huge compared to the joggers I see on the streets.

  • My focus is to just run MY pace as I predict that is going to be really hard for me when I see all the 8 min and 9 min runners take off around me (I am a 10 to 11 min runner under good conditions at this point).

  • My 1st goal is to finish through the crowd, puddles, rain and obstacles at under 35 minutes.

  • My 2nd goal is to finish without walking for any reason other than traffic jams of participants.

I am not having Thanksgiving dinner tomorrow, but I bought myself a miniature 5.6 oz container of Dreyer's Drumstick ice cream. If I can meet either of my two goals, I will treat myself tomorrow night. If not, it will sit until the run in Portland 10 days later. :)

Monday, November 21, 2011

Parrot Crossing part II

Put on the new shoes, the long Nike cold-weather running pants (yuck) and ran 30 minutes on the treadmill. It is POURING out there in the dark winter night.

Decent run until at 22 minutes my parrot jumped off her cage and came running across the floor to me...just as two dogs and two cats went running for her.

Had to hop off and rescue her and that shot my pulse through the roof for a minute.

Todays run: 30 minutes non-stop.
Average Heart rate over the 30 minute run: 150
Peak Heart rate: 162

Sunday, November 20, 2011

New Shoes & Evanescence

I was worried about the upcoming 5k's being on asphalt and was doing research. I found my Brooks shoes were great for control (overpronation) but not the cushiest. We went to Fit Right NW on Friday night and I told the sales person that I loved my Brooks, but needed something with more cushion...something for heavier runners.

He knew exactly what to suggest - Asics Foundation Gel 10's (that is the model, not the size!).
It felt like I was walking on pillows. I did a few little jogs and found the sole flexed (my Brooks felt like they had a cross bar through the sole), were lighter and did I mention the walking on pillows?
I bought them immediately. Today they fit MUCH more snugly than when I tried them on but I ran anyways. I LOVE THEM!!! No hip strain (great motion control) and no knee burn. They felt great.

Thank you Fit Right NW!!!

Todays run: 30 minutes non-stop.
Average Heart rate over the 30 minute run: 148
Peak Heart rate: 158 (Zone 5 but only for a few minutes)

Speaking of that elevated peak heart rate, that occurred at around the 22 minute mark when an Evanescence's song, "BRING ME TO LIFE" came on my playlist!!! I tried very hard to maintain my standard pace but still the heart rate shot up drastically during that song. I removed it from my long run playlist because I don't need to wear myself out any sooner than I would naturally. :D

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Uphill Gains

30 minutes non-stop: treadmill.

I hated my run tonight. It just wasn't fun.

Of course it was the first time I ran 75% of a 30 minute workout at a 2% incline. Not fun at all. Had to work on my posture the entire time. Legs and calves felt it for sure.

However, I feel AWESOME now that my post-run stretches are done.

Go figure!

Even though I was running at an incline for the first time on the treadmill, my heart rates today stayed much lower than on Monday. That is promising. :)

Average rate for the thirty minutes: 155 beats per minute

Wednesday, November 16, 2011


I haven't run since Monday. And like most weeks, I won't be running until Thursday.

That makes for a long 72 hours. I want to run but Monday and Tuesday are filled with family and distractions. for me. It is raining, cold and windy and dark outside.

Maybe I should either move my treadmill to the garage where I won't see TV or be tempted to just sit on the couch after a long day with my husband on one of his few nights home when I am home - or - Maybe I should buy another treadmill so I can have one in comfort and one for Mon and Tues?

Maybe if I were rich!! Until then, I go without 3 days straight....and eat instead. This isn't helping.

Monday, November 14, 2011

Heart rate confusion

I was reading last night that in a typical week, a runner should have several types of runs based on their heart rates and types of exertion. Since yesterday was a long distance run at a flat level with slight (normal) escalation towards the end, I thought I would try the type where you push it to the top then relax then push it. Problem was, I pushed it to 164 beats per minute as early as 6 minutes and my heart rate wanted to stay up there even during the two minutes of slowed snails pace running in between the sprints. There was no real ups and downs.

I am confused.

