Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Running while away

As I sit here awake in Green Bay, gotta love central time, when living in Eastern time! It started me thinking of running in new city's. I usually try to run in any new city when I travel. It sadly did not work for me on this trip, due to a 3 hour delay on my flight yesterday. Yes, I could go run right now, but I have plans to run with my group tonight and not looking to do a two a day!
But it made me think my favorite place to run while out of town so far has been in California! I was there in August for a wedding, and I even ran a 19 mile run along the water. That has to be one of the most beautiful runs I have ever done, and I could have gotten used to that!
I posted pictures of my sights from running on the west coast. As I'm posting this from my phone not sure how they are going to end up on the blog, & not able to label them.

When you going on a trip do you try to run when in a new city?

What is your favorite city to run in?

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Don't Stop Believing......

So as I did my run today after I voted....yes I ran from my house a whole .2miles to the voting center... and then I finished a 6 mile run.

Today was the longest run I have run with my headphones on since the Detroit Marathon and I didn't realize I had made such a good play list! When I ran in Detroit I had only 1 earbud (ok..Yurbud). And I was running with a partner and my brain was focused on the run and the music was just kind of there. But I do remember 1 song and the place I was at when it played....

I was actually in Canada when this song started and to my left across the Detroit river was Joe Louis Arena! I promise not planned at all, I use a shuffle! And as a Michigander and a hockey fan.....we all know this is played at every Red Wings Hockey game and every fan "is just a city boy, born and raised in South Detroit" 
But as the song played again today, it made me think I don't want to stop Believing in the goals I have for running! Last week I wrote out my goals that I want to achieve in my life as a runner. I made them realistic and hopefully achievable. I am looking forward to 2013 and hope to cross of my goals as completed! Now the question is to make the public or not!...haha!! 

Did you get out there and vote today?

Do you make goals a year in advanced or race by race?

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

the week after Detroit Marathon

It is now over a week post the Detroit Marathon. And I am able to walk with out a gimp any longer and I have even gotten a few runs in! On Saturday I went on my 1st run back, and yes it felt slow and the legs a little heavy but no pain or discomfort! So I was happy to be able to run seeing that I had the Wicked Halloween 10k race to run in on Sunday. Yes it was a race, but I was not racing it, it was for yet another easy recovery run. It was fun I traveled with one of my friends, Kristen, from East Lansing and meet up with Sharry who I met via twitter but finally in person at the Detroit Expo. & we got into the full occasion of the event! I also go to finally met Megan from Watch Me Go Run.
Megan as the Bee, me as Dorothy, Sharry as Pippi, & Kristen as Minnie

It was a really nice route and great set up for a race. Next year the running company who puts this on is doing a Triple Crown with their races! Run all 3 get an extra medal! It's all about the bling right!!

But since the real race has come and gone, I have time to reflect on the race. And think of what I did right and wrong.

I feel that my training was spot on! With a huge thanks to my coach Alex with Resolute Running. My carb loading was spot on as well, and this was the first time I did it the proper way. Eating a bowl of spaghetti the night before is just not enough I found out! My hydration was great ---the day before and the morning of the race. Where I went wrong was during the race! I kept reminding those I was running with to get water at the aid stations, but I who was holding my own water bottle did not drink enough. I think that is why my nausea/vomit issues came into play. At least I have learned and will improve on the next one! As for the next one (Marathon), it will be at Flying Pig Marathon. I have other races starting to get lined up...but that's another post to follow next week sometime! 

Monday, October 22, 2012

26.2 miles around Detroit!

Mine all Mine!!!
WOW!!! That is how I am starting this off! Detroit Marathon is in the books and I am still smiling about it. I would say I'm jumping up and down with joy but that is NOT happening today, walking is hard enough right now! So in my previous post I did not actually state my goals. This time I will. My goals were simple....
A- Finish and have fun!
B- Finish at 4:00
C- Finish at 4:15
D- Finish at 4:20

Official Results!! Acomplished Goal A and a mixture of B & C!
This was only my 2nd marathon, and I have learned a lot from this one. And I know I have so much more to learn as well! I am really proud of my accomplishment! I have so many people to thank for the support and encougement along the way to this point! My husband, for dealing with my crazy runner self! Stefanie for being there and giving my the courage to run my 1st marathon in March. The Helena Endurance Running Group, for being my 1st running group. Alex for being an awesome coach even from afar! The whole Resolute Running team!! The Village Runners for their support from 700 miles away. And my new running friends here in Michigan. Yes running is a solo sport, but you can not deny the fact that having support is also a huge part in running as well.

