Posted in Marathon Mondays, Running

Marathon Mondays – Week 9 of Chicago Marathon Training

It’s 9 weeks into the program and honestly if you’re still reading these recaps, I applaud you. LOL. I worry that these recaps can be kind of redundant especially if the workouts are all the same, but this recap, I have a treat for you at my expense. LOL. I completely broke down during Tuesday’s interval workout. Keep reading to find out why. 🙂

(Scheduled mileage)Actual mileage

Monday (7 miles)7.5 miles

Two Mondays in a row where I didn’t feel sluggish. Hooray! My running group only runs from 3-6 miles so I headed over 20 minutes earlier and did 2 miles before the run started.

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Tuesday (4 x 1200 m with 1 mile WU and CD)3 x 1200 + 1 x 900 m with 1 mile WU and CD

And Tuesday is where I broke down. I had a really long day at work and got out a little later than expected. I was really stressed out, but I was still determined to get my interval done so I went out on the track and started. Most of the run went well, but on my last loop, my stomach just cramped up and I just hunched over and couldn’t run anymore. I started crying out of frustration and I just sat there for about 10 minutes trying to figure out if I should continue or not. I ended up not finishing the interval out of fear for my body and slowly jogged back to my office to grab my clothes and go home. Honestly, it was a really difficult moment for me. Running is something I know I can do. After a long day at work, it’s something I depend on to relieve tension so even a slight mishap like this one just broke me. I’m sure it also has to do with my impending defense Eek! Anyway, I finished the night with a pep talk to myself and decided that tomorrow was another day and it’d be fine. 🙂

Wednesday (Rest)9.5 easy miles

Thursday was going to be full of traveling and I knew I wouldn’t have the time to run before my flight so I made the decision to switch my usual rest day with my “tempo run.” The run ended up being an easy run because my tempo run would actually be race day. The 9.5 miles were difficult. I could feel my body needing the rest, but I was determined to put in the miles so I took it really easy. It was supposed to be 10 miles, but I also wasn’t feeling that well so I cut it short.

Thursday (8 mile tempo run with 1 mile WU and CD)Rest/Travel

Woohoo rest day! Made my way up to Vancouver.

Friday (5 easy miles)4.5 miles

Since Saturday was race day, I needed to do a shake out run. Hanson’s marathon method called for 5 miles so I upped and did an easy run. I was up in Vancouver with a friend and we ran part of the seawall together. It was a beautiful run and I honestly didn’t want it to end, but we got tired and decided to call it quits at 4.4 miles.

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Vancouver run time!

Saturday (8 miles)13.4 miles (tempo sort of)

Ran the SeaWheeze Half marathon, which I will recap sometime in the next two weeks. Trust me, it was amazing and you do not want to miss my recap.

Sunday (10 miles)3.7 miles

With all the sightseeing we had done in the previous two days, I could only manage a 3.7 mile recovery run instead of the 4.7 that I needed to finish the week’s scheduled mileage.

Total mileage (46 miles)45 miles

Considering that I was in another country for 3 of the days and had to move my running around quite a bit, I’m going to call this week a success. Hooray!

How do you rearrange your schedule when traveling? Do you run while on vacation?

 

Posted in Marathon Mondays, Running, Thoughts

Marathon Mondays – Week 8 of Chicago Marathon Training

Wheeee and now I’m done with week 8 of Chicago marathon training. 9 weeks and counting until I run my second full marathon. YIKES!

(Scheduled)Actual mileage

Monday (5 miles)5 miles

This Monday was probably the first Monday in a while where I didn’t feel super sluggish. Hooray! Ran 5 miles with a group and called it a day.

Tuesday (5 x 1000 m with a 1 mile WU and CD)5 x 1000 m with a 1 mile WU and CD

About halfway through my intervals, I wanted to quit. LOL. A few weeks ago, someone told me that if you want to quit halfway through your intervals, you’re doing it right. Ever since then, it’s kind of stuck with me and I’ve embraced the suck. If I want to get faster, this is what I have to do.

Wednesday (Rest) Rest

Hallelujah. 🙂

Thursday (Tempo run 8 miles with 1 mile WU and CD)8 miles with 1 mile WU and CD

Thursday was busy, busy, busy, not to mention HUMID AS HELL. I had a lab meeting followed by a phone interview. (Look at me trying to make it out in the real world. LOL) Then it was just too hot and humid to run so I waited the heat out and the longer I waited, the less I wanted to run. This was my first 8 mile tempo run and I wasn’t sure I could do it. Doubt should be my middle name because during this whole training cycle, I’ve been doubting myself. Long story short, I NAILED MY TEMPO RUN. The splits were so close that I wanted to cry. LOL. Weather really does make a difference and I swear, I will never try to do a tempo run in hot weather (unless there was no other option) ever again.

