Posted in Marathon Mondays, Running, Thoughts, Training

Marathon Mondays – Fatigue Setting In

Okay, so this post isn’t technically on a Monday, but you’ll have to forgive me. Life happened and I just kind of forgot to write.

Week 6 Honolulu Marathon Training

(Planned miles) Actual miles

Monday (4 miles) 6 miles – A sort of strong 6 miles run with Milestone Running. I ran 4 miles strong, stopped to sit down and take a photo, and pulled a hamstring. -_- Sigh. Some cursing ensued and then I hobbled/ran the last two miles back.

Tuesday (Rest) 6 sets of 10 kettle bell swings, 10 kettle bell levers, 10 inverted rows, and 10 incline push ups – Hello full body workout! This was a “as many reps as you can in 18 minutes.” Turns out, I can do 6 reps. It’s not very fast, but I was also trying to not kill my back with the kettle bells.

Wednesday (7 miles) 8 miles – Achieved the mileage in 2 runs. I ran 3 miles on my lunch break and an additional 5 miles with Fleet Feet San Diego. The latter run unfortunately wasn’t very good. I started out strong, but it was too fast. By the time I hit 4 miles, I was burning out and praying that I’d have a reason to stop and rest for a bit before running again. LOL. Luckily, I did run into someone so I got a breathing break.

By this day, I could feel that my body wasn’t dealing with the running very well. I was trying to go too fast and too hard. Then, that night, I experienced a really bad Charlie horse, one where I was sore for 24 hours even after thorough stretching and foam rolling.

Thursday (5 miles) 5 miles – Without a run group to meet up with and the fact that my calves were still really sore, I just dragged myself to the gym and ran an easy 5 miles on the treadmill.

Friday (Rest) 5 burpees followed by 5 back squats every minute on the minute – When my trainer put the schedule on the board, I thought, “Oh awesome. I’ll have a lot of rest time in between each set. I can knock out the burpees and squats in a few seconds. No problem.” Oh how naive I was. I maybe had 10 – 15 seconds to catch my breath and after the workout, I could barely feel my arms. I hate burpees. LOL.

Saturday (12 miles) 9 miles – Lululemon was celebrating 20 years of being open and in honor of their 10th year in San Diego, they hosted a little fun run relay. A team of 4 would cover about 20ish miles from Carlsbad to San Diego. 🙂 Registration included a Lululemon racer tank and a post finish brunch with mimosas. 🙂 I love their gear and at $45 a person, I figured why not. I was the last leg, which was about 4.5 miles. Since I needed a longer run, I decided to park at the finish and run to the start and then run back to the finish giving me 9 miles. What I didn’t anticipate though was the elevation going up to the start. LOL. IMG_9454

My relay team did end up getting first place so I guess I didn’t slow my team down too much. 🙂

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Sunday (Rest) Yoga – Every Sunday at Balboa park, there is a yoga meet up group. Everyone brings their own yoga mat and does yoga on the lawn. This was my first meet up and it was much harder doing yoga on an uneven surface. I think I’ll keep it in rotation for my workouts to mix things up a bit. 🙂

Total mileage: 28 miles/28 miles

So I hit my weekly mileage, but at the cost of some aches and pains. I also didn’t really have a real rest day, which I think my body really needed. This week, I will be focusing more on listening to my body and do easier runs. Wish me luck!

Question for you: Do you get Charlie horses? How do you get them to go away quickly? I tried holding onto the muscle that was spasming, but it didn’t help and it was extremely painful. 😦 

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Posted in Running, Thoughts, Training

Marathon Mondays – A Balancing Act

Disclaimer: I received an entry into the Honolulu Marathon 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.

Boom. I’ve just finished week 5 of Honolulu marathon training and I’m uhh kind of hitting a bump in the road. Since I started cross training, I haven’t really been able to do any runs 3+ miles without having to take a walk break. I’m not sure if it’s in my head, but I think I might be putting too much stress on my body or I’m not sleeping enough. Sigh.

Week 5 Honolulu Marathon Training

(Planned miles) Actual miles

Monday (4 miles) 4 miles – Happy Labor Day! Started the day with a gnarly hill run. The elevation increase was kind of quick from the start, which was probably not the smartest choice and my calves were just not dealing with them well. I had to walk quite a bit to stretch them out.

Tuesday (Rest) 4 rounds of 1 min burpees/box jumps, 1 min ball slams, 1 min V sit ups, 1 min rest – Burpees just kill me every time. Every single time. The day after this work out, my entire body was sore. LOL

Wednesday (6 miles) 6.5 miles – Broke this run into 2. Ran 2 on the treadmill and 4.5 outside. 🙂

Thursday (5 miles) 3.2 miles – The Craft Classic San Diego race has been having social runs at a brewery once a month to promote their race on October 21st. A friend was organizing the event and I couldn’t pass up a raffle that they were having with the run so I went. I ended up winning a gift card so it was a good day. 🙂 Heh.