One of my friends and Resolute Running team mate came up from Alabama to run the Detroit Marathon! He was also looking to get a PR and he CRUSHED his goal time by 2mins! Why go 3:30 when you can go 3:28?! Vann Rocked it!!
Team RR prior to the Race!
As for the was awesome! I felt great went right to plan just as it was planned out. Yes I was a little fast at times but what can you do. The only down fall was some stomach issues. I had a few bouts of vomit and dry heaves (after the vomit). This started around mile 17-18. When I hit Belle Islle which were miles 19-22 is when I had to focus and recoup some. I made sure to walk and drink a full cup of water and gatorade at each of the water stops. I think that had I not done that I would have had a much harder time finishing! When I got to mile 22-23 I felt better and I then dug as deep as I possible could and finished hard and strong! I hit the last water stop at 24 and ran and drank and then I just took off for the finish. Looking at my garmin I knew with 3 miles left I still could break 4:15 mark! I truely believe that had it not been for the stomach issues I would had been right on for that 4hour mark, but "it is what it is" and I will now have a new goal to achieve! I am still really proud of this time though, I am not second guessing anything I did yesterday! I know I gave it my all!!
I ran this race with one of my new friends here in Michigan. It was Chelsea's  1st marathon and she ROCKED it! I wish I could have finished with her, but with my own issues she did get a few minutes ahead of me. 
Chelsea & I Prior to the start!

Next year I think I will run the half and enjoy it, and take some pictures of all the amazing sights of Canada and America all in one race! 

All DONE!! 

Now to enjoy a little rest.......
& get back on the roads later this weekend for a fun Halloween run! I got my Dorothy costume all ready to go! I think I should be able to run 6miles this weekend (i hope!!) 
And of course start making my goals for 2013!

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Taper time, a time to reflect

Just 4 short days away from the day I have waiting for many months now! When I signed up for the Detroit Marathon I still had not run my 1st marathon, and I had only ran a 20mile run once! But I was already signed up for the Georgia Marathon and I signed up for Detroit the 1st week that registration opened so I got in for a bargain! At the time I signed up I figured I would use the weekend to go up to Michigan visit family because I was still living in Alabama. Hows things have I am back living in Michigan!  
I am taking this taper time as a time to reflect a bit on this journey to the Detroit Marathon. 

As many of you know I started running while I was living in Alabama. I met a great group of people that have helped, and encouraged myself and others on obtaining their goals. You can read about my running family here----> Running Family 
So when I made the move to Michigan I was a bit scared and worried about finding a new family. And I can honestly say I have found a new running family. I am still getting to know everyone but we have had some great long runs and midweek beer runs and of course the new Monday night cupcakes runs! I am happy to have found a new runner partner. Part way through the summer I found out she was also running Detroit as her 1st marathon! And we have started to do some of our long weekend runs together, and now in 4 days we will be running together to achieve the same goal. 

Taper time---> some don't like it. Me I enjoy it and embrace it. I enjoy having less running miles and a few days off. Makes that next time to run even more exciting and fresh. And that is what I am hoping for on Sunday. Fresh legs and major excitement!

Goal--> I have one and I almost afraid to say it out loud as in possible jinking it! I have been working hard and next week I will tell you all my goal and how it ended up! I am somewhat treating this marathon is my 1st one. Seeing that I did not have the ideal 1st marathon experience ....stupid IT Band!

Training--> I had the time of my life training for this! I had a great coach, yes he may live 700 miles away. But it was one of the best experiences I have had training since I was a swimmer back in college and high school. I just hope after this he will still be willing to continue with some of my crazy questions and thoughts! I have learned a lot but I know there is a lot more to be learned! plus I have more goals to accomplish!! 

Next time I write I will be saying I am a Marathoner!!!! (again!) 

Friday, October 5, 2012

Half Marathon + 8miles...& taper begins

The final long, long run is in the books, and taper is about to begin! Detroit Marathon is only 16 short days away!! And can I say I am excited and ready!! 
On Sunday I went to one of my old 'home' towns to run in the Brooksie Way Half Marathon. I say 'home' because I went to Oakland University and lived and then worked in the area for many years and it was only 30mins from my actually home. The Rochester area is a very nice and pretty area! I actually had 21 miles scheduled for today and yes I did get all 21 miles in! But before getting into the run I guess I need to start with the expo. The expo was on the campus, and oh how the campus has changed since I was there!! So many new buildings including the rec center! Such a nice change from what it was when I was there, and I was a swimmer when I went to Oakland so I huge change! I have to say I did not expect to see the expo I saw! It was a lot bigger then I had expected and had a huge variety of vendors! I wish I had gotten then earlier then 6:30pm on Saturday! But then again my credit card is happy I didn't get there to early... But I did make one stop at a vendor that had a charms and I finally got a 26.2 charm for my Pandora Bracelet!
& he did let me know that he will be a Detroit with a special Detroit Charm!! So will have to hunt his booth down when at Detroit Expo, and no I do not remember the name of the vendor! I also saw a sign saying that Desi was going to be there..but I was in a time crunch never got to read the details...I guess I should have! So I got my bib and my very bright green shirt! and off to my Mom's to stay for the night. She lives 20mins from Oakland a whole lot closer then East Lansing so didn't have to get up super super early. 

