Monday, December 26, 2011

Week Twelve: Disney Princess Half Marathon Training

Week Twelve

Monday – chair squats

I went to a rally with my new Tupperware team (YES I'm a consultant now!! If you need/want me!) and we were standing up to clap for people every 10 seconds. I'd say that worked out to at least 30 full minutes of chair squats!

30 min

Tuesday – house cleaning

Vacuuming, rearranging furniture and hosting a Tupperware party for a few hours. Lots of moving around!

30 mins

Wednesday – walking/jogging/chasing kids etc.

Running on 3 days of little sleep, I was exhausted and close to coming down with something. I didn't want to over exert myself so I decided to get my 30 minutes in by walking around the gym in my school during our "outside time" (it was raining). I walked in a oval around the gym for 30 mins, but also jogged, chased kids, ran away from kids, danced to Christmas music, kicked soccer balls, threw basketballs and I'm sure more - all while still walking my loops.

30 mins – 1.5 miles est. (20:00/mi pace)

Thursday – calf raises

 I had some work to do at home, so I did seated calf raises while I was sitting at my computer and standing calf raises while taking the dogs out or waiting for something to come out of the printer. If I had to stop for any reason, I'd jog in place. There were also a few trips up and down the stairs. I made sure I was constantly moving for the entire 30 minutes.

30 mins

Friday – walk

Was supposed to run, but I forgot about it because I lost track of time and I was so exhausted from serious lack of sleep this week. I was so busy the entire day, so I didn’t even have time to do this until 11:30pm. Because of that, I walked for 30 mins instead of a run. I walked at a 2.5 speed at 2.0 incline for 5 mins, then upped the incline .5 every minute up to 10, then came back down again until I hit 30 mins. I wasn’t wearing my heart rate monitor, but I checked it a few times with the hand monitors on the treadmill and I’m pretty sure my heart rate was just as high during the incline walking as it is during my runs! Good to know!

30 mins

Saturday – wrapping presents

Man, what an arm workout! The reaching, the pulling, the carrying to the tree, etc. This should be a weekly workout, not a yearly one!

Sunday – long run – 3 miles

After a week of no running and barely getting in my 30 minutes of exercise each day, I finally ran. It wasn't pretty. Thank god I only had to do 3 miles. I was tired, lazy and wiped out from lack of sleep this week! Hopefully next week I can get back on track and kick it up a notch! Only 9 more weeks til my half marathon!

Total: 3 miles – 53:25 (17:46/mi pace)

I hope everyone had a wonderful holiday!! I had another crazy busy week! I need a nap! I can’t wait for the New Year! This next week is going to be just as busy! I hope things settle down in “the twelve”.

62 days until the Disney Princess Half Marathon!

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Week Eleven: Disney Princess Half Marathon Training

Week Eleven

Monday – stretching, foam rolling, light yoga

After my ultimate leg workout plus run/walk this past weekend, my legs were really sore. I needed to stretch and foam roll things out. I also did a few yoga positions to loosen up my hips.

30 min

Tuesday – run

I decided I needed to amp up the treadmill work since I've been relying on it for easy workouts and not really benefiting from it. Put it up to 2 incline to mimic outside running. I used to see how that measured up. 

I did run/walk intervals and realized that this incline stuff isn't fun. My left calf felt so tight, I had to hop off the treadmill several times to try and stretch it out. I started getting chills and decided to end it at 30 mins instead of my usual 40. I need to hydrate better!

30:00 mins – 1.78 miles  (16:51/mi)

Wednesday – butt workout

After a long day and night, I was crazy tired and I didn't want to do a strenuous workout that would wake me up and make it tougher for me to get to sleep, so I did butt clenches while checking e-mails. My butt hurt the next day, so it worked!

30 mins

Thursday –run

I didn't want to run. I was too tired. Getting dressed was half the battle, so I got dressed and told myself to at least walk. Then I wrote out my run/walk interval plan. And I ran. I started at a 2% incline, but after the warm up I put it down to 1% since I was planning on doing a speed pyramid. I didn’t even notice the incline! I guess when you bump it down from 2%, 1% doesn’t seem like anything. It really isn’t, but when you add it after months of no incline, you feel it! This was also the first run that I almost threw up. (not counting the 5K I did after being sick all weekend.) I took too much water on a walk interval and had to cut a run interval short. Guess I know how hard I need to push myself in future workouts to kick my own ass!

30 min run time: 2.05 miles (14:38/mi pace)

40:00 mins – 2.52 miles (15:53/mi pace)

Friday – wii tennis

I needed to get my 30 minutes in for the day and I started playing wii tennis and I couldn’t stop! I made it to the PRO level!