Either way: Ran 30 minutes tonight. The first 20 minutes had all out sprints for a minute, every third minute (for a total of six intervals completed between my normal pace).

Heartrate after the sixth minute into the workout I averaged a 164-166 heart rate.

The first 30 seconds after running (while walking through a cool-down) it dropped to 144 and by the 5th minute of walking was down to 94.

I need to read more on this. I am not getting it.

Sunday, November 13, 2011

45 minutes of treadmill sand

The resistance on the treadmill (since it was serviced last week) is still taking getting some used to. It still feels like running in sand. I wonder what he did to it when he changed the belt, rollers and motor.

  • Ran 45 minutes non-stop at my easy/distance pace.

  • Heart rate @ 148 and 161 from the 6th minute on.

There was one peak at around 42 minutes of 164 but I made myself slow it up a bit. Might have to do with running so soon after my morning caffeine?

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Treadmill Sand

Today was my first time on the treadmill since the new motor and rollers were installed yesterday. Immediately I knew that this was NOTHING like my what I was used to.

There was a rumble/vibration I could feel with every step, and it felt like I was running in deep if the resistance was somehow cranked up yet even at my normal casual pace setting I felt like I could barely keep up. At 4 minutes I felt strain and had to really focus on form and staying centered on the belt as I was struggling.

Again - it felt like running in deep sand. I hated it. Still, race day is coming so I ran my full expected 30 minutes.

My resting heart rate is 58. I monitored my pulse with a runners heart rate watch and found I was VERY steady IN THE ZONE at 148-154 beats per minute the entire 27 minutes before I cranked my speed up 15% for the remaining 3 minutes. My heart rate then hit at least 159, possibly more (I couldn't get a reading at the peak of my last three minutes).


Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Night Run in the Rain - 11:30 min Pace

Since the races are so close, I thought I would try out my 'rain resistant' hat and jacket, as well as my new long sleeve running shirt and see if they would keep me warm and dry. I ran 1.5 miles non-stop tonight in a steady light rain to find out and learned a lot in the process.
  • My new hat is AMAZING!! Best purchase I made yet. My eyeglasses and my head never got wet and the built in sweat band was very absorbent.
  • My jacket worked pretty darned good in the rain, too. I never felt wet, it was lightweight, and I didn't get overheated even after 17 minutes of running with it zipped up over a long sleeve running shirt. Likewise, I never felt cold in the 49 degrees/rain.
  • My neighborhood has long stretches of road without any street lights. It got very dark twice. I couldn't even see the details of the road. Won't be doing that here again without some form of lighting with me.
  • My neighborhood streets have a lot of wet, slippery leaves on the sides of the road.
  • Not sure if cars could see the small reflective stripes and icons on my hat & jacket. Ordering adhesive reflective tape.
  • There is a lot of chimney smoke on cold fall nights in my neighborhood.
  • When your nose is running, it helps if you have something absorbent with you. Need to carry a handkerchief!!
  • My legs and knees felt better than I thought they would.
  • Going down hill is definitely easier than up hill. ;)
  • My pace in the dark, wet and hills was 11:30 minute miles. Hoping that improves.

I stopped only because I started feeling it in my shins (a first!) and right knee. I was so tense running in the wet dark that even my neck and shoulders hurt when I was done. I didn't want to overdo it. I got the answers I was looking for: My gear will be fine if it is raining or cold.

Below is the GPS graph showing the inclines/hills I ran tonight over the 1.5 miles.

My running cap is from Outdoor Research, and is called The Revel Cap.
My running jacket is from Brooks, and is a men's Brooks Essentials.
My winter running shirt: Brooks Epiphany for women.
My shoes are Brooks Addiction 8's .

Monday, November 7, 2011

Shorter distance - faster

A book I was reading suggested running all but one day a week and to mix up the types of runs.

Ran 20 minutes tonight.

- Ran my comfy pace + .3 mph faster for the first half
- Ran my comfy pace + .5 mph faster for the last half

Right leg felt better tonight.