The day of the race I had 21 scheduled! So I had to get in 8 miles prior to the actual race. I was not racing this race it was just a run and run down memory lane! So I got to Oakland and with the help from Matt at Faster than a Turtle found a great parking spot away. Plus I had been talking with him and he helped me make a pre-race/run route! He lives in the area and it has been many years since I have been out there so a little help was needed! But once I got out there running, it all came back to me of where I was at! So I started out at about 6:10am and made it back to my car little after 7am where I meet up with Matt and his wife Janet. From where we were parked we jogged to the start line which brought my pre race run at 7.75 miles. Yes I was .25 miles off but don't worry I will get to 21! Once we got the start line we dropped off our bags, and I put my long sleeve into bag check, at first I was worried but 4 miles into the run I was happy I got rid of my long sleeve. But I did keep my gloves on the entire time! 

I also used this race as a 'dry run' of what I would do or not do for the actually race in Detroit. I ran with out my water bottle. Something I have been doing on all of my training runs since moving to Michigan. I don't have any pre-arraigned water stops up here like I did back in Bama. So I did this race to see what it would be like to run with out and take advantage of the water stops. What I learned, is that I will run with my handheld until its empty. I will work on running and drinking out of cups for the next race but for this one I am going with my handheld. At the end of the run I was thirsty and felt like I never could get a real gulp down. So I am happy about having this trial run! I have ordered a replacement handheld so if or when I dump my handheld I will have 1 in reserve. 

As for the race itself, I put myself in the 10min/mile pace group. I was scheduled to be at a 10:15 pace, but ended up closer to 10min pace. But felt great the entire time, ok not the entire time....the hills! It is called Rochester Hills for a reason! They were not horrible, they were very close to the ones I ran on a daily basis in Bama, but when I have been running in the flat land of East Lansing they were a bit of shock to the legs. But I did not walk any of them, and I only got off pace by 15sec or so on each of them. So I was proud of myself. 
The race itself was a great scenic tour of the town and a huge trip down memory lane for me! I enjoyed every minute of it! And yes, will most likely go back next year. As for that .25 I had to get in! Well....I crossed the finish line, graped my medal and heat sheet and just kept running! Let me tell you it's a bit hard to keep running when you have to weave through people who are done! and then I made to the parking lot and just did a few circles and I'm sure the people where looking at me like I was a crazy person! But oh well...marathon training got to get it in!!

Having fun at the end of  a 21mile run!
My reward for a 21mile run with a 13.1 during it!

Keep running happy!!! 

Questions of the post......

Do you train with a hand held or fuel belt? If so what do you do on race day?

Have you ever ran a race plus more miles??

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Fall is arriving and a Half Marathon

So the weather has begun to change here in Michigan. Fall is slowly but surely making it’s appearance. This is my first real fall in over 8 years! The crisp cool weather in the morning and evening, with a slight bit of warmth in the afternoon.  But with this cooler weather I am slowly learning that my blood has also became very thin from my time living down in Alabama. Most of the runners here in Michigan are starting to love the cooler weather, and probably still in their shorts and t-shirts for their runs, me I am starting to break out my cold weather gear. I actually enjoy running in the 60’s, I am one of the odd people! I would much prefer to run comfortably in shorts and tanks then gloves, and 3 layers of tops! I will say I am happy that the cooler weather is starting now, so that I can start to get adjusted to it well before the Detroit Marathon in October. But don’t worry I am very aware I live in Michigan there is always a small chance of warm October day that can occur!  The one sad thing of fall and winter weather is that all the cute Lulu summer running wear must go into the bottom of the drawer. 