50 mins

Saturday – walk

I went to the Wrentham outlets with a friend and we went shopping. I tracked the distance with Runkeeper on my cellphone. I paused it every time we went into a store so I’m sure we walked way more than what was tracked, especially since we were out there for about 1.5 hours and we only tracked 32 mins

1.52 miles – 32:02

Sunday – long run – 8 miles

I was doing the Somerville Jingle Bell 5K today and knew I wouldn’t want to do 5 miles after the race, so I decided to do at least 2 before the race. We all met at a friend’s house that was about 1 mile away from the race. I did 6 laps around the block at my friend’s house to get me to 2 miles. Then we walked about a mile to the race. By that time I had already done a 5K. I knew after the race, I’d only need to do 2 more miles! One mile walking back and one more mile around her block. I was set.

3.29 miles – 1:00:06 (18:17/mi pace)

Somerville Jingle Bell 5K – Race report coming soon. I promise. But it was awesome. They did a great job and I will most definitely support their races in the future!

Official time: 50:08

3.18 miles – 50:12* (15:46/mi pace) *(Garmin)

We walked home and I was surprised to find that I was at 7.5 miles and all I needed to do was .5 miles around the block. I had been taking it easy on my legs for the week so I wasn’t so dead on long run day. I started hurting around mile 7, but compared to my last long run, where I was whining and limping at mile 5, I consider this a success!

1.57 miles – 31:27 (20:05/mile pace)

I also learned that although it’s horrendous, an ice bath is actually pretty helpful. My legs didn’t hurt at all the day after my ice bath, but this time, I didn’t partake in cold ice torture, and my legs hurt me for 2 full days.

Total: 8.01 miles – 2:21:51 (17:39/mi pace)

What a week! I’ve been so busy I haven’t had time to even post this! I’ve been keeping track of everything on dailymile, so I can go back and fill in the blanks. In just a few days I’ll be posting THIS week’s update!

Dec 12- Dec 18

69 days until the Disney Princess Half Marathon!
(as of Monday, Dec 19th)

Monday, December 12, 2011

Week Ten: Disney Princess Half Marathon Training

Week Ten

Monday – swim

Went swimming for the first time since September. More specifically the last time I swam was during my triathlon! After a few laps, I took the time to stretch out my hips while I was in the water. I also noticed that the breaststroke worked my hips out in a different way since most of my exercise has come from running and it’s the same motion over and over. Must keep swimming in the mix!

1150 yards – 32:30 min

Tuesday – run

Kept pretty good pace considering I was outside. I've been running slower outside than I do on the treadmill so I was surprised to see this pace.

I had a magical moment: I was powering up a hill, listening to "Friday" by Rebecca Black (don't judge), and I got beeped at by a guy with a Red Sox sticker on his car. I don't know for sure, but I'm going to assume it was a beep of approval. And I approve of his choice of sports team. Call me.

39:01 mins – 2.38 miles  (16:22/mi)

Wednesday – Wii tennis & bowling

Why don’t I play this more often? It’s really fun and you can work up a sweat if you really get into and don’t just stand there. Downside. All the work is done with my dominant arm, so that gets worked out, sore & tired while the other gets nothing. I should switch it up sometimes to see if I can play left-handed.

40 mins

Thursday –run clinic & Wii tennis

I attended a run clinic at my gym. There was more talking than there was running. The coach told us a lot of stuff that he learned over the years of being a runner and a coach. Also watched us run short distances and told us how we could improve. I got something out of it and if he created a running club, I’d join so I could get more advice on how to get better at this thing I call running.

Then I came home and played Wii Tennis again.

30 mins

Friday – Mall walking

Yup, that happened. I went to dinner with my mom and a friend and we walked 3 loops around the mall after dinner. Not gonna lie, I might do it again. It’s a fairly good walking workout – better than the treadmill – and I don’t have to be outside in the cold! Too bad I can’t run inside. Although I suppose that’s what the track at my gym is for.

35 mins - 1.3 miles

Saturday – Jonathon’s Fitness workout

I did @jonathonsfitnes's favorite total body workout - 10 min legs, 10 min arms, 10 min abs. The arms one was too easy, I obviously need heavier weights. But I can see this being a staple to my workouts! It made me sweat and I could feel the burn! I loved it!

Sunday – long run – 3 miles

This was a clusterfluff of 3 miles. I did the Winter Classic 5K, my first DNF, and I don’t even want to talk about it anymore. You can read the race report if you haven’t already.

