Sunday, January 29, 2012

Running, pizza, and bad TV

My husband usually works on Sundays so I have developed a routine to take advantage of my alone time and the only day of the week I don't have any obligations. I get up (no alarm), do my long run, eat pizza or something similarly bad, and watch TV on the couch while catching up on running blogs.

Today I was carrying out this much-loved ritual, but TV programmers have decided to put on the most boring, uninteresting television possible. Armageddon for the third time this week? Hours of telethons and infomercials? Ugh.

Even finding something to watch during my long run was a challenge. The only viable options were Golden Girls, or Dodgeball. I tried one of the Kardashian shows for a few minutes but I couldn't take it. You get mad that paparazzi are videotaping you working out, when you have E! cameras videotaping you working out anyway for your show? What is your deal?

Despite the Kardashian ridiculousness I made it through 12 miles. Some hamstring pain but not bad. PT says its good to keep running so blood will come to the area and take away the scar tissue. I have about 8 pretty little bruises from my second ASTYM session. Luckily it is not shorts season, my leg is not looking so hot right now.

I made cookies so now the house smells yummy. I put in 4 1/2 hours of exercise this weekend so I am feeling no pizza or cookie guilt. Plus I fit back into some work slacks that I haven't been able to wear for over a year. Whoo-hoo!

Ok I am off to eat more pizza and cookies. And watch Armageddon. Fingers crossed something better comes on after.

Thursday, January 26, 2012


Last October I ran the Portland Marathon Half (that is how they say it, not Portland Half-Marathon). It was a very fun race and the first time I ran 13.1 miles straight with no walking. So, it holds a special place in my heart.

I keep getting emails that the 2012 Marathon and Half are filling up, and the Half will close January 31st. While I would enjoy doing it again, the registration fee is $125. It is hard to justify paying $125 to run a half-marathon...that is a lot of money! I could run 2-3 half-marathons for that price. So is it worth it?

Now that we have less disposable income I have to really analyze if I want to pay money to run. I can run 13.1 miles for free anytime I want. So what am I getting for my money? And how much is too much to pay for something I can do for free?

I know that races are great experiences and you can run with friends/family, try for PRs, use them as an excuse to travel, etc. But I would be running this course solo, and it is 30 minutes away so no travel involved. I suppose I could try for a PR, but last time it was raining for several miles which always slows me down because I'm so nervous about slipping.

I better decide soon...only 5 registration days left!

How much are you willing to pay for a race?

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

11 Random Things

I was tagged by Julie at You Just Have To Tri! for the 11 Random Things post that is going around. Thanks Julie!

The rules of this post: (disclaimer I did not make them so don’t yell at me for them being difficult)

1.Post these rules.
2.You must post 11 random things about yourself.
3.Answer the questions set for you in their post.
4.Create 11 new questions for the people you tag to answer.
5.Go to their blog (FB page or other Social site) and tell them you’ve tagged them.
6.No stuff in the tagging section about you are tagged if you are reading this. You legitimately have to tag people!

11 random things about me:

1. I have a Type-A personality. I just discovered this when I had to take a personality test for a class I am taking in grad school.
2. I have never travelled outside of North America.
3. I currently weigh about 70 lbs less than I did in high school/college.
4. My husband and I met on 9/6/05 and got married on 9/6/08. I didn’t want to have two different anniversaries. Maybe this is related to being Type-A...
5. My sister-in-law was one of my best friends in high school. We married brothers.
6. I have a rock from the Grand Canyon and a piece of the wall from inside the Empire State Building (they were doing construction). I like to take keepsakes when I travel.
7. When I was 15 I went on a mission trip to Tecate, Mexico. Our toilet was a hole in a piece of wood, over a hole in the ground. I went to the bathroom once a day the entire time we were there.
8. My first dog died on Thanksgiving, my grandma died on New Years Eve, and one of my best friends from college died 3 days before Valentine’s Day. Holidays stress me out a little.
9. I have never gotten a traffic ticket. I did get 2 parking tickets in college.
10. I only eat meat about once a month. I am not a vegetarian, I just don’t like meat that much.
11. I have to keep a fan on when I sleep. One summer about 10 years ago it was so hot I had to sleep with a fan on my night stand. At first the noise drove me crazy, but then I got used to it. And now I can’t sleep without it.