Kristen, Chelsea & I prior to race. Can you tell who the cold one is!?
Over the weekend, it was a fun and great running weekend. It was the Capital City River Run half marathon . It is 6 weeks out from Detroit Marathon so I get to race to see how I am feeling going into the marathon. The scheduled actually called for 22 miles on this day, but got the approval from the coach to get at least 20 in for the day! So I started with a 1.75 mile warm up prior to the half marathon. I had hoped that warm up would had actually made me warm, but not so much! I was still a fridged soul at the begining of the race.  The plan for the race was to plan for a 2 hour half marathon. It was also my 1st race running with my new running buddy's!!  Chelsea and Kristen were hoping to break the 2 hour mark for the 1st time! So we got into the 9min pace group. And we set off at 8:30am. It was great weather for racing, after the 2nd mile I was warm enough and very happy that I went with tank and shorts. Over the first few miles I was happy to be in the pace group, it did not allow me to go all out as I sometimes do at the start of any run, the rush of starting! So we kept great strides and conversations through out. At mile 4 Kristen had to make a porta-potty break, but told us to keep on. So Chelsea and I kept on. We both kept with in the pace group, conversation pace, and both had said to each other "this feels great". So at mile 7 we decided that if we still feel like this towards the end we would pick it up a bit. At first I thought ok, pick it up at mile 11 or 12. But by mile 10 as I looked at my Garmin we already started to pick it up to an 8:45 pace, so we just kept with it. And the last 2 miles went in between 8:30-8:45 pace. She had an awesome sprint to the finish!! 
Into the finish
We finished at 1:56 and some change. She had busted the 2hour mark, and had almost 8 min PR (or more!) as for Kristen....She didn't catch up with us, but once we crossed the finish line, we had a chug of chocolate milk and water, we went back up the course to run the finish in with Kristen! She may not had broken the 2hour mark, but she did have a 10min PR and came in at 2:06! I was very happy and proud of them!! 

As for me, I was very happy and pleased with how I ran. This was my 2nd fastest half marathon since I started running! And it felt easy! And that's how I had hoped that running at 9min pace would. I feel 6 weeks out from Detroit I am right where I need to be! I feel that all the training and guideness that I have been doing and given from Coach Alex is paying off! I am really excited to get to the Detroit and get into the 4hour marathon pace group! 
After the race, there were still miles to get in! Chelsea who is also training for Detroit had more miles to run as well. So we started off to get our extra 6 miles in! And let me tell you those were some slow slow miles! But we got them done!

With 5 weeks until the Detroit Marathon I am feeling great and ready for it! In 2 weeks I am going to go run in the Brooksie Half Marathon +8 miles! Marathon training doesn't stop just for a half marathon. But with that one, I will be at training pace no race style pace that day! Plus it will be a hilly route which will be good seeing that I have been in the flat lands here in East Lansing. And I get to meet some new running, twitter Friends,! But, I did get to finally meet Jen @redheadrunning even if it was for a short meeting...those silly marathon additional miles got in the way of talking longer! But I think for my next race I need to run with her a few times....she's got speed!!

How was your running weekend?

What is your favorite season to run in?

........until next time always Run Happy :)

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

10 Miler & 10 Thoughts Tuesday

I know it has been such a while since I have last blogged. But life just got in the way! & I have to admit when I had down time I was just lazy about writing! But I can Promise I have been running!! Actually just finished my 10th week of my training for the Detroit Marathon! And still feeling great and feeling strong. Today I had a 10mile run scheduled and while I ran it I thought I would do a list of 10 things going on in life!

10. We are finally fully moved in and unpacked in our new house! Such a nice feeling to feel back to a normal life since we have made our move from Alabama back to Michigan.

9. It's the start of Football season!! One of my favorite times of year! & it all starts off this weekend with Michigan vs. Alabama. GO BLUE!! and seeing that I have just moved from Alabama there has been a little back and forth 'smack' talk going on! Even have a small little wager with Michael, from Alabama. That when MICHIGAN WINS he will have to wear a Michigan Shirt for at least 1 mile with his Running Group, the Village Runners. And if (by chance) Alabama wins then I have to wear a Bama shirt while running in East Lansing. 

8. The weather!! Oh my I am loving it! Just perfect!! I have already had one run in Capri's and long sleeves! I am so ready for fall. but check back with me when Michigan winter comes around!

7. Signed up for another marathon!! Flying Pig Marathon!! It has been a race I have looked at for awhile, so one day I just signed up for it! Plus it will keep me running during the Michigan winter.

6. Trip to LA!! Our good friends got married a couple weeks ago. I also had 19 miles scheduled for the Saturday of the wedding. But with my luck we were less then a mile from the beach! So 19 miles on Venice beach, Santa Monica, Marina Del Ray made for the best sight seeing trip ever!
19miles along the Pacific Ocean!

5. Few weeks back, signed up and ran a 5k Race here in Lansing! It was a great race. I ended up with a 
huge PR! A 2min PR from Last year!!  Also was 1st in my age group! yes it was a small race, but still 1st is 1st!  In addition to running the race, I had the rest of my training run to finish, 9miles after the run. Not the greatest way to do a recovery run, but had to get the miles in!

4. Have made some new running friends with the Mid Michigan Running Group. Great group and like most runners have one thing in common in addition to running, beer! Wednesday night runs ending with beer always a good idea!