0.85 miles – 12:50 (15:05/mi pace), 

Came home from the race and took the dogs for a walk to finish the 3 miles for the day. Jogged a few times when the dogs wanted to go faster, but when they started to get crazy and pull, I walked again.

2.34 miles – 43:50 (18:45/mi pace)

Total: 3.19 miles – 56:40 (17:45/mi pace)

This race was the icing on the cake. This was the 3rd race where I’ve gotten no support on the course as far as directions for which way to go or water stations and one of them was even starting to take down the finish line area as I crossed and there were still people behind me – and that was the race that not only accepted, but welcomed walkers and their dogs.  I started a campaign called No Runners Left Behind because races need to be aware that not everyone who registers for a race will finish before 30 minutes or even 45 or even 60 (gasp!). If races have time constraints, they should post them on their registration page and let people decide if they can achieve that time before registering, not after the race when they get lost because all the volunteers have gone home. I'm hoping to get more race directors and organizations on board with this campaign so more people will enjoy races and not feel excluded in something they are doing to make themselves healthier.

Dec 5 - Dec 11

76 days until the Disney Princess Half Marathon!

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Winter Classic 5K Race Report - My first DNF

Back in September I registered for the Winter Classic 5K road race in Cambridge, MA. I was really excited about it because not only did they boast a long sleeve t-shirt, they were also giving away a fleece hat for runners that signed up for the race before a certain deadline. You know me and fun gimmicks like that! Sign me up!

Two previous races in the past 2 months, I had gotten lost on the course due to poor organization on the race’s behalf. There was no support out on the course for runners towards the back of the pack. I asked a few volunteers if they had a race course map. They didn’t know what I was talking about. I asked them if the race director was around so I could ask him what his plans were for support out on the course. They said he was busy somewhere but they didn’t know where he was. I understand that. When I volunteered at the Oktoberfest Cambridge 5K, the race director was being pulled in 10 different directions. He was busy. So I went out there and hoped for the best. I hoped I didn’t get lost.

 The MC announced the start of the race and stated, "All runners and walkers please make your way to the start line". I also heard a few people talking about being walkers. I figured everything would work out.

All smiles before the race!
Gathering at the start
I started out and, although I was running, I was slower than most people. I always have been. But I'm a runner nonetheless. As we turned the corner onto Albany Street, the cop car following the race almost hit me as it passed by me to keep up with the other runners. By the time I turned onto Mass Ave, I was alone and there was no more traffic control. I saw one of the cops who was directing traffic get back into his car and drive away. I was still behind him. The course looped around passed the finish area within the first mile. As I got to that area, there were about 5 police officers waiting for the racers to come back into the finish area. As I got to them, I said, "Where did every one go?" He laughed at me. I said "No, really. I'm in the race, which way did they go?" He laughed again and pointed towards the finish and said, "The finish is over there". I said, "I can see that, but which way did the racers GO? What direction?" He pointed over his shoulder and said "Up that way". I asked if he knew which streets or had an idea of the course directions. He was useless.

Since this was the 3rd race in a row where the race didn't leave volunteers or directions out on the course to let runners know where to go I was annoyed at the lack of respect I was getting from this race as well as the others. I paid my money to participate in this race. There was nothing on the website stating that this was for runners only and only runners who can finish faster than the cop car behind them can drive. And I certainly didn't pay money to be laughed at.

I went back to the start and asked for the race director. A volunteer said that she didn't know where he was and asked if I really needed to talk to him. I said yes and she immediately turned to her left and said to the man standing about 10 feet away from her, "She needs to talk to you". Amazing. I told him what had happened and he argued with me saying that the event was only for runners because they had a time constraint. I asked why it wasn't specified on the website and why the MC had welcomed "runners and walkers" to the start not even 15 minutes earlier. He said that they were only allowed 45 minutes for the race. That doesn't explain why a cop car passed me within the first 6 minutes of the race when we had just passed the half-mile mark. I asked about course directions and letting people know where to go for the route. The race director said it was clearly marked. I informed him that it wasn't. He said that he went out that morning and did it. I asked him where or if the volunteers had maybe brought the directions with them as they finished. He told me that it was spray painted on the street. It was nowhere on the street that I saw. He said that I should have been able to just follow the pack of runners for my directions. I tried. I really tried. But I'm not as fast as "the pack".

As a paying participant, I should have been given the same opportunity to finish the race as everyone else. I may not have been the winner of the race, and I probably never will be, but I paid my $28 just like everyone else. They still got my money and I didn't get to race because there was no support for me and no one directing me where to go like there was for the lead runner or anyone else running. That's not fair to me or anyone else who gets left behind in races.