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Hellooo tempo run!

Friday (6 miles) 5 miles

I had a few last minute plans come up so I had to run in the heat to make those plans. It was not pretty.

Saturday (5 miles)15.1 miles (I always swap Sat and Sun mileage b/c I just cannot run 13+ miles by myself)

My running partner’s legs weren’t feeling too great so she ended up only running 3 miles with me before she turned around. That left me to my own devices to try and entertain myself for the other 13. LOL. To make running more fun, I’ve been trying to enjoy the surroundings a bit more, which I think has actually made me a happier person overall. Hooray!

Anyway, to cover 15 miles, I had to be a bit creative. Movin’ Shoes sent us out on an out and back path that covered maybe 12 miles. Once I got to the point where I had to turn around, I started looping streets like a crazy person to make up the necessary mileage. I ran by a bunch of stores that I hadn’t seen before and I felt like a tourist. I even ended up passing by this really cool “Blah blah blah” sign while I was there.

 

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Sometimes you just gotta get away from all the Blah, blah, blah and just run. 🙂 

During the last two miles, it got hot and I definitely struggled, but I finished and that’s still a win in my book. 🙂

Sunday (15 miles)5.1 miles

My Saturday run wiped me out. I passed out around 10 pm and woke up 11 hours later not wanting to run. LOL. I ran anyway and it ended up being a nice run. I stopped at almost every mile to cool down, but it is what it is. 🙂

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Came across this “Turtle X-ing” sign; I can relate LOL

Weekly mileage (47 miles)47.1 miles


Thoughts of the Week: Don’t let doubt and fear stop you from what you want to accomplish. If you want it, you should go for it and oftentimes, you’ll surprise yourself at how far you can go. 🙂

This upcoming week will be difficult. I have to do some maneuvering of my schedule because I’ll be racing Seawheeze on Saturday and will be traveling Thursday and Sunday.

Question for my fellow runners: How is your training going? Any races coming up? Have any of you raced Seawheeze or even been to Vancouver? Suggestions welcome!

Posted in Running, Thoughts

It’s Heating Up – Wrapping up July

I feel like I’m writing this monthly recaps every other week! I guess time flies when you’re swamped with work. LOL. I did have a bit of fun too. Oh and running, there was a lot of running involved.

Graduate School – July will be my last full month as a graduate student. My defense is set for Wednesday, August 23rd and can I say that I’m STRESSED BEYOND BELIEF. I’m still busily writing my dissertation. It’s a bit frustrating to read pages and pages of findings only to summarize it in two or three sentences. Although I’m not making bounds of progress, I’m making progress and that’s all that matters. At least that’s what I keep telling myself. I’m also in the midst of applying for jobs as well and well, you know how that goes.

Comic-Con – If you didn’t know, I consider myself a nerd. I grew up playing video games (Final Fantasy, Diablo II, Heroes of Might and Magic, Street Fighter, etc) and nowdays, you can find me playing board games (Bang, Machi Koro, King of Tokyo, etc). I used to watch a few animes and am now more interested in super heroes. So when registration for Comic-Con came out, you know I had to try and get a ticket. Luckily, I got one. 🙂

I even cosplayed for the event. Made my costume completely from scratch (minus the wig). I started out with a white shirt, dyed it with RIT-dye, cut it up, and made my mask (on my head) with paper mache.

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I’m Nelliel from Bleach!
I had a blast walking around the exhibition hall looking at all the cool artwork and seeing all the other cosplays. I didn’t see any famous people this time around, but I did meet up with LOTS of people (even one cool community manager from BibRave who came all the way from Australia!). Below are some of the cool things I saw.

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(Left to right, top to bottom) Lumpy Space Princess aka Erin from BibRave; Liana Hee artwork; Gogo, Hiro, and Honey Lemon; Vuduberi artwork; Aku Aku from Crash Bandicoot (LOVE THIS GAME), and a lot of Yummy World plushies

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(Left to right, top to bottom) Star Lord and Mantis, Deadpool, Pikachu, Big Boy, one of the professors from Pokemon (who actually gave out miniature pokemon!), and Aladdin

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(Left to right, top to bottom) Autumn Fredrickson artwork , Mega Construx Pokemon, a Gudetama plushie, Rick and the Butter robot from Rick and Morty, and Crabapple and Pork chomp plushies from Inki-drop
Running – I LOGGED 158 MILES THIS MONTH! Yes, you read that right. With marathon training, I almost doubled the mileage I was running in previous months and never did I think I was capable of logging that many miles in a month. I would see everyone’s monthly mileage and think, wow, they’re insane. And now, I’m one of the insane ones. I kind of like it. LOL. In other running news, I ran my 15th half marathon this month at the San Diego Craft Classic. Oh, I also registered a team for the SoCal Ragnar Relay so that’s happening next April. Oh man, what did I do? Have I gone insane? Probably, but I think it’s a good kind of insane. 🙂

How was your July? 