3. Still on the hunt for an actually job, but not having a job has been nice for me and getting my runs in! No early early wake up calls! :)

2. Training plan. I have been asked by a few I have run with what plan do I use. Well I am using the plan from Resolute Running. Coach Alex devised the plan to tailor the needs for my goal and pace. I met Alex in Alabama and we discussed being my running coach for the Detroit Marathon well before I knew I was moving. I am very thankful that he still took me on as a 'student' even though moving to Michigan. I have learned so much from this training cycle and still have so much to learn. I am very excited to see the end result! which is only 2 months away!

1. I will try to blog more often, I do have the time to do so again! 
But until the next post Run Happy!!

~~Summer is coming to end....are you ready for Fall to Start?

~~What type of training plan do you use? 

~~It's FOOTBALL season....Are YOU READY!?

~~Are you training for a full or half Marathon for the fall? How is your training going?

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Where did July go??

It is August 1st and I'm still not sure where July went?! Well...ok I do! It was one of the busiest months I have had in a very long time! We closed on our new house in Michigan on June 29th and the rest has been a blur! 
It's OURS!! 
For the 1st week of being in the new house, it was an empty house as all our stuff was still in Alabama. But Mom was nice enough to let us borrow an air mattress and a tv, because we were able to get DirecTv hooked up! But there was plenty to do, remove wallpaper in 2 rooms and then paint them plus 2 other rooms! Had to make the house ours. I was able to finish all but 1 room before we made our trip to Alabama to meet the movers. We had Rose Moving company (Allied) as our movers and they were AWESOME! I was actually taken back by how quick and efficient they were! We were originally quoted that it would take 2 days to pack our house and 1 day to load!
Packing up Alabama

Final run in Alabama, finished at the Bamma
 So I had my whole week planned out to meet up with my running friends while in Alabama! Well with them only taking a day and half to pack and load and a thunder/lighting storm...meeting up with some of my friends didn't happen :(  I did get one run in with some from the Helena Running group. It was great to see the few that came out even if it was a bit wet with the rain! That just means I have to make a trip back down! & I am looking to do so for the Mercedes Marathon in February. I did have one final run around the neighborhood, and it took me almost 5 minuets to start, I had so many emotions as I walked out the front door that the tears started to flow! But made it through it and it was my speed work 6miler for the week. 

So Mike and I arrived Tuesday in Alabama and on Friday morning with an empty house and our boat loaded and ready and in the truck we started our trip back north! And yes the tears started again! We had lived there for 8 years and we have grown so much and of course met such great people and so many memories, but it was time to go home. 

Ready to unload in Michigan.
Once we got back it was a nights sleep and on Monday at 8am that orange truck showed up again and the boxes started filling up our house. Over 400 items which included our furniture and boxes were packed into our house! Who knew we had so much stuff??! And it seemed like it just kept coming and coming, and at 12:30 it was all off the truck and my house became a maze of boxes! So for the past 2 weeks that has been my life, unpacking and organizing. But our house is starting to feel like our home again! 

Lululemon Birthday! :)

During the month I did celebrate my 36th birthday, yes that's my age and not afraid to say it! And it was the 1st time in 12 years I had not spent my birthday at Ocean Isle Beach, NC which was a little sad, but with all that was going on and being home I was ok with it. Plus my Mom made it a very happy birthday! Also during the month Mike and I celebrated our 10th wedding anniversary!! 
Mike did good with my gift!
10 years ago! my love

Yes I have been running! Running has been keeping me sane through this whole process! And I had one of my highest mileage months ever! 172 miles!! All for training for the Detroit Marathon in October! But last weekend I did a crazy running Sunday! I had 13 scheduled for the day, but I had also signed up for a 5K race. It was a small race, the Hall of Fame run in Lansing, MI, but I wanted to run it to see how I was doing! So I started with a 1 mile warm up, and then ran the race in a HUGE PR time for me! A 2 min. PR from last year!! And ended up 1st in my age group and 18th overall. Yes it was a small race, but the PR was what was most Important!!
PR in 5K
Then seeing that I still had 9miles to get in to get to 13, I started back up and ran 9 miles on the River Trail! Yes it was a crazy day of running but a good day! 

Now that life is starting to settle down again, I hope to get back to blogging my journey to the Detroit Marathon, which is now only 2 months and 19 days away!! I am really excited about running it and the training has been going well even with all the crazy life events happening now!

This sums it up! 

How was your July? Was it a blur or month of memories?!

How did you fair with running in the July heat?

Monday, July 9, 2012

Running and a new home!

