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Getting my run on.

Archives for May, 2009

Lost It

I’ve run three times in the last week (Saturday, Wednesday and today) with a bike ride on Monday.  I haven’t been slacking off that terribly lately.  And yet I feel like I’ve lost it.  Each run this week has been terrible.  I’ve been having side aches so bad they force me to walk.  Am I trying to run too fast (ha – fast!) to get to those sub 10 minute miles?  Am I not hydrated enough?  Am I not breathing correctly?

I’m going to keep trying to keep my pace to a sub 10:30 mile by periodically checking Scarlett and pushing myself to go faster when my pace is over that.  I want to get faster.

I’m trying to be diligent about my fluids – abstaining from caffeine and alcohol and trying to get more water into me.

And during today’s run after the side aches attacked I really focused on my breathing and form.  When I changed my breathing (taking deeper, shorter breaths instead of longer ones) my side ache pain didn’t increase (it didn’t exactly go away, but at least it was manageable and allowed me to keep running).  And I focused on my arms.  I don’t think I have the best running form and I don’t use my arms the way I’m supposed to.  By focusing on my arms, it distracted me from my side ache and it picked up my pace a bit too.

I won’t get a work out in tomorrow (too much going on with Kris gone most of the day) but Sunday I’m hoping to get both a bike ride and a run in.  A brick workout.  Two weeks from the next race!

Group Ride: Bust

Turns out it was either a 90 min spin class or an outdoor group ride – instructor’s choice yesterday.  The instructor chose indoor spin class.  That would have been nice to know ahead of time, don’t you think?!  Instead Dusty, Kris and I headed to the lakes and did an 18.36 mile ride in about 80 minutes.  Our pace was fairly slow (13.7mph) but I blame that on #1: me and #2: the wind.  We also did a bit of starting and stopping.  Here’s where we went:


My legs were pretty tired at the end.  Kris coached me along the way, making me do a couple intervals, telling me to push my cadence, switch to my middle ring, etc.  All helped so that’s good!  He’s also going to move up my seat for me so I can get more power out of my legs.

The best part?  I did 18+ miles yesterday and today I’m barely sore!  Score!  I guess my legs are in better shape than I give them credit for.  Up this week is some more running and cycling of course.  I’m also toying with the 100 push up challenge again and maybe some squats to help my leg strength.  I won’t promise much though since my first focus this week is my son who broke his arm yesterday.  Oddly enough, I’ve lost my appetite during this stressful last day or so.  Huh.

Group Ride!

Kris has talked me into it.  And Dusty talked Kris into it (OK, I admit that wasn’t very hard).  Tomorrow Kris and I are going on our first group cycling ride.  It’s a 90 minute road ride with lunch afterwards for only $5!  Here’s more information: joie de velo vie

Come out and ride with us!  It will be so fun! (and I’m only half kidding – I mean, it might be fun, right?  90 minutes on my bike?  My butt already hurts just thinking about it!.)

Kris has our bikes ready to go and the water bottles filled with water and gatorade.  We’re all set!

Oh, and I got out running yesterday for the first time since the Duathlon.  Did a three mile loop near our house in under 32.5 minutes.  I guess those 11 minute miles are history for me!  Time to push myself to get under 10 consistently!

Eating “clean”

Thanks for your comments yesterday on nutrition.  Nutrition is something I struggle with daily.  When I said yesterday I was going to “eat clean” that basically meant I wasn’t going to stuff my face.  (see the tortilla chips and cheese dip I inhaled Saturday, Sunday and Tuesday!)  It was my goal to eat a low calorie diet yesterday.  And I did.  So there’s that.  However, I totally understand the criticism of my diet and the lack of fruits and vegetables.  I will say the lasagna I had for lunch was a veggie lasagna so it did have spinach and zucchini in it (and was yummy).

I’m not too worried about the balance of carbs/protein/fat in my normal diet.  When I was tracking religiously with fitday I routinely came in around a 40/30/30 carb/fat/protein mix.  I think that’s a healthy mix.  Maybe I should up the protein a bit as Pam mentioned but I don’t have a trainer to tell me that! :)   Maybe I should start tracking again to make sure my carbs aren’t going up?