My questions from Julie:

1. Name 1 blogger would like to meet.
Janae from Hungry Runner Girl, she is the only person I know who loves food as much, if not more, than me!
2. Do you log your workouts? If so where or how?
Yes, I have an Excel training log spreadsheet that I keep religiously.
3. What is your favorite thing to do on a Friday or Saturday night?
Do homework (assignments are always due Sunday), hang out with my husband if he is not working. He usually is.
4. What are you addicted to?
Diet coke.
5. Do you share your blog with everyone?
Nope. Only my husband knows about it. And other bloggers. But no one else in real life.
6. Tell me one way you are different then you were 10 years ago.
I was extremely shy and self-conscious.
7. Hot, medium, or mild, how spicy do you like your food?
8. I’ve met people who barley break a bead when they workout and I’m always amazed at this! Which are you sweater or not?
I am a sweater! Most definitely. I completely sweat through my top during long runs.
9. I’m thinking of doing a marathon, tell me which one you would do if you were going to do one and why? Or tell me about your favorite one you have done.
I haven’t done a marathon yet (am training for one now). But, when I lived in VA I really wanted to do Marine Corps Marathon. I heard it is great, and a Marine gives you your medal at the end. Very cool.
10. Music or no music when you work out?
TV if I am on the treadmill, music if running outside.
11. I need a book for my trip to Mexico to read on the beach. What would you suggest?
Becoming an Ironman. It is great inspiration!

My questions to those of you who were tagged:

1. What is your favorite cheat food/meal?
2. Where is the best place in America that you have travelled to/lived in?
3. If you could change one thing you have done in the past what would it be and why?
4. What is your favorite thing you remember from your first race?
5. Would you prefer to run on a treadmill or in the pouring rain?
6. What is your guilty pleasure television show? Mine is Teen Mom. Please don't judge me.
7. If you could have one super power what would it be?
8. Do you remember your dreams when you wake up? If so, what is the strangest dream you can remember?
9. If you could only eat one food for the rest of your life what would you choose?
10. What piece of advice would you give a new runner?
11. Biggest Loser - love it or hate it?

I will try to tag people that have not been tagged already, but it's tough! I don't know if I can come up with 11...

1. Mel from Tall Mom on the Run
2. Janae from Hungry Runner Girl
3. Vanessa from Gourmet Runner
4. Amanda from 5 Miles Past Empty
5. Bethany/Ryan from Our Love On The Run
6. Heather from Run Faster Mommy
7. Tara from Colorado Runner
8. Emily from Sweat Once A Day

Right now everyone else I can think of has already been tagged! So I think 8 is good for now :) I will add more later if I can.

Friday, January 20, 2012

Fun with ASTYM

Today I had my first PT appointment. I wasn't sure how much it would help, but my PT is great and I learned a lot. He thinks my official diagnosis is insertion hamstring tendonitis. Sounds fun doesn't it? He did some ASTYM, which I have to say is not my favorite thing in the world.

From the ASTYM website, "She or he will run instruments firmly along your skin, following the direction of the muscle, tendon or ligament. You will feel bumps as the instrument moves along your skin. These bumps are the defective soft tissue. The first couple of treatments can be uncomfortable-but stick with it."

And the "instruments?"


Apparently I have 2 bumps of defective soft tissue (scar tissue) on my hamstring that should not be there. But, at least I can keep running while it heals.

12 weeks till my marathon!

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Coming Back/Looking Back

Despite my worst fears, you do not completely lose the ability to run if you take a week off. I was certain when I went 5 days without running that I would struggle to make it past a mile. I am not sure why...I think it is because it took me SO LONG to be able to run long distances that I am terrified to lose that now.

When I first started running, I thought that when you got tired you stopped running. So I put my poor running partner through many annoying runs when I would stop and walk every quarter mile or so. I didn't realize that you could continue to run past the point of tiredness. I don't know when I realized you could...even during my first half-marathon I kind of gave up mentally after 9 or 10 miles. I had no idea how much of running is mental.

One of my favorite things about running is the way it has changed how I think about myself. Even on the days I'm not happy with my body or I'm feeling "fat," I can still look in the mirror and think This body can run 13 miles straight. What are you complaining about? And I wouldn't give that up for anything. Thus, the fear of losing it.

Since my doctor visit I have run 5 miles, 4 miles, 4 miles, and 9 miles. I had a little pain the last 2ish miles of my 9 mile run, but overall it is definitely getting better. I don't know how runners with long-term injuries do it. I am so impressed with their mental and emotional strength to stay positive when they can't do something they love so much. It definitely motivates me to focus on injury prevention, and not take my running for granted!