Week 3 of training for the Detroit marathon is in the books! And it was a hot week!! Was able to stay well hydrated even on my long 16mile solo run on Saturday! Even though I started at 6:30 it was already 77degrees outside! But luckily where I now live there were plenty of shaded areas on the way.
For me this past week of training was most tiring then before, due to the move into the new house! Yay new house, but not yay with all the cosmetic things I am trying to get done before we actually get our stuff! I have painted 3 rooms and still have 1 to go!
I will look forward to finally having Internet in a week as well, and hopefully have more time to blog again!
Until then happy running!! And stay cool out there!

Who's training for a full or half marathon? And how has the weather been affecting your runs?

Monday, July 2, 2012

Moving, running, & (trying) to blog

My current life is crazy busy!! We finally bought a home in East Lansing, and now the move begins! The first move starts with moving out of our hotel we have been in, and next week make a trip back to Alabama to get all of our stuff! So it is going to be a busy few weeks! But it was nice to see a sold sign in our new yard!!

I am still in training mode for Detroit Marathon and as soon as I get a chance to get blog all my fun I will do so! I have photo documenting every run! Just need the time to get it up! But for now priority number 1 is to paint the rooms before our stuff comes and of course get my runs in!!

Look forward to sharing my journey of training for this marathon, and hope you will enjoy as well!

But for the time I will be painting! Now that the horrible wallpaper is off the wall!!

Monday, June 25, 2012

Training at Races

This weekend was filled with races and training all wrapped into one! When we set a date for me to move from Alabama to Michigan, one of the first things I did was look for races. It wasn't necessarily to go and run them, but more to maybe meet people and to not have to do my runs alone! So this past weekend I had the Solstice Run, which was a 10mile route but I added 2 at the beginning. And then on Sunday was the Heart of Detroit Run which I did the 10k route. 

You may ask, "Why would I run a race as a training run?" Well that's an easy answer for me to answer...I have just started week 1 of my training for Detroit Marathon on October 21st! I ran my 1st marathon in March, read all about it here, and I am ready for the next one, and hopefully a better one! The one thing that I am doing differently for this marathon compared to the 1st one, is I have a running coach! We may not be in the same state, but there are a lot of online programs, so I figure this will work. I know my coach, I met him Alabama and actually talked about being my coach prior to knowing I was moving. But I will go more into that a different time. But I will say, so far it is nice to have a plan written out and with the pace I need to be at. I am one of those that needs things written out to completely understand. So I am really excited for this journey and really excited to see the end result on October 21st!

As for the races this weekend...they were both at different locations and had different terrains! But I learned a lot from both of them!
Solstice 10miler +2

Solstice Race:
It was in Northville, and the weather was perfect for a run! I had 12 on my schedule so I had to add 2 miles in addition to the 10 miles on the race course. I ended up parking at the High School and instead of taking the shuttle to the start line, I ran the 2 miles to the start line. I was supposed to be at 10:44 pace for today's long run, well it kind of happened. The 1st 2 miles were a bit to fast....even though I knew I had enough time to get to the start line, I was still worried about taking a wrong turn (even though it was impossible) and not making it in time. But I think going to fast the 1st 2miles ruined the average pace on the Garmin, which made getting to my training pace difficult when the 10mile race started. ~Live and learned from that one!~
I was looking forward to this hilly route, still can't believe I am looking forward to hills! This is from the website for the race------->10 Mile, 10K, 5K USATF Certified Courses: Run famous "KONA HILL" -challenging hill at 3/4 mile mark on 10 Mile Kona Run and 10K Aloha Run courses. But I guess I am still somewhat used to the hills in Alabama because at the end of the race, I was still looking for the hill... (sorry to those who are reading this & are saying those hills were tough) My tune might change in a year, after running on flat surfaces!

At the Tiger prior to Race

Heart of Detroit Race:
This was just an awesome location! Comerica Park!! Where the Detroit Tigers play. And at the end of the cross the finish on the field!! How awesome is that?? This one I was better about keeping my 10:04pace, I was a little faster then planned, but at times I stopped focusing on my running and just took in the sights of Detroit! Oh how it has changed, this area was so clean and built up! I know there are areas that are not like this, but this was all new to me! I am also hoping this was a small preview of the Detroit Marathon...if it is, it looks like it might be a flat race, which is good and bad.
an hour later...on the Field!

Here is what I learned from this weekend:
1) Going to race with out my running family is a little different. A race is more fun with a running family.

2) Both races I ran with no breaks! No 'water' stop breaks, for either the 10mile or 6mile. Which was great for a training run. As I am trying to limit my 'water stop breaks' or at least cut down on the stop time when I do stop.