I sent an email to the e-mail address listed on their registration website explain what happened at the race and I asked for a full refund since I was unable to complete the race. In the e-mail I informed them that I spoke with the race director, and although he avoided answering my request for a refund 3 times, he finally said that if I emailed, they'd give me a refund. I told him I appreciated it and said thank you several times and he said "Yeah, ok" and went back to getting ready for the lead runner to arrive at the finish. Did I feel like he was brushing me off? Yes. Do I think he told me I'd get a refund just to get me away from him? Yes. Do I think I'll ever get my refund? No. 

But I'd like to hope that there is someone in that organization that will actually do the right thing. [EDIT - 2 hours after sending an email requesting a refund, I received an email back:
Hi Sara,
We have just processed your refund with the online registration company racewire. They said it takes 2-3 business days to clear on their site. We are sorry you were dissatisfied with your experience at today's event and appreciate the feedback you gave us on race day. It will help us to continuously improve our event.
I'm impressed with their professionalism and I appreciate their prompt response. I apologize to them for being quick to assume that they wouldn't be receptive to my request.]

I came home and started a campaign for No Runners Left Behind to help prevent this from happening again. Please go like the Facebook page and tell everyone you know! It happens all the time and it's a shame that race directors only think about the winners and the records that might be broken during their race. We all pay the same fee for the race. Why don't we all get the same treatment?

Monday, December 5, 2011

Week Nine: Disney Princess Half Marathon Training

Week Nine

Monday – yoga

I didn't feel comfortable during this class. I just wasn't centered, zoned in, etc. My body was aching and I just couldn't get the stretches comfortably and hold them to actually help me. I felt like I was forcing it each time. Spent a lot of time in downward dog or child's pose to rest. But I still sweat like a crazy person, so I guess I was doing something right.

Tuesday – run

I’m working on doing more running and less walking in my intervals. Also working on picking up the speed. I used to “run” at 4.0, so I think this is an improvement.

5 min warm up at 2.8
3 min run x5 (2 at 4.3, 3 at 4.4) with 2 min walks (at 3.0) in between
5 min run at 4.3
5 min cool down at 3.0 

Entire workout 40 mins – 2.42 miles (16:32/mi)

This run pushed me over the 500-mile mark for 2011. 500 miles of running, biking, swimming, elliptical-ing, walking and whatever else I did. Wonder how far I can get by the end of the year!

30 mins – 1.946 miles  (15:24/mi)

Wednesday – rest

This was my last rest day for a long time. I joined the 30 For 60 Challenge and decided to fit exercise into my life every day for the months of December and January. No rest days. I love rest days. I’ll miss them. But I’ll do my best to make my “rest days” active and do at least 30 minutes of something active every day to stay on track.

Thursday –run

Speed pyramid workout in which I got up to 6.5mph as my fast peak. That may seem like a walk in the park to most runners, but that’s pretty damn fast for me. It worked out to one of my fastest paces.

Entire workout 40 mins – 2.608 miles (15:20/mi)

30 mins – 2.132 miles  (14:04/mi)

Friday – spin

I hadn’t been to a spin class since September and this class most certainly kicked my butt. I guess I need to put it on my schedule more often. Though maybe not in between run days next time - my legs certainly got a beating this week.

Saturday – long run – 7 miles

Reindeer Run 5K – 3.14 miles in 51:44

After the race, my friend and I did another larger loop around the 5K course for almost 4 miles to add up to the 7 miles needed for the long run. There was more walking and less running during this portion of my run for today. The last 2 miles or so were really slow and painful. I have to thank my friend Beth for sticking with me for the last 4 miles. They were pretty unbearable and I was hurting towards the end of it.

In the car ride home, I talked crazy talk about taking an ice bath.

And then I did it.

And there is video proof: First Ice Bath

7.08 miles – 2:07: (16:30/mi pace)

Sunday – house work

I had to get 30 minutes in today and I was exhausted from my 7 miles the day before. So I decided to count my vacuuming, floor scrubbing & laundry as my activity for the day.

house work - 55 min

My legs are still a little sore from Saturday’s long run. I’m a little nervous about the next long run of 8 miles and the 9 mile one after that! Here’s hoping I can survive the next 2 months with no rest days!

Nov 28- Dec 4

84 days until the Disney Princess Half Marathon!

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Reindeer Run 5K Race Report

Back in October I signed up for a slew of 5Ks throughout the fall and winter. And technically, none of them are IN winter. They are all winter themed but they all fall on the weekends before the 22nd of December. I love themed 5Ks and ones that promise a fun t-shirt, so I was psyched for my December races.