Posted in Marathon Mondays, Running

Marathon Mondays – Week 7 of Chicago Marathon Training

And just like that, week 7 of Chicago marathon training is over. Only TEN more weeks to go. CRAP. Will I survive this? I’m already terribly exhausted. LOL. Maybe I should have chosen a less intense program. Sigh. Oh well, go big or go home, right?

Scheduled MileageActual Mileage

Monday (6 miles) 6 miles 

For the second Monday in a row, I felt SUPER sluggish and wanting to die (I exaggerate, of course) during my easy run. BUT for the second Monday in a row, my friends stayed by me and kept pushing me to the finish. Yay!

Tuesday (6 x 800 m with 400 m recovery; 1 mile WU and CD) (6 x 800 m with 400 m recovery; 1 mile WU and ~1.75 mile CD) 

Midway through my interval training, my stomach decided that it wanted to play games with me. This is when I found out that there were NO BATHROOMS available by the track I was running on. I ended up taking a break to find a bathroom and when I found one, my stomach decided that it was fine again. Sigh. I didn’t let that deter me though. I ran back to the track and finished the rest of my intervals.

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I’m so fast, I’m just a blur. LOL
Wednesday (Rest) Rest 

Of course I rested. Wednesdays are now a god send to me. LOL.

Thursday (5 mile tempo; 1 mile WU and CD)5 mile tempo; 1 mile WU and 1.2 mile CD

I was pretty nervous about this tempo run since I botched the last one. But luck was on my side this time. Aside from a tingling sensation at the bottom of my feet for the first three miles, the run went well and I nailed my pacing! Hooray! I ran in the evening this time to make sure heat wasn’t an issue and ended up running a bit faster than my goal pace (I was nervous about missing my pace again), but I’m calling this a win in my book.

Friday (5 miles)5.2 miles

I have never loved easy runs more. I made sure to make this run a relatively easy one because I knew the next day was going to be a long one.

Saturday (6 miles)12 long run miles

I ran my long run with Movin Shoes again because honestly, it’s just much easier to run with friends. I had originally planned on 11, but because we took a new route, I kind of got lost and ended up running a bit more than anticipated. It was still really fun since I got to explore new parts of my city.

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Sunday (10 miles)3.6 miles 

I intentionally run a little bit more than my scheduled mileage each day so my Sunday can be low in mileage. Ran my 3.6 miles and called it a week. 🙂

Total mileage (41 miles)41.2 miles


NAILED IT!

Thoughts for the week: I’m super happy I nailed my tempo run, but this upcoming week will be another uphill battle for me. I know I say that almost every week, but it’s true. This program truly puts me out of my running comfort zone and it may seem kind of pessimistic of me, but as each week passes, I’m just wondering when I’m going to call it quits. This week, I will be jumping from 41 miles to 47 miles. My tempo run increases to 8 miles + 1 mile WU and CD and my long run will be 15 miles. YIKES! If I make it through this week, I deserve some new running gear. LOL. Any suggestions on what I should get? 🙂

 

 

Posted in Marathon Mondays, Running, Thoughts, Training

Marathon Mondays – Week 6 of Chicago Marathon training

Well, this training method has been an interesting one. Here’s how week 6 went for me.

Scheduled mileageActual mileage

Monday (4 miles)4 miles

After my race the day before, I was in no shape to run anything more than what was expected of me. My quads were pretty sore, but I made it out to Movin’ Shoes for a group run and as soon as I started running, they felt better and 4 easy run miles flew by.

Tuesday (6 x 800 m with 400 m recovery; 1 mile WU and CD)6 x 800 m with 400 m recovery; 2.5 mile WU and 1.5 mile CD

This was my first real interval training. I was so unprepared for it that I brought my Hanson’s marathon method training book with me to work so I could look into the specifics of it before going into it. I think I did a pretty good job at it after looking at my pacing through the workout.

Interval 071817Although I did realize a few days later that my warm up (WU) and cool down (CD) were a bit longer than what was scheduled. Oops. It’s a work in progress. 🙂

Wednesday (Rest)Rest

I’ve been sleeping so much more ever since starting this program. I need my body to restore itself so if the program says rest, I’m going to rest.