3)*I am far from being a fast runner* but it was interesting watching those who were racing this weekend while I was just running. The biggest observation I took was the breathing! Because I was going at a slower pace then normal for a race, I took in how everyone was working really hard and they were all breathing hard! Do I sound like that too, I wonder? & it was great to see how many people were out there! I also learned that going at a steady pace does help, because at the start of the races I had many people past me, but by the end with my steady pace I did end up passing these same people. 

4) It was hard for me, a little bit, to not speed up! I really wanted to, but I know that all of these slower runs will pay off! I have a huge goal for October and following the plan will help me get to those huge goal!

5) During the races, I made sure to take the time to say Thank You to all those who were helping with the race. There were a lot of police and volunteers out there! So next time your at a race make sure to say thank you as much as possible, they really do appreciate it!!

Sorry for this long post....but it was a fun weekend and great end of week 1 of Detroit Marathon Training!!

~~~Did you race this weekend? How did it go?

~~~Have you ever gone to a race and used it as a training run? What did you take out of it?

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

1st race back in Michigan, Ann Arbor Half Marathon

When I found out I was moving back to Michigan, one of the first things I did was look for a race! I figured why not, might be able to meet some new people and it would keep me motivated to keep running! So the first race that I signed up for was the Ann Arbor half marathon. It was in the inaugural year for this full and half marathon event. Which didn't bother me, it was a race being ran through Ann Arbor one of my favorite cities. 
Over the past few weeks I had kept my running up, and I had been feeling great! When I ran as part of the Dixie 200 relay race I had some of my best runs! I felt ready, I was aiming to make a PR, I wanted a 1:50, and I had felt ready for it! But then race day occured.....

Let's first start with the night before...
         Usually the night before I try to have a nice peacefully relaxing evening. And it had started out that way, my husband I spent the afternoon looking at houses after I got back from helping out at the expo for the race. We were about to decided on dinner, I was looking forward to having a small meal and then going to bed. 
Brady after surgery
Bo & Brady on a normal walk
That all changed when I took my 2 Boston's outside after their dinner. For some reason our walk did not go as planned....a fight between brothers occured and a trip to the Emergency Vet and then onto the  Michigan State Vet School. Some how during the fight, eye trauma occured and Brady is now a one eyed wonder dog. So needless to say my night was filled with a lot more stress then I typically would like the night before a race. It wasn't till after 10pm did I hear that he was out of surgery. But he is all better now, and Bo and Brady are slowly getting back to normal. I think once the e-collar goes away that will make life easier!
Brady telling Bo he forgive's him. 

So onto the actually race....after 6 hours of sleep I got up with only needing one of my three alarms I had set just in case! Onto Ann Arbor I went at 5:15am. I was able to easily find a parking spot, just across from the Big House!! If only it was Football Saturday...aww but that will be here soon enough.

When I got there, I had driven though some rain showers on the way, but on radar it looked like it was going to miss Ann Arbor! But the humidity did not miss Ann Arbor! It was a lot more humid then predicited! But I still felt ok. As I lined up, I had the usually pre-race nerves, the same ones I would get when I used to swim in college and highschool. I felt ready! And off I went at 7:05am. I felt great....i kept looking at my garmin and the avg.pace was just where I wanted it to be (8:20min/mile). And then the Hills that I kept hearing about came and kept coming. I was not worried about the hills at all, I had been running in Birmingham, AL, where I couldn't get away from hills. But since I have been in Okemos, for the past 3 weeks it is flat as can be. And after 7miles or so of hills, and still more in sight, they took their toll! I was just over it! And then I got tired. The hills started to piss me off, and the humidity didn't help and stressful night from the night before and lack of sleep all caught up to me at mile 9 or so. I now truley believe that running is just mental as physical, because I checked out! I hate that I did it, i was on track to do great and I had felt great. But I mentally checked out.  
Even though it was not the race I had wanted I still finished, it was my 4th marathon, and my second one under 2 hours (1:59:29). So I have to stop beating myself up about it. I have to remember the day when I said I would never run a marathon and here I just finished number 4 in just over a year! 
Finish of Half Marathon #4

Did you race this weekend? how did it go?

Have You ever checked out of a race?

Friday, June 15, 2012

to Run with Music or Not?!

To run with music or not, that is such a big question some days! And most everyone has their own opinion on it
I personally enjoy running with music! I feel that with what ever type of music I have on will help the tempo of the run. If I am out for an easy run, I make sure to have a playlist with slower paced songs, if I am out for speed work or tempo run I make sure to have a fast beat, faster music on the playlist. 
There are even websites out there that can recommend songs for what pace you are trying to set: http:Songs for 8:15min/mile pace 
There are many Studies showing the benefits of music and activity, whether it be running or cycling. 
In the current study, published in the Journal of Sport and Exercise Psychology, 30 subjects synchronised their pace to the tempo of the music which was 125 bpm. Before the experiment, a pool of music was rated using a questionnaire tool (the Brunel Music Rating Inventory) which then selected the most motivational pieces for the treadmill test. The subjects were given a choice of either pop or rock music.
When compared to a no-music control, the motivational synchronised music led to a 15 percent improvement in endurance.
"The synchronous application of music resulted in much higher endurance while the motivational qualities of the music impacted significantly on the interpretation of fatigue symptoms right up to the point of voluntary exhaustion," Karageorghis reported.