Now, about those fruits and veggies.  I always try to have fresh fruit in the house and am pretty good about feeding it to the kids.  Myself though?  Fail.  I did have watermelon with my lunch yesterday so I guess there’s something.  And veggies?  I try to have veggies in my lunch (like yesterday) and in my dinner (does the tomato sauce on the pizza we had for dinner last night count!?).  So I do try to have fruits and veggies in my diet but I don’t always succeed and I’m certainly not getting enough of either one.  I’ll will work to correct that.  Because you’re right.

About Time

It’s about time I get back into it, don’t ya think?  Since the duathlon, I have not worked out once.  Shameful really.  And does it remind you at all about oh, say last October when I finished my big 10 mile race with Pam and Amanda and then basically took the whole winter off from exercising??  Well, it’s ringing some bells for me and scaring me.

I do have a bit of an excuse – strep throat last week took me down for a few days.  And then Kris was gone coaching this weekend so I had the kids by myself and Krystle’s bridal shower on Sunday so Saturday was spent parenting and preparing and Sunday was spent celebrating.  I have no excuse though for Monday or Tuesday of this week.  Sheer laziness I guess.

So, today’s the day.  I’m getting back on the bike (today after work) and I’m going to eat clean today.  My weight has crept up a bit (153.2 this morning) from a low of 151.6.  Not too much damage done but not really where I want to be either.  I saw those pictures of me from the back on Sunday and well, back rolls are not attractive.

What does eating clean meant to me?  Well, here’s my plan for today:

Breakfast: oatmeal and string cheese

Lunch: Smart Ones lasagna and watermelon

Snack: granola bar

Dinner: whatever Kris prepares – portion controlled of course

And that’s it – no eating after dinner.  This I have found to be key.  No night time snacking helps me tremendously when it comes to weight loss.  Oh, and of course there will be plenty of water throughout the day as well.

Now, about training.  I’ve made up a training plan for myself (similar to before) and will start that today.  I’ve already missed yesterday’s planned workout which I’ll try to make up on Friday.  It basically looks like this – Run Tues, Bike Wed, Run Thurs, Rest Fri, Brick Sat (bike/run), Bike Sun, rest Mon, repeat.  And I’ll be trying to get faster since I know I can do this now (run 3 miles, bike 12-14 miles).

So, there you have it.  Out in the open and written down and stuff.

Rough Week

Well, it’s kind of been a rough week for me.  After filing my race report, things went down hill.  I woke up Monday not feeling so great but went to work anyway.  And then I got worse.  Tuesday I stayed home and rested and still got worse (sore throat, full body aches, swollen lymph nodes, fever).  You know where this is going, right?  Yep.  Strep throat confirmed yesterday.  Finally got some good drugs.  Body aches and fever gone.  Sore throat not as bad today but still annoying.  Lymph nodes are still enormous (golf ball sized!) and sore.

All this means I haven’t worked out since the duathlon, of course.  I took a 4 hour nap yesterday instead!  I’m hoping by tomorrow I can get out for a run.  I have to keep training you know.  Kris and I are officially registered for the Du at the Dam.  (I did manage to do something between my naps!)  And my goal for that race is to personal best my duathlon time.  Maybe sub 10 min miles and over 15mph on the bike?  Based on my Oakdale results, that shouldn’t be too out of the question, right?  So, who’s joining us.  Come on!  The more, the merrier!

Oakdale Duathlon Race Report

The race is done.  We did it.  I am a multi-sport athlete!  And guess what?  I rock!


Remember when I said it was my goal to finish the race in under two hoursI did it!  By the skin of my teeth!  I finished the race in 1:59:44.  I was 273rd out of 313 people (once again, a fast group!).  Here’s how it broke down:

Run 1: 3 miles – 31:46 – 10:36 pace (um, pretty good for me!)

T1: 1:24 (time for some gu in there)

Bike: 14 miles – 55:05 – 14.7mph (beat my goal of 14mph!)

T2: 0:58 – threw my bike on the rack, took a couple swigs of gatorade and I was out of there!