Thursday (5 miles tempo run + 1 mile WU and CD)3 mile tempo run + 1 mile WU and CD

I missed the note at the bottom of my training plan where it said WUs and CDs were supposed to be a mile each. Since I did extra miles on Tuesday’s interval training, I decreased my tempo run mileage for the day. This was probably the worst run of the week. For tempo runs, I’m supposed to run around my marathon pace. Let’s just say I didn’t hit my marathon pace during any of the miles. 😦

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Friday (4 miles)4.3 miles

After Thursday’s terrible run, I took it easy and ran the 4 miles as a much more comfortable pace.

Saturday (6 miles)11 long run miles

I will probably be swapping Saturday and Sunday miles simply because my run group meets on Saturday and I lack motivation when there isn’t a group run. LOL. I ran with someone who’s around my pace and we managed 11 miles at a slightly faster pace. It wasn’t marathon pace, but I did feel very strong during this run. 🙂

Sunday (10 miles)4.7 miles

Because of extra mileage earlier in the week, I only had to run 4.7 easy miles to meet my weekly mileage.

Total mileage: (38 miles)38 milesIMG_1098

Thoughts for the week: Although, I’m super proud of myself for meeting such a high weekly mileage goal, I am worried I’m not performing as well as I’d like in terms of speed. Depending on how my next few tempo runs go, I may have to reassess my marathon goal of 4 hours. The Chicago marathon corral assignments came out this week and I’m already having serious doubts about whether I can actually reach a sub 4 time. I guess I’ll see in a few weeks when I do more tempo runs. 

How do you deal with doubt when training? Any tips for anyone who wants to get faster? 

Posted in BibRave Reviews, Discount Codes, Running

Staying hydrated – Orange Mud P.F.V product review & a discount code

Disclaimer: I received an OrangeMud Phone.Flask.Vest..to review as part of being a BibRave Pro. Learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (ambassador), and check out BibRave.com to review, find, and write race reviews! All opinions are my own. 

I am in full swing of marathon training and with the summer heat, a hydration pack was something I desperately needed. I had been scouring the sites in hopes of finding one that wasn’t too heavy and wouldn’t chafe in the humid temperatures. Luckily, BibRave gave us the opportunity to try Orange Mud’s Phone. Flask.Vest (P.F.V.) and I jumped at the chance.

The basics of the P.F.V.

Like the name implies, it’s a vest that can hold both your phone and a hydration flask. On the front of the vest, there are two main pockets – one for your flask and one for your phone. The flask is a soft flask that can hold up to 450 (15 oz) or 600 mL (20 oz) of fluids (it comes witht he 450 mL one) and deflates the more you drink from it. On one side of the vest, there is a shoulder pocket that you can store gels/chews/whatever nutrition you may need. There’s also a key clip that you can use to store your key while running. On the other side of the vest is a dust cover for the bite valve in case you don’t want it to get dirty while running. No one likes biting onto a valve that’s covered with dirt. Gross. On the back of the vest, there’s another pocket for a light jacket. The vest also has adjustable straps to tighten or loosen to your liking. Its cost? $99.95.

My experience

Weight – This vest is extremely lightweight. It may look like a lot to wear, but it’s actually not. Even after runs, I would just keep it on when I ran my errands.

Bounce – When I first tried this vest on, I found that it bounced a bit. After playing with it a bit, I found that if I tightened the straps enough, the bounce was very minimal and I had no problem with it. I ran a half marathon with it on and the vest didn’t bother me at all. I will note that other people that I’ve talked to have experienced more of a bounce. I am a bit more flat chested (I’m a B cup), which might be beneficial to me in this situation.

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Wearing the PFV during the Craft Classic Half marathon

Breathability – Even with the addition of the vest, my body didn’t seem to heat up. The material (mesh) that the vest is made out of makes it very breathable.

Chafe – This was such a big concern for me. With summer comes heat, humidity, and the high probability of chafing. I am super happy to report that I didn’t experience any chafing even after running a half marathon. I will note that I put bodyglide on my neck during that race because it was my first time running 13.1 miles with that vest on and I didn’t want to take any chances. I have run 6 miles in a sports bra with no bodyglide and the vest didn’t rub on me at all. Hooray! I will mention that I did wear a necklace once on a run and the vest rubbed the necklace against my collar bone. So just don’t wear necklaces while running and you’ll be good to go.

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On SportsBraSquad day!