It's actually a cute shirt!
This was the first one on the list. It was put on by the Beverly YMCA and they asked people to dress up for the race. I saw lots of Santas, reindeers, elves, candy canes and one guy dressed up as the nutcracker with a huge cylinder around him. He ran the entire race like that. He was faster than me too.

It was a beautiful day for a race. There wasn’t a cloud in the sky and although it was a little chilly at 36 degrees, most of the course was in the sun and I warmed up quick.

The start line was in the middle of the street behind the YMCA and I was amused that they just spray-painted it onto the street. It was a good idea though, it let everyone know where to be!

A little ways into the race, there was a man playing Christmas music on his porch for the racers. His wife was hanging Christmas decorations and singing. They weren’t the only ones out in front of their house to support the racers. It was nice to see the community come out to support everyone.

 I had checked out the course elevation online before the race, and it looked pretty flat. But it was actually quite hilly. The good thing though was that what goes up, must come down!

During the race, I looked to my side and I saw a familiar face. Carolyn from Today is the Tomorrow was running along side me with her dogs! We hadn’t met before, but we had been talking all summer about how we should meet up and a race or try to do some biking together as she was also training for a triathlon! I recognized her dogs before I recognized her and I said “Are you by any chance Carolyn?” She said, “Yes, are you Sara?” She had seen me walking over to the race packet pick up area, but was in her car and didn’t get a change to say hi before the race. We ran together for a little while before she had to back track and find her husband because she didn’t want him to get lost on the course.

Which brings me to my next point. If a race advertises that both runners and walkers are welcome to participate in the race, then the volunteers and/or race directional should be left out on the course until the FINAL racer – whether he or she is a walker OR runner – has completed the course. When I volunteered at the Cambridge 5K Oktoberfest, we had someone ride behind the final racer on a bike and let volunteers know that the last racer had passed them. Only THEN did we leave our posts. Not when we thought maybe everyone was done. When we were SURE everyone had passed that one point. No racer was left behind.

My only complaint about this race was that racers were left behind.

By the time I got towards the end of the race, I was on my own. I learned my lesson from the last race that this happened to me and I brought the race’s course map with me. If I hadn’t, I wouldn’t have known which way to go. There was a major intersection where racers were supposed to cross the road and go left. But there was no one in sight. I checked the map and made sure I was going the right way. A little ways up, I saw a volunteer walking back towards the race finish area. Thanks man.

There was a few volunteers standing at a corner further along, and my faith was restored in the volunteers, until I found out later that they were supposedly the water station. They had no water. Planning is everything. If you have 800 racers, have enough water for 800 racers. Just an FYI. I brought my own and rarely take water from water stations, but there were people behind me and they might have needed or wanted water.

As I was nearing the finish line, the map got a little confusing and I had no idea where to go. I actually saw a car filled with volunteers and I motioned to them to ask where I should go. They pointed me in the right direction. Kinda. I saw one of them start to get out of the car to help me before the driver took off with the door partially opened. Way to go, dude. I thank the volunteer that wanted to get out and help me. I ridicule the ass who was driving the car and didn’t care about a lost racer OR a volunteer that could have been injured in that whole process.

Once I finally found the finish line (and I think I still went the wrong way) they asked me if I knew if anyone else was behind me. I told them yes, but they might be a while since there was no one out on the course telling them where to go. I asked them where the race director was so I could let him know about the problem and they didn’t seem to care. So, race director of the Reindeer Run in Beverly, MA: There was a problem.

I gave up at that point and just met up with my friend, Beth.

A few minutes later I saw Carolyn cross the finish and we took a picture as well.

Official time: 3.14 miles - 51:59
Garmin time: 3.14 miles - 51:44

I then continued on for another 3.94 miles to total 7.08 for the day since it was my “long run” day and I needed to do 7 miles. Beth kept me company for the second run and it was nice to chat with someone to help the time pass more quickly. She also motivated me when I started to whine. There was a lot more walking than there was running, but she made sure I kept going. If I had been alone, I might have quit half way through and taken a shorter route back to my car. I told her many times that day, but I’ll say it again here: Thanks for tagging along with me Beth!! Maybe I can convince her to do 8 miles with me in a few weeks!

On the way home, we discussed ice baths. It was a comical conversation and when I got home, I actually took the plunge, which apparently turned into an even funnier video opportunity.

In case you missed it, you can check out the entire ice bath experience right here: My First Ice Bath
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...