Run 2: 3 miles – 30:34 – 10:12 pace (not bad although the second run, according to Scarlett was only 2.88 miles!)

Do you see that people?  I was flying!  Well, relatively.  I was going pretty darn fast though (maybe I should push myself harder in my training runs, you think?).  And my transitions weren’t too bad either.  I’m very proud of my first duathlon performance.

I started the race in wave 3 – with all women 34 and under and the athenas.  All elite women started in wave 1 so although they were long gone, there was still some speedy people in our wave.  And when they took off, I took off with them.  At the 1 mile mark I checked my watch (no Scarlett for me, Kris had her for the day) and it was 10:15.  Whoa!  I was in an out of transition at the 33 minute mark.  I couldn’t believe how well it was going.  And I felt so good – going that fast and my legs and lungs were fine.  I liked the course though.  It was a paved bike trail through Elm Creek Park Reserve and while it was basically rolling hills after rolling hills, none were too steep or too long.  I love those kinds of courses!  And because it was through the park area it was twisting all over the place.  I liked that – there was always something new to look at including a lake and an equestrian area.

I ran into the transition area, grabbed my helmet and put that on, grabbed a gu and took three pulls on that and washed it down with some gatorade then pulled my bike down off the rack and ran with it out of transition.  On my bike and out of the park we went.  At first I was feeling pretty good, passing some people, riding in a higher gear for me.  Then we turned right out of the park and I saw it.  The hill.  It would be the hill we all talked about after the race.  It was big.  By the end I was in my lowest gear, staring straight down towards the ground and just pushing with all I had in order to get up it.  I passed one guy pushing his bike up it.  At least I wasn’t that guy.  I was passed by several people on that hill.  I was worried.  Would there be more?  Have I just used all my energy to get up that thing?  Crap.  From there on though the hills were few and far between (rolling you’d call them maybe).  I passed a dozen or more people (including those that passed me on that hill) and felt strong the whole rest of the ride.  A few parts of the ride were into the wind but even that didn’t phase me too much.  I was feeling great.  I can do this!

I sped into transition (only being scolded lightly to slow down, heh)  and ran with my bike to my spot on the rack.  Transition was a little crowded so I had to work through a couple groups of people.  I found Kris’ bike though, threw mine onto the rack, took off my helmet, had a couple swigs of gatorade and off I went again.  Like always my legs felt like jello as I strode out back towards the paved bike trail through the park.  Not having Scarlett, I had no idea how fast I was going and without my shuffle I had no music so I just focused on my breathing: in, in, out, out, in, in…everything felt fine (lungs, legs, no side stitch) so I just kept going.  At the 1 mile mark I looked down and saw I was still doing 10:15ish miles.  I couldn’t believe it!  Since everything was going so well I just kept rolling with it.  I had a woman in my sights who had passed me on the bike and, well, I wanted to beat her!  You’re all competitive like me, right?  During a race I set my sights on someone ahead of me and make it my goal to pass them.  When I do, I pick another person to “race”.  It took me two miles but catch that person I did!


With about 1/2 mile to go I look ahead and see Kris!  He’s come back down the trail to find me and has the camera in hand.  He snaps a few pics and then runs with me towards the finish, encouraging me, coaching me (can’t take the coach out of that guy!), guiding me the whole way.  Then he takes off ahead of me (damn him and his speed!) to snap some pics of me at the finish.  I cruise into the finish line and yay!  I’m done!  I did it!  I head towards the water (and food) and forget to turn off my watch.  When I do I see that it says 2:00:32.  I’m so amazed that I finished so much faster than I was anticipating!  (I was sure I’d be doing 11:30 miles and 13mph on the bike – I guess I should race more often – the competitiveness in me takes over sometimes!)

Want to know how Kris, the stud, did?

Total time: 1:34:29

Run 1: 23:35 – 7:52 pace

T1: 1:06

Bike: 43:44 – 18.5mph (with a little added time in there to get his bike shoes on and clipped in)

T2: 1:25 (slow poke! Hee!)

Run 2: 24:42 – 8:12 pace

I’m very proud of my man!


