Life Update!

Hey everyone!! I have been pretty bad at blogging this week… it’s just cause I’ve been crazy busy. Training is going great though, and I am still marching my way towards the starting line at Denver. The end of this week marks the half way point of this cycle, and although I am feeling like I am getting more fit and ready, anything more than 16 miles still feels daunting and scary.

Last weekend I went backpacking with Frank and our friend, Ben in the Ozarks. It did get in the way of my running a little, but it was amazing to see some of the beautiful sights that the southern Midwest has to offer.

I did manage to fit in a short run during our trip, but I was just exhausted from the hilliness of the terrain.

We spent two nights in the wilderness in the White Mountain Recreational Area. Since it is winter, I was stuck with a rather huge and heavy backpack to accommodate my 0 degree sleeping bag. Frank and I have been talking about trying fastpacking, where you pack ultralight gear and run/hike to cover higher mileage. Although we’ve had some pretty big mileage days by just hiking, fast packing allows you to get a little deeper into the wilderness and see places that normally take a few days to get to. I think we need to do a few more backpacking trips to train, but we are hoping to try it this summer.

Elly was pretty glad to see me when we got back from the Ozarks. As per usual, she passed out next to me on the couch. I just love this cat so much.

This is the most perfect animal in the world. 🙂

I am officially signed up for the Chicago Marathon in October. If you remember, I deferred last year after an ankle injury that left me unable to walk. I feel more determined than ever to get to that starting line. Although it isn’t the race that I wanted it to be last year, I am excited to have Chicago be my 2nd marathon and be the first time that I am chasing a marathon PR!!

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This time I am determined to make it!

I was a little worried about burning out after Colfax and not being able to train for Chicago, but I am going to be taking 2 weeks completely off of running and heading to Europe with my mom. I imagine that will help me clear my mind and reset before marathon training begins again.

 Well, that’s basically it for my week. I’ll post next week to let you know how my training has been. I have a 16-miler on Saturday to tackle, so hopefully that goes well.

How was your week? Any fun or exciting plans this weekend?

Some Goals, Weather, and a Dream!

This weekend is the season opener for the DINO trail racing series, and I couldn’t be more excited! I’ll be headed to Mounds State Park on Friday, to camp and wake up early for a 15K. The best part is… husband is running too! He’s doing the 5K, but I’m pretty excited to have him racing with me. He isn’t often a runner, but it’s fun when he comes out. The race is likely to be a muddy one. The snow has melted on the trails and it is projected to rain on Friday and Saturday. I guess that just makes for interesting trail conditions.

Perfect recipe for some muddy trails. Bring it on!
Perfect recipe for some muddy trails. Bring it on!

Typically I don’t have time goals for trail races, since the terrain and trail conditions play such a large role in race difficulty. I’ll be shooting for 1:35:00, but my only real goal is to just have fun and run a smart race.

I completed Kristina’s Virtual 10K for Team Paws today! It was pretty awesome, and I walked away with a PR! To make the day even better, it was warm enough to wear shorts. Spring has finally arrived.

I'm getting fast! This was a pretty big PR for me.
I’m getting fast! This was a pretty big PR for me. 

So, I have a surprise. It’s more of a dream right now, but I wanted to tell you, since it could really change my training in the next few months…

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I entered the lottery to run the Chicago Marathon. I realize that most people will not be picked, but hey, maybe I will. I’ve always wanted to run Chicago. I was in town a few years ago during the marathon and it looked awesome. It would be my first, and I think it would be a pretty awesome race to debut at. We’ll see what happens…

Anyone else looking to do Chicago? What do you think about trail racing? Also, go wish Lizzy good luck on her Marathon this weekend! 

Training Update: Spring is here!!

This week began with temperatures in the single digits, but ended with highs of 45 degrees. I’m pretty excited about the change, and I’m hoping that the snow leaves for good. I’m definitely feeling a lot better than I was a week ago, and I’m back to my usual training intensity. Also, I jumped on the bandwagon and got a Believe Training Journal. I gotta say, I love it. There are lots of helpful hints on training and also on what you should include in a training journal. The material in it is light hearted, and it helped me keep track of how I felt all week.

My Believe Training Journal. I think this will help me track potential injuries and things that really work for me in training. I still need to write out my goals.
My Believe Training Journal. I think this will help me track potential injuries and things that really work for me in training. I still need to write out my goals.

Monday: Rest day
I felt pretty terrible, and ended up taking the afternoon off from work to sleep.

Tuesday: More Rest
I was still feeling pretty icky, so I laid low, went into work late and did not run.

Wednesday: 3.1 miles on treadmill + Yoga
I was feeling a lot better and decided to run. I didn’t really want to run in the cold with such a terrible cough, so I went to the gym and ran for 30 minutes on the treadmill. I took it really slow and just focused on my breathing. I had to stop a few times from coughing, but I felt ok and pretty strong, despite the cold.

Thursday: Unintentional 0 miles + Yoga
I had intended to run on Thursday, but I got stuck at work until pretty late. I had to teach yoga at 8 pm and I took the class before mine and did most of my class along with the students. I didn’t really want to run at the gym late at night, so I just went home to rest. I wanted to run, just didn’t work out. Eh….Oh well.

Friday: Hill Repeats x 6 – total of 4.4 miles + yoga
Friday was the first day that I felt totally fine again. It was also 7 degrees. I sucked it up and ran outside with a 10 minute warm up, and then 6 times up and down the only hill in town. It isn’t exactly big, but I tried to keep a pretty good pace on the way up to tire myself out. Worked pretty well, and I had major runner’s high afterwards. I warmed down for about 10 minutes and kept an overall pace of 9:15/mile. Pretty fun workout! Yoga was awesome, as per usual.

This is the only hill in South Bend.
This is the only hill in South Bend.

Saturday: Easy 4.3 miles + Hiked 6 miles
Saturday had a high of 45 degrees (I know, it was 7 the day before. The midwest is nuts!), so Frank and I took the opportunity and went hiking at a state park close by. The trails were covered in snow, but the skies were blue and it was wonderful to finally be able to be outside without a jacket. In the afternoon, Frank biked while I ran along a bike trail about 30 minutes outside South Bend. It was relaxing and fun! I tried to keep it chill and had a pace of 9:30/mile.

Running along the scenic Pumpkinvine Trail.
Running along the scenic Pumpkinvine Trail.

Sunday: 12 mile long run + Yoga
Ah, finally a long run. I missed mine last week from being sick and I was really happy to get out. The day was perfect too, with blue skies and warm (for Indiana) weather. I ran along the river, at my usual long run spot. Miles 10 and 11 were kinda slow, since I was on tired legs from running three days in a row. Besides that, it felt great to be out there. I kept a 9:34/mile pace.

Nice view for my long run! I'm loving the spring weather.
Nice view for my long run! I’m loving the spring weather.

Total Milage: 23.8

I’m pretty excited about this upcoming week. I have the first trail race of the season on saturday, and the temperatures are supposed to make it all the way up to 60 degrees. I can’t wait to be running in comfortable weather and IN SHORTS! The trail race is at Mounds State Park and is through the Do Indiana Outdoors trail series. I’m pretty excited for this one, and hopefully I’ll get to participate in a few more of their events. Next week should look something like this:

Monday: Rest
Tuesday: Kristina’s Virtual 10K
Wednesday: Recovery Run with Run Group
Thursday: Intervals
Friday: Rest
Saturday: 15K Trail Race
Sunday: Recovery Run

How was your week? Is the weather looking better where you are too?