Friday (Rest) Very quick stretching – I had recently bought a yoga mat and spent about 10 minutes trying to stretch before my long run on Saturday.

Saturday (10 miles) 11 mile long run with 1650 meter swim – Oh god. I went insane on Saturday. I had logged 14 miles over the week and was a mile short going into the weekend so I tacked on the extra mile in this run. Apparently, the stretching the night before did very little to help my running because for the first 4 miles, my legs were very tight and only 5 miles in did I finally hit my stride. 😦 I did feel very strong the rest of the way though. And of course, since I’m a glutton for punishment, I decided that running 11 miles wasn’t enough and added on about a 1 mile of swimming just for kicks. LOL.

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Sunday (Rest) Yoga – After having so much tightness in my calves, I decided to attend another yoga class. Even though I knew it was good for me, I still dreaded doing it. Even 30 minutes into class, I kept looking at my watch hoping the time would pass by faster. LOL. But the funny thing is that 55 minutes into yoga when the instructor told everyone to sit and touch their toes, I still couldn’t, but I could tell that I was making progress. The stretch in my hamstrings felt really soothing and for that brief 2 minutes, I felt happy at yoga. LOL.

Thoughts of the week: This week wasn’t super great for running, but I did hit the mileage. 25/25 miles! Weight lifting was tough, but swimming and yoga felt easier, which is a relief.

Oh and I’m a bit worried that weight training is hurting my running. Does anyone have experience with weight training and running? What should I do? Any suggestions?

Posted in Marathon Mondays, Running, Thoughts, Training

Marathon Mondays – Honolulu Marathon Training has officially begun!

Disclaimer: I received an entry into the Honolulu Marathon 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.

Marathon training has officially commenced and after some careful consideration, I have decided to opt in for a modified version of the Aftershokz Marathon Training Experience plan. This plan is available through the Motigo app and if you remember a few months back, I tried this app out at the Big Sur marathon. This app allowed my friends to leave me cheers at mile markers so even though they couldn’t be there, I could still hear their cheers. This time around, they’re expanding their repertoire by providing training plans. They partnered up with Aftershokz, BibRave, and the Honolulu marathon to create a plan that is tailored to beginners. The CMO of Aftershokz will be running her first marathon there so I figured that it’d be a nice beginner plan to use. The plan will also have some audio to go along with it so it’ll be interesting to hear what types of tips they may be give out during the training runs.

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I treat myself to capri suns after a workout. 🙂

I’m not technically a beginner marathoner anymore, but I thought this would be a fun one to use since I’m not really aiming for a specific time goal. Thank you to everyone who had suggested plans for me when I asked. I definitely looked into all of them and will actually be taking bits and pieces of them to add into this plan to tailor it to my needs. I will most likely not be following the Aftershokz plan too closely as not all of my social runs match up with their run days so I will modify the plan accordingly and keep you all updated here. 🙂

I’m also incorporating some cross training into this plan. I have plans to begin lifting a bit and I’ve even started swimming. 🙂 I thought I was going to die the first few laps of swimming, but after a few hundred meters, I got into the groove of things. 🙂

Hopefully, all of this cross training will help better prepare me for this marathon and for future marathons to come. I’ve even started to compile of marathons that I’d eventually want to run. So if you have a list that are on your bucket list that you’d want to share, please share away. 🙂 I’d be happy to add another one on my list.

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After my first 1600 meter swim 🙂

Now let week 1 of my Honolulu marathon training commence! 🙂

Posted in Marathon Mondays, Running

Marathon Mondays – Running in the Summer

Disclaimer: I received an entry into the Honolulu Marathon 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.

It’s almost been 2 weeks since I got back from Asia and holy moly, am I out of shape! LOL. It’s either that I ate too much during vacation or that it’s summer time and it’s humid as hell.

Okay okay. I know I shouldn’t be complaining because I live in Mediterranean climate, but I’m a spoiled brat when it comes to weather. I’ve never lived in extreme weather before so when summer time rolls around and it hits above 80F, I start to melt a little, which isn’t good because I expect it to be around 80F in Honolulu in December.

I haven’t officially started training for the marathon yet, but I am rebuilding my base slowly, but surely. It’s been difficult, but I’m not deterred. 🙂

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My official start date will most likely be in August, which gives me 3 to 4 months to train for my fourth marathon. I will not be racing this marathon for time as I’ve never been to Hawaii before and I want to be able to soak in the scenery as much as possible. I will also be training with my SO who will be running his very first marathon and uh, he is not a runner. He does not consider himself a runner and he probably never will. LOL. He’s doing this because it means a lot to me. 🙂

So this is where I need your help. I know there are ton of training plans out there and I want to find one that is suitable for my SO. He doesn’t have a significantly strong base and so I don’t want to deter him with a training plan that has 5 + days of running. I did that during my Chicago marathon training days and it was exhausting!

