March 13th was the third annual St. Patrick’s Day 5K run and walk put on by the Seashore Striders in Denton, MD. The race is an event centered around the community and supports the Caroline Human Services Council which provides programs for children and youth in Caroline County. I was signed up for the 5k along with friends and colleagues from Benchworks and was planning to use the race as a benchmark in my preparation for the upcoming 10K Cooper River Bridge Run in Charleston.
When I originally signed up for the Bridge Run I set the goal of completing it in the 48 minute bracket in order to achieve an 8-minute pace. However, due to the triathlon training I’ve been doing, I’m only getting in three runs a week and have not dedicated as much time to speedwork as I had been planning. All of my runs have been averaging anywhere from an 8:40-9-minute pace so I was curious to see what I might be able to achieve at the 5K. Continue reading →
It’s been a couple months since I last wrote and despite my neglect of my blog, I haven’t entirely neglected my winter work-out plan…although it hasn’t exactly gone according to schedule. In November I ran the Richmond Marathon with a PR and had high hopes of maintaining my running base while re-building my swim and bike base and blending in reasonable sets of weight work-outs. My running plan was to run three times a week, with an easy 3-5 mile run, a speed work-out, and a hill work-out. The reason for this is because my goal this year for the Cooper River Bridge Run is to complete the 10K with an 8-minute pace (and beat my husband).
When I look back at my RunningAhead log, I did pretty well with my goals immediately after the race. I took a well deserved break the week immediately following the marathon with just one pilates class that week. I then did a good job maintaining five days of work-outs weekly alternating runs with swims and added sessions of pilates–something I missed terribly during the height of marathon training. And then December came and from the looks of the log, holiday season hit in full swing. Continue reading →
I was recently at my first T3 event, the happy hours organized by the Annapolis Triathlon Club of which I am now a member, and I was talking to a new friend who asked me how long the buzz lasted from a marathon. He was convinced that triathlons leave a longer lasting buzz with athletes than running events. I imagine every athlete will have an opinion on this, but it’s more than a week after my second marathon and I’m still enjoying my runner’s high. So before it fizzles I’d like to recap the Richmond marathon, my second 26.2 mile experience. Continue reading →
I’m pretty sure I speak for the majority of runners when I say we are not elite runners. When I sign-up for a race it is not because I expect to win it. Never do I think I will leave a race with the cash prize nor do I expect to set any records. In a few smaller races I’ve placed well in my age group, but for the most part I am on the start line with the same goal as most of the other runners–to finish and/or to achieve a personal record. If we are not expecting to win the race, why then do we average runners get the pre-race jitters? Continue reading →
A few mornings ago I woke up with that subtle, yet horrible sensation of a sore throat coming on. I swigged down some Airborne, started popping Vitamin C, and broke out Sudafed nasal decongestant pills (one of the few medicines in my cabinet). The sore throat came and went but quickly moved on to a relatively runny nose which has in turn caused a nice phlegmy, but sometimes dry, cough. Despite the fact that I have this minor cold, I will knock on wood as I write, “I don’t get sick.” I’ve been knocking on wood saying this for years.
The last time I got sick–and it was this same kind of sick–it lasted for about five days and was right over top of this year’s New Year’s holiday. The last time I got sick was at the very beginning of training for my first marathon and this particular cold is coming at the end of training for my second marathon. Despite the sniffles and coughing, I still maintain that I refuse to get sick. Continue reading →
Smith Mountain Lake; it was gorgeous the day after the race!
The Big Lick Triathlon in Smith Mountain Lake, Virginia, was my first Olympic triathlon. I learned about the race from my sister-in-law and her husband who have done the race before and we had a full crew of six of us ready for race day. We also had a full crew of family ready to cheer for us and we all arrived to Virginia in time for the Friday night packet pick-up and a hearty dinner at a local restaurant. Before I get into the event play-by-play, I must share an embarrassing side note only for the purpose of sharing my mistake so that hopefully no one else will make it. Continue reading →
This weekend I am going to be doing my first Olympic triathlon in Smith Mountain Lake, Virginia. It’s the Big Lick. It’s also going to be a big milestone marking the end of many months of training and what I think is safe to call a significant obsession with triathlon training.
Every week I have been mapping out runs, rides, swims, time to get to the pool, looking at my gear, reading blogs, tweets, websites, checking and re-checking the weather, all in an effort to know as much as possible and be as prepared as possible going into this triathlon.
On top of the triathlon training I have been working my way through marathon training for the Richmond Marathon. I’m currently at the end of week nine in a 16 week schedule and am looking forward to re-focusing my training on just running.
Somewhere in between all this training I have been working, attempting to give some semblance of order to my house, and maintain an inkling of a social life.
My life is no different, or busier, than anyone I know and I wouldn’t trade the opportunities, the training, or the racing for anything. At some point it is all about balance and though I have yet to figure that out, this is my life and I’ll take it!
Have you run the Annapolis 10-mile race before? Runner’s World rated it one of the top six 10-milers to run in the country. This year was the 34th annual event which is put on by the Annapolis Striders who hosted something like 5,300 runners and managed an enormous number of amazing volunteers who were integral to running a smooth event.
The gracie's gear set-up in the Fleet Feet booth.
The A10 started for me in the Fleet Feet Annapolis booth representing gracie’s gear. I got a serious kick out of the entire experience. There were about a dozen great vendors at the Expo and I honestly didn’t even have a chance to see what anyone else was selling but I do know that gracie’s gear caught a lot of women’s (and some men’s!) eyes which gave me a chance to talk to lots of runners, which was my hope all along! By the end of the day I was once again motivated and inspired–I truly do love runners. Just a few of the cool things from the day (to me anyway): Continue reading →
We arrived early to get set-up and fortunately the dark sky didn't open up on us with any rain during the race.
In late April I set my mind on doing my first triathlon. My sister and her husband had moved to upstate New York last fall and her husband signed up for the Cazenovia Sprint Triathlon which was August 9th. I thought signing up as well would be a great way to tie in a visit to their new home and I was eager to mix up my running with cross-training for a tri. After months of swimming, biking, running, searching for the best thing to wear, practicing transitions, and mentally preparing to do a triathlon it was finally time to put all that work to the test.
The days leading up to the tri I tapered my training and kept my meals consistent with what I’d been used to eating. The day before the race I had three square meals with slightly more carbs in each than I would normally have, a race routine I’m used to. We all (myself, my husband, and my brother-in-law) went to bed at a reasonable hour with a 5:45 a.m. alarm set. As happens before any race, I woke up several times to make sure I didn’t miss the alarm and at 5:30 I was ready to get going. Continue reading →
There are a number of training drills that call for running at 5K pace or a 10K pace. Some drills just tell you to run at your goal race pace. Though I’ve gotten into incorporating more tempo runs and speedwork into my training I still haven’t quite figured out the paces I should be shooting for in those runs. The most I’ve taken the time to figure out is my goal time for different distances. If I took the time (and was good at math) I’m sure I could quickly figure out those different paces and times that I should be using in training.
I’ve run a consistent 9-minute mile for a long time; on longer runs I might average 9:30 and shorter runs I can usually stay under 9 minutes. These ranges are what I consider to be my “training paces.” I’d like to learn how to better use these paces during different training runs and I’d like to set more training pace goals. However, I also would like to better establish my race pace. On my recent half marathon I finally think I achieved what I could consider a race pace. Mile after mile I managed to maintain an 8:58 pace. Continue reading →