Hydration and fuel – I do wish that the flask was a little larger so I could take it with me on longer runs. I usually finish up the water by mile 6 or 7. However, I can easily solve this issue by running by places that have water fountains. I can just refill the flask and continue on my run. On my half marathon, I stopped by 3 aid stations in addition to sipping water from my vest and that was just the perfect amount of water for me. I love using the pockets to hide my gels. This will definitely come in handy when I start running longer distances. 🙂

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Stay hydrated everyone!

Other – There was one thing I didn’t like about the vest, which was the fact that my flask initially leaks when I first use it. Although I don’t really feel the leak, it does soak part of the pocket, making it difficult to put my phone in the front pocket. (I have never put my phone in the front pocket since I have a flipbelt and use that instead; I also don’t want to overload the front of the vest). It doesn’t seem to leak at all after the initial leak and it might have to do with me adding too much water to the flask.

So there you have it, my review on the newest Orange Mud product, the Phone. Flask. Vest. You can bet that I’ll be wearing it a lot more often as the heat increases. If you are interested in any of their products, you can use the code “BRPPFV” for 10% off all their stuff. And if you have any questions, please feel free to ask me about it or check out any of the other BRPs’ reviews below. You can also join us on Tuesday, July 25th for our #bibchat on Twitter for a chance to win 1 of 2 P.F.V.s!

Fallon – Casey – Bradley – Heather – Angie

Posted in Marathon Mondays, Running, Training

Marathon Mondays – Week 5 Chicago Marathon training

I am officially done with week 5 of marathon training and boy am I pooped. POOPED I say. This was a crazy week as Hanson’s marathon method had me scheduled to run 39 miles! THIRTY NINE miles. The week before, I was only scheduled to run 24 miles. Why 39 miles? Oh lord. Anyway, here’s how last week went.

(Scheduled mileage)Actual mileage

Monday (4 miles) 9 miles 

My boyfriend was visiting for a week and I knew that I would not have enough time to do my scheduled interval training on Tuesday, which was estimated to be about 6 miles plus a 1.5 mile warm up and 1.5 mile cool down. Also, since I had a race on Sunday, the plan said to forgo interval training for that week. Because of all that, I woke up Monday morning thinking I’d just run 9 miles just like that. LOL. Thinking about it now, I still can’t believe I just decided to run 9 miles like it wasn’t a big deal or anything.  I think I’m running obsessed. Anyway, I broke up the distance up into two runs making the mileage a lot more manageable. I ran 3 miles earlier in the afternoon and after work, I met up with my run group and we ran another 6 miles. Thankfully, a friend who runs at a similar pace was there and she ran with me the entire way. Yay friends!

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After my 6 mile run with Movin’ Shoes

Tuesday (Speed training 12 x 400 m with 400 m recovery jog) – 4 miles 

Despite being exhausted from Monday’s run, I kept waking up in the middle of the night, which made Tuesday’s run tough. I had to pick up my boyfriend from the airport that morning so I squeezed in my run before his arrival. I was a bit late waking up so I ran 4 miles in the hot sun. Luckily, there was a lot of shade and breeze along the bay I ran around and it wasn’t too bad.

Wednesday (Rest)Rest

You bet I rested. Working out/running for 8 days without a break is killer. I wouldn’t recommend it. Do as I say, not as I do. I’m clearly (running) crazy.

Thursday (5 miles)5 miles

Thank goodness for scheduled group runs. It was the second Thursday of the month meaning it was Adventure Run day. I unfortunately ate something bad right before the run and ended up running with a crazy upset stomach. I struggled through those 5 miles, but I finished.

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Thank you to my friend Alex who ran with me and kept me company while I struggled with tummy issues

Friday (4 miles)4 miles

My car was having some issues so I had to get it to the repair shop stat. It took 45 min to get my car fixed so I decided to just go for a 4 mile jaunt around the block. LOL. You gotta do what you gotta do to get those miles in. 🙂

Saturday (8 miles) –  3 miles

Because I was running a half marathon on Sunday, I made this day a 3 mile run. I was supposed to log 16 miles over the weekend anyway so I just split the distances over the two days.

Sunday (8 miles)13.1 miles

Having run so many miles earlier in the week, I was a bit worried about running a half marathon and about having to run it at a faster pace than usual. Luckily, I survived the race and finished off the week with 13.1 miles. Woohoo! A re-cap of the race will be coming shortly. Stay tuned!

Total Mileage (39 miles)38.5 miles

Thought of the week: I will have to say that despite missing my target mileage by a half mile, I’m still extremely proud of myself. Prior to this, I had never run anything more than 32 miles a week and that was peak week for my NYC marathon training. It may not seem like much to a high volume runner, but it was all I could manage last year. I feel that this year, I’m much more prepared as a runner. 🙂

How is everyone’s training going? Did you race this past weekend?