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

30 for 30

My work is doing a challenge for the new year, where you have to exercise 30 minutes a day for 30 days (January 3-February 1). Since I exercise 6 days a week as it is, I thought it would be great to sign up. On my rest day I just do 30 minutes of walking on the treadmill so it is still basically a rest day. I am so glad I signed up for this, there have been a few days when I didn't want to exercise but knowing I had to report my workouts kept me accountable.

I am also trying to do a few other things for 30 days straight - eat 5+ fruits and vegetables a day, and drink 8+ glasses of water a day. Yes, sadly, this is a challenge for me. I am someone that has to remind myself to drink water, or I won't. And I don't eat super unhealthy (despite my blog title :), but I definitely don't eat enough fruits and veggies. So far (today is day 9) I have been doing great and meeting all of my goals every day. I weighed and took measurements on the first day so we will see if this has any effect!

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Good News, Bad News

I finally got up the nerve to go to a sports medicine doctor on Friday. I really liked him, he seemed very thorough and didn't think I was crazy for wanting to run a marathon and an ultra this year.

The good news is, I only have a mild hamstring strain and if the pain isn't getting worse I can continue to run.

The bad news is, the hamstring strain (and the IT band issue I have had for a year+) is due to my SI joint being tilted. So that kind of sucks. My right hip is slightly more forward than my left hip, and I have weak hip stabilizers. So, this pulls on my hamstring, and stretches my IT band. I also overpronate, which increases the pulling and stretching. So the doc recommended PT for 6 weeks to work on some of these issues.

I am glad that my current injury isn't worse, but not thrilled that my body is a little screwed up. It does explain a lot though.

The doctor said doing the marathon and ultra is "ambitious but do-able." So I have decided to push back the ultra to one in October. This gives me 3 more months so I don't need to rush into training. If my hamstring heals up as planned, I will still do the marathon in April I think. I have about 14 weeks to go so hopefully the rest of my training goes fine.

If anyone in the Portland area sees this and is looking for a good sports medicine doc, you should see Dr. Crist at the Portland Clinic. He is great!

Monday, January 2, 2012

First Run of 2012

Since yesterday was a rest day, I had to wait until today to do my first run of 2012. It's a cut-back week so I did a long run of 10 miles. Despite adding walk breaks to my last 4 long runs, I could run the whole thing straight. I actually ended up running 10.6 miles, because I was running at a 5.3 mph pace and I wanted to do 2 hours.

I have gotten a pain in my upper hamstring a few miles into my long run for the last few weeks. I am worried that I have a small pull or tear in it. I kind of want to go to the doctor to see, but I am afraid they will tell me I have to stop running to let it heal. I would hate to do that...but if I have to, now is better than later. I have 15 weeks until my marathon, so if I had to take a couple weeks off I could probably still make it. I am ahead in my training schedule anyway so I wouldn't be too far behind.

I looked up sports medicine doctors on my insurance website just in case. We'll see if I actually get up the nerve to make an appointment :)

Sunday, January 1, 2012

2011 in Review/2012 Goals

So yes it has been a long time since I posted, again! I have still been running though. I decided to run a half-marathon on the treadmill every weekend in December a) as a challenge to keep me running, and b) to ward off those extra holiday calories. It was really fun and the last half was the best! I have also been reflecting on my running this past year and thinking about things I want to accomplish next year...

2011 running by the numbers:

Miles: 780.45
Races: 1 5k, 1 10k, 7 half-marathons (+4 on the treadmill :)
PRs: 5k, 10k, half-marathon

2011 goals accomplished:

Breaking 30 minutes in a 5k
Breaking 2:30 and 2:20 in a half-marathon
PRing in a 10k
Joining Half Fanatics
Running a half-marathon with no walking
Running 2 half-marathons back to back

The last 2 years I have focused too much on race quantity over quality. This definitely isn't the best use of my training, or racing budget. So this year, I am only going to do races that a) are potential opportunities to accomplish my running goals or b) important for other reasons such as friends or family running also.

2012 goals:

Break 2:10 in a half-marathon (current PR 2:19:35)
Complete a marathon (current longest run 14 miles)
Complete an ultramarathon (complete...not race! the goal will be to cross the finish line, no time goal)

2012 races planned:

4/15 Vernonia Marathon
5/20 Rock n Roll Portland Half-Marathon
7/28 Mt. Hood 50 Miler
10/7 Portland Half-Marathon

Today is a rest day so I am spending it looking up races and training plans. It is hard to narrow down which races and goals to go many options!