Tonight's Challenges:
  • CRUDDY music came on twice (Tom Petty singing 'Breakdown' is not motivating)
  • Hot Flash hit at 6 minutes
  • At those speeds I had to keep focused on an upright posture

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Weighty issues and Goals

It is getting close to my first two events. So quickly!

  • Thanksgiving Morning "TURKEY TROT": 5K walk/run. 17 days away! Not expecting great times as this is so packed most walk it. Maybe 45 minutes? LOL!!

  • December 4th "JINGLE BELL RUN": 5K in Portland, Oregon on the street. 27 Days Away! Supposedly this is the BIG one and I should be able to run as far as my body will let me that morning.

Current race challenge - I am still recovering from a mountain hike I took 8 days ago. Most everything is okay now, but my right upper leg is still feeling pull/light pain when lifted. My brother said it sounds like a groin pull that can take quite awhile to heal. Just take it slow and easy for now.

#1 GOAL:
  • Lose 5 pounds between now and December 4th. I hate to admit it, but today I decided to put the numbers out there. I weighed 180 pounds this morning. At 150 I used to be a lean mean running machine. But that is 30 pounds away from now. My doctor recommended no asphalt or concrete running until I hit at least 165-170 max but it looks like I will be hitting pavement somewhere between 175 instead on the 4th. Hoping I don't hurt my knees. If you want to know what that feels like, go grab a 30 pound sack of pet food and then run for 30-45 minutes.
Going strong - getting stronger! :)

TODAY's RUN: Ran around the block with my DORK golden retriever WAY above my pace. That was not the warm up I expected. Then, ran on the treadmill at a slightly faster than normal pace for 30 minutes non-stop. Did a LOT of stretching as that right leg is still a bit bothersome. BUT I DID IT!!!

By the way - this is me post-run today wearing my AWESOME Brooks running jacket (that can't be missed from a mile away) and my rain-proof running cap. I sure wish I could afford that jacket in every color. I bought it in Men's so it would be long enough to cover my hips. :D

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Back in the Saddle Again

I looked forward to running again all week, yet at the same time worried about causing serious injury to already strained and overworked muscles so close to the two races coming up.

I decided I would just run ONE mile tonight.

However, at one mile I decided to at least make it a true aerobic workout and go a full 20 minutes.

It wasn't pretty and I kept paying attention to my posture and legs. Am I turning in at the ankles or knees? Straighten up! Is that pain starting on my right leg? No? Keep going. Was THAT? Nope. Okay. Keep going. It was very mental. But oddly, there wasn't a lot of sweating going on tonight. I guess mental is just as hard on a workout as physical fatigue because at 20 minutes I was ready for my cool down.

However, I feel so good afterwards. I just feel stronger - physically, mentally and emotionally.

I needed that.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Another Setback

  • On Saturday my husband and I went on a hunt for some waterfalls in the Cascade Mountain range. We wondered why there were no trail guides for it, other than an occasional person's rough description of how to get there and one GPS point.

Long story short, there was no trail to the falls. It was a downward descent down a mountain side on a steep and crumbling lavic flow that had slippery moss and loose rocks. We kept going down, down, down and there was places so steep I sat on my bottom and scooted down. Loose rocks and slippery spots resulted in lots of startled frantic efforts to stay upright.

We did find the falls. I did get photos (see above). Then we went back up the middle of the rock slide. Straight up. At times, scaling the wall of loose rock with hands and feet. At times, sending large boulders crashing below us as they gave way. At times, wondering if we weren't a bit nuts.

We were both INCREDIBLY proud to make it to the top. It felt exhilarating.

  • Sunday, all the ankle twisting, knee bending, hip turning, and muscles involved the day before in staying upright on our hike caught up with me.

  • Monday, it was even worse. Simply stepping down onto the street off a sidewalk sent jolts up my legs! This caused me a lot of concern.

  • Tuesday, I tried a short run during a break at work. I had to stop at about a fifth of a mile as it still hurts to LIFT my legs.

My first 5K run is only 33 days away.

I am NOT giving up. But I **AM** taking it easy. If I have to walk some of the December 5K then I will have to walk it. But I WILL be there and I WILL finish it.

Live and Learn.