If you have a training plan that you really liked that didn’t have crazy high mileage, please comment with a link. 🙂 Also, if you have any tips on how to make this experience as pleasant as possible, please comment. 🙂 Thank you!

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My Movin Shoes Running Group

Also, on another note, if you would like to join me and run the Honolulu marathon, you can use the code “HNLBR2018” for 10% off your registration!

 

Posted in BibRave Reviews, Running, Thoughts, Training

Heat, humidity, and hills oh my – RnR San Diego Race Report

Disclaimer: I received an entry into the Rock N Roll San Diego Half Marathon 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 would like to have said that I crushed this race, but then I’d be lying. Conditions were not the best, but I conquered another half marathon and that’s all that matters. I also had a fantastic time at the expo so really, I have no real complaints. Without further ado, my race weekend report.

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Saturday – I had a pretty difficult 3 mile shake out run in the morning, but shrugged it off and headed to the expo. While I waiting to get onto the Trolley from the Old Town Trolley Station to get to the expo, I met a fellow San Diegan who followed me on Twitter and Strava. He asked me if I was “Mai,” I said “Yep,” and off we went to have a 15+ minute conversation about racing and after our talk, I’m considering picking up trail running. LOL. His name is Tim and he’s an ultra runner. You can find him on Twitter. 🙂

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After our talk, I entered the expo, picked up my bib, walked through the huge Brooks section, took some awesome photos at their photo booth and made my way over to the HoneyStinger booth where I volunteered there for 2 hours. I ran into a lot of people I knew at the booth and had a great time chatting with other runners. 🙂IMG_6670

I then met up with BibRave Pro Founders Tim and Jessica Murphy, and fellow BibRave Pros Bridget and Steph for lunch at Rustic Root. After lunch, I headed back to the expo, walked around some more and ended up dropping over $100 on this pretty little Orange Mud product for my Mt. Fuji hike in July. No way am I dying from dehydration. LOL. Anyway, that was all the excitement from the expo. 🙂 I called it an early night and passed out at 8:30 pm.

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Race day – I woke up at 4 am and was out the door by 4:15 am. I parked at the trolley station again and made my way down with very no issues. From the trolley stop, it was about a 1.5 mile and a half walk up to the start, which was a nice warm up walk. 🙂 I met up with friends and at 6:25 am, I crossed the start line. From the start of the race, I could feel that something was off. It was taking a lot more effort to run and when the sun came out around 7 am, I knew I was toast. I had forgotten my visor and my sunglasses so for a good portion of the race, I was squinting and wiping the sweat off my brow. Sigh.

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The course itself was very fun. You start off fairly flat and then head downhill. Another mile later, you get some rolling hills. I saw the mile 4.5 bar with their assortment of alcoholic beverages. I ran the blue mile a little bit later, where volunteers hold up flags and there are posters of US troops that have fallen lined along the road. By mile 7, I was pretty much toast. My left foot was tingling non-stop and the ball of my right foot felt like a big blister was coming on. I started overheating and had to pour a few cups of water over my head to cool down and around mile 9, I started doing a run/walk. At mile 10.5, we hit the last really large hill and it was mostly downhill from there. Taiko drummers were performing at the top to keep us going and goodness, I needed every little bit of it. Running downhill was easier, but I was running out of gas.

Then, an angel by the name of Vanessa, came running by. LOL. She’s not really an angel, but in this scenario, she was mine. 😛 Vanessa was someone I met through a friend and when she ran by me, she told me she’d run with me. I didn’t want to slow her down since I knew she ran faster than me, but she insisted that she would stay with me. For the rest of the miles, she stayed with my pace and kept me going with her pep talks. I pushed when I didn’t think I could anymore and was able to stay at a moderate pace. I crossed the finish line destroyed, but because of her, I was able to complete the course in under 2 hours, which was my original goal. Thanks to her, I finished it in 1:59:13, which I most definitely recorded in my Athlinks profile. 🙂

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Not every race is going to perfect and this race was a perfect example of that. But I learned a lot from this experience. I learned that some days, you just have bad runs and some of those days are during races. But even on those days, you can still achieve a lot if you have the right people beside you. 🙂

Question for you: Have you ever had a bad race and if you have, how did you recover from it? 