So, there’s another duathlon in Coon Rapids on June 13th.  I’m pretty sure Kris and I will be signing up for that one.  We don’t have anything else planned for that day.  Anyone else want to come race with us??

Tomorrow is Race Day!

Tomorrow is race day!  If you’re free, Kris, Dusty and I would love a cheering section!  Here is a link to the race: Oakdale Duathlon.  The race starts at 9am and I’m in wave 3 – starting at 9:04am.  Kris and Dusty will be in wave 1 starting at 9:00am.  And that’s the last I’ll see of either of them until this is over and they’re cheering for me at the finish line!  (They’ll both be way ahead of me, don’t expect to see either, even in transition.)

I’m feeling pretty good.  Not too nervous.  I know I’ll finish, although based on last year’s results, I’ll be finishing towards the back of the pack.  I hate being slow.  Watch for my interval training plan after the race is over.  Time to get faster!

Kris has become a biker, I believe.  He’s already found his next race and is trying to convince me to join him.  It’s the Tour de Tonka on August 1st.  I, um, don’t really want to bike 75 miles, thanks.  Or 62 or even 38.  16 I could probably handle.  He’ll need to do some more convincing before I’m signing up!  I’m a runner.  I will be running this summer, not biking!  Biking is cross-training, dude!

Oh, one last thing.  Some of the team names for tomorrow’s duathlon are cracking me up.  Like these: 3 Guys in Pain, Girls with Guns, Sofa King Cool, The Balding and The Beautiful and last but not least, When Do We Swim?  Ha!  Get it?  Triathlon humor for us “athletes.”  Hee!

No longer panicked

OK, so Friday I did as I said I would and I ran 4 miles.  They were fairly tough in that it was windy out.  But, I got them done.

Saturday I did a mini duathlon and first ran 3 miles then biked 12.5 and then ran another 2.2 miles.  See:


And you know what?  I felt pretty good doing it!  I took it easy during the first run because I knew I had a lot left to do.  And it was windy.  The bike wasn’t too bad.  I did a bunch of loops near my house so I wasn’t heading into the wind for very long at a time.  Then I went to do another run and I was a little worried.  My legs felt like jello.  I kept checking Scarlett and being surprised at how “fast ” I was running.  My first mile pace was 11:33.  Not too bad for someone an hour and a half into this thing.  Then I had to run into the wind for a while and I was getting tired so my second mile slowed down to 12:07.  Whatever.  I was out there.  I was doing it.  And I could have done another 1.5 miles on the bike and another mile run no problem.

After that long workout I sat down for a few minutes and that’s when I realized just how tired and sore my legs were.  I had plans for that night and needed to get in the shower and out the door so that’s what I did.  What I really would have liked to do though was have a massage and then lay around the rest of the day!

Two more workouts to go (tomorrow and Wednesday) and then it’s race day!


First off.  I am feeling skinny today.  I’m wearing my size 10 CAbi slim jeans and feeling fine.  I love these days.

Second of all, thank you Pam and Sara for your interval training advice!  I’ll be doing some internet research on this so I can prepare a plan for post duathlon training.  I’m also going to look into some 10 mile or half marathon races.  I’m feeling the desire to do another one or two of those this summer.

And lastly, I’m starting to panic.  I have not ran or biked the last two days like I said I would.  I’ve found other apparently more important although not really things to do instead.  And there are only 9 days until race day.  I’m feeling underprepared.  I am underprepared.  So, I’m going to make a plan and, get this, actually follow it and then I will hopefully have a satisfying first ever multisport race on the 9th of May.  *deep breath*

OK, here’s my plan (off the top of my head – feel free to criticize):

Friday 5/1: 4 mile run

Saturday 5/2: 3 mile run; 12.5 mile bike; 2 mile run (almost the full race – have a need to see how close I am)

Sunday 5/3: 4 mile run

Monday 5/4: Rest

Tuesday 5/5: 14 mile bike

Wednesday 5/6: 4 mile run

Thursday 5/7: Rest

Friday 5/8: Rest

Saturday 5/9: Race!

Now I just have to execute.  Any tips on nutrition for race day or the day or two beforehand?