When I am out running with a group or a running partner, I do not feel the need for music, because the conversation is usually better then music! But now that I am back running most of my runs alone, I will enjoy my iPod and Yurbuds!

In 2 days I am running at The Ann Arbor half marathon and my goal for this race is to get a PR!! And this will be my 2nd race that I will be running where I will not be with a running partner, so headphones will be on!! And seeing that the race will be starting at the Big House I think it would only be fitting that the first song on the playlist is The Victors! Go Blue!!

Do you run with or with out headphones?

What is your "powersong" that makes you dig deep?

Monday, June 11, 2012

Running Family

I started running in March of 2010, and when I started I ran alone! All the time! At the time I was unaware of the running community that was out there. So needless to say I was very attached to my iPod and only knew the routes in and around my house. When I started to run, it was only short miles. Until I said I’m going to run a half marathon, which was going to be in April 2011. I had no idea what training plans were…my thinking was every weekend I will just run 1 more mile then last week, and when I get to 13 I will be ready to run my 1st half. So the week before the Talladega Half Marathon I ran 12.5 miles! Yes I know now…such the wrong way to train! I did run a few times during the week as well, but looking back I really had no idea what I was doing other then putting 1 foot in front of the other and putting miles in. 
Finished my 1st Half Marathon!
After running that race, I still couldn’t believe I had done it! And afterwards, running became a bit challenging. Maybe because I had just accomplished my goal of running a half marathon, and at that time I said I would Never run a marathon! I was in running limbo! I enjoyed running, but I had no other goals in the near future, and running alone was becoming lonely! But I still stuck with it, just a few runs during the week. But in June I saw a tweet looking to possible start a running group in Helena I responded. And my running love was renewed. It would be different; I would be running with people, which would be somewhat of a change. And so the first weekend in July, I got up earlier then I ever thought I would on a Saturday morning and meet up with the Helena Endurance Running Group.
Coffee after 1st HERG group run
It was the 1st time I had ever run with a group and looking back I am so happy I got my butt out of bed that Saturday morning! I continued to get my but out of bed every Saturday morning to go and run with the group. They became my Running Family! With them as my family, I was opened to a whole world of running I was unaware of!
I think I can honestly say, with out my running family I would have never said I want to run a marathon, or let’s just randomly sign up for a half marathon!
Donnette & I Prior to Montgomery Half

I am thankful and grateful for so many people, so I am going to do a short thank you list:
Donnette, for starting the HERG’s
Stefanie & I after
finishing my 1st Marathon

Stefanie for giving me the courage to run a marathon

Brooke, Mark, and Jason helping with “speed and hills”

Tom for helping warm up the hands…Tebow style
Liz & I after Wed Night run &
before Pizza time!

Liz for being my 5:30am running buddy and of course Wednesday night pizza eating!

In the few months before I left for Michigan (and before I knew I was moving). I found that my running family extended from Helena out to the Birmingham/Mountain Brook/Homewood area, with the Village Runners.  I had met a bunch of them through races and other social events. They are a group of runners that meet almost every morning for a run, and of course on the weekends.  I had kept saying I am going to come out there one morning during the week, but I never did until one of my last weeks living in Alabama. I was always so concerned with getting up at 4:30am and travel and making sure to get back in time to get to work. But then when it was one of my final weeks in Alabama, I finally made the drive out to Mountain Brook for the Sunrise run! It was great, such a large group of people at 5:15 in the morning to run! Seeing that I went from running alone to running with a group, seeing such a large group that early in the morning was amazing! Especially when most of my weekday AM runs were alone, it was a welcoming change! The only thing was that I wished I had started to get up and drive out there a long time ago! It wasn’t so bad getting up early and driving out there. And with this extension to the family I am thankful for meeting them and keeping the motivation going! I will miss getting to know, Randy, Jill, Michael, Russ, Sara, Julie, Darnell, Niki, Tanya, David, Alex, & Cathy and everyone else...but there is always Facebook and Twitter to keep & stay in touch! And of course destination races!!

Village Runners Post Sunrise Run
As I now have moved back to Michigan, I am trying to find my new running family. I am not sure it will ever be able to fill the 'running' shoes as the family I had in Alabama!
HERG group

~Do you have a running family?
~What do you love most about this family?