Side note: Today is Global Running day and the Rock N Roll Race Series is having a sale! If you want to run one of these, this is probably the best day to sign up for one. 🙂

Posted in Running, Thoughts

Races for 2018 Coming Right Up – Rock N Roll Las Vegas

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Hello Sin City!

Disclaimer: I received an entry into the Rock N Roll Las Vegas Half Marathon 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 keep meaning to post about this race, but I kept forgetting. 🙂 If you couldn’t tell from the title, I will be running the Rock N Roll Vegas Half marathon again this year. 🙂 Hooray!

Details

Date: November 10th – 11th, 2018

Location: Las Vegas, Nevada

Distances: 5k, 10k, Half marathon, Full Marathon

Price: $59.99 (5k) to $159.99 (Full)

The Rock N Roll Las Vegas race is a super unique one in that you get to race at night and on the Las Vegas strip no less. They only shut down the strip two times a year – New Years eve and the night of the RnR Vegas race. The entire race is a fantastic experience and this year, they’re celebrating their 10th anniversary of the race.

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From last year’s race 🙂 

Since it’s a night race, a lot of people wear glow in the dark items and since it’s sin city, a lot of runners dress up in costume. 🙂 At the start line, every wave gets a countdown and a little fire show and during the course, there are banners lit up in neon with messages that people had written at the expo. Then, you have all the lights coming from the hotels and just the main part of the strip. With all the lights on the strip, you wouldn’t really notice that it’s at night. LOL.

This race is a great one to run with a bunch of your friends and make a weekend out of it. Come out on Thursday, party on Friday and Saturday, and still have enough time to recuperate on Sunday for your race in the evening. LOL. I wasn’t in the best place last year when I ran it so I missed out on a lot of the festivities, but this year, I will be back and I plan on staying until at least Monday to recover. There’s no way I’m driving home immediately after the race. That was a mistake. LOL.

If you think that maybe a half marathon is too much, they also have a 5k on Saturday and a 10k on Sunday. 🙂 That way, you can still join in on their 10th year festivities. 🙂

Unfortunately, there is no discount code for the Vegas races, but if you’re interested in any other Rock N Roll race, you can use the code “RNRBRP2018” for $15 off the half or full registration. 

Posted in Running, Training

Countdown to the San Diego Rock N Roll Half Marathon

Disclaimer: I received an entry into the Rock N Roll San Diego Half Marathon 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

It’s almost a year later and I find myself counting down to my 4th San Diego Rock N Roll Half marathon. 🙂 4 years ago, this was my first half marathon. FOUR. I actually had to look back at my first medal to see what year it was. LOL.

Even as I type this, I am in just disbelief that it has already been 4 years since I embarked on this crazy running journey and 21 half marathons, 3 marathon, and 1 very hilly 21 mile race later, I am ready to run my 22nd half. LOL.

I remember the first time I went to the Health and Fitness Expo 4 years ago. I was in awe at how big the expo was. I had taken the day off from work and went with my brother to the expo and walked around and around. I played games that some vendors had, grabbed the free snacks, and got my very first medal rack and that very first medal rack led me to my Instagram and Twitter Handle: Once_upon_a_run. 🙂

Now that’s enough walking down memory lane. In 7 days, I will be running through the streets of Downtown San Diego once again. I will start out near the San Diego Zoo and head through the neighborhoods of Hillcrest and Normal Heights where there will be drag queens and the neighborhood bar at mile 4 where neighbors wake up early just to serve you shots of tequila and whiskey. LOL. I’ll run through North Park, where a lot of great food is at and then make my way towards the downhill finish in Downtown San Diego by the Waterfront. 🙂

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Training on the my old stomping grounds at UCSD

My game plan for this upcoming week will hopefully be a lot of rest and stretching. I haven’t race a half since January and I think I’m a little out of practice. Most of my training runs are at a much slower pace and I just checked my course PR on Athlinks and it was a 1:54:11. Crap. My muscles have been a lot tighter this year than they’ve ever been in the past so I’m trying to stretch as much as I can and foam roll after my runs. I can’t even touch my toes anymore! Ack. My hope is to at least stay ahead of the 2 hour sub half marathon crowd. Des Linden, the 2018 female Boston marathon winner and also a San Diego native, will actually be pacing the 2 hour half marathoners and I hope that I can stay ahead of that group, finish, and then wait around to see Des cross the finish line. She’ll also be at the expo on Friday and Saturday so I’m hoping to see her one of the days. Eek! So excited.

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Foam rolling

Wish me luck!

If you’re into doing things last minute and want to sign up online, you still can until Sunday night! You can use code “RNRBRP2018” for $15 off either the half or full marathon. This code works on most Rock N Roll races (excluding Vegas) 🙂 

Question for you: What stretching tips do you have? Foam rolling? Post recovery tips are greatly appreciated! 🙂