Tag Archives: Half Marathon

Grumpy Sunday Runday

The sun was shining, not a cloud in the sky, and I wasn’t in the mood to go for my long run on Sunday.  I didn’t get a good night’s sleep, so that could be the number one reason right there. My alarm went off at 6, but apparently on its first snooze, I turned the alarm completely off.  No worries.  Meep managed to howl and scream and annoy the hell out of me until I woke up.  He knows.  He’s a good cat.

Regardless, I still didn’t get out early enough.  It was already hot.  And heat makes me cranky.  I don’t know how the weather can change from 45 deg F to 80 in a matter of 24 hours.

And OMG, all the people on the trail.  And bikes.  And dogs.  And pollen.  And bugs.  Following are a few of my grumpy observations on the first part of my run:

  • Two big dogs walking with their owners without a leash.  Just so happens a bike rice was passing through… one wrong move from these leashless dogs and they would’ve been flattened out like yesterday’s newspaper at the bottom of a birdcage.
  • A toddler running back and forth across the trail.  Again… people… bike race… flattened toddler. Did the millions of fast bikes passing you not give you a freaking clue?
  • To the cyclist who passed me thisclose with zero room to spare… Dude.  I don’t need to feel the wind from your draft.  If I trip over my feet and stumble while you’re passing too close, you’re going down, as is the rest of your entourage.  I bike this trail, so I know there’s plenty of room to share, especially when I’m already running in the grass.  A$$hole.

Then at mile two I had a special escort.  A white butterfly.  This lovely little butterfly flitted along with me for at least 1/2-mile.  My spirits started to lift a bit.  Once that happened, the butterfly flew directly in front of me, then disappeared, never to be seen again.  It was the only butterfly I saw on the trail all day.

And then I looked up.  There were the eagles… Papa on his tree watching over things, Mama in the nest taking care of Junior.  My heart was full and my angst gone.

However, an hour later on turn-around, I started to get cranky again.  I was running into the sun.  And I was hot.  And proof-positive that I sweat lavender as the bees started to become interested in me.  WTH.

Total sun trap.

I eventually made it home in one piece without any incidents, even without seeing any incidents, thankfully and surprisingly.  James was kind enough to make me some eggs with zoodles, and after a shower, I went back to bed.  The best cure for a bad mood.  It was definitely not the greatest runday 2 weeks before my next half-marathon, but it is what it is.

As well, I have just finished day 19 of The Whole 30.  My appetite has decreased, although on Saturday, I got a big case of the munchies.  I snacked on olives, dates and a baked potato.  I think I had an orange in there too.  This was about 4 p.m., and it actually ended up being my dinner as I wasn’t hungry afterwards.  11 more days.  Awesome.  And in case you’re wondering… yes, I do feel lighter on my feet during my runs.

Lastly, for those of you who have never heard communication between eagles before, I managed to get one of our resident bald eagles to open up to me, who then got the other to start talking.  I usually sing to her, but no way was I putting that on camera.  You’re welcome.

Have a great week!

Motivational Music Monday… and stuff

May is a busy month in this house.  This past week we’ve celebrated a birthday and Mother’s Day (and we still have an anniversary coming up).  We also did a happy dance when the child returned home from Hawaii.  AJ is the one buried in the sand (his father did his laundry, 😀 ).

The day before AJ came home was James’s birthday.  I bought him… (notice I said him, not us)… I bought him a nice dinner and dessert on his birthday, and when AJ got home, we celebrated properly.

It’s Sunday night, so I’m on day 12 of The Whole 30.  All of my cravings stopped on day 6.  I wasn’t even tempted with cake or naughtiness even with all the celebrations going on.  I will admit, as I hate cooking, I’m a bit tired of spending time in the kitchen, but again, it’s all in the planning.  I made enough food on Thursday and Friday to last me the weekend, and the boys were on their own.  Mostly.  I’ll always share my veggies and chili.  (#spottedtheGroot)

I also did my long run today.  It went well.  I felt strong and full of energy.  At mile 4, I ate a few too many raisins (portion control matters) and my stomach cramped up; however, as I was doing an out-and-back, I had no choice but to power through.  Sometimes not having a choice is a good thing.  I also had the trail mostly to myself.  Nice.

Although… sometimes being on the trail alone can wreak havoc with the imagination.  I wore my hydration pack, kept hearing the sloshing of water, and thought someone or someTHING was stalking me as it sounded like the bushes rustling.  I don’t have a clue what bedded down in this huge patch of grass the previous night, but I’m glad it was gone (the grass is actually as high as my hips).  The blades were clearly flattened right smack in the middle:

A successful week in eating and a successful week in running (with even some cycling thrown in for good measure), so now on to Motivational Music Monday by 50 in 50 Marathon Quest.

Tonight (Mother’s Day), U2 are here in concert, so James opted to pay tribute to them.  I’m not a big U2 fan, so I’ll pass on playing a U2 song.  I will, however, follow suit with the title. “It’s A Beautiful Day” has helped me pick up my step during many a long run… and it’s Michael Bublé. It just doesn’t get any better than that.

Hoping all y’all have a happy week!!

Hypoglycemia and The Whole 30

I’ve suffered from hypoglycemia (low blood sugar) my entire life.  I was 6 when I had my first hypoglycemic episode that I can actually remember.  I was at the mall with my mother when all of a sudden, I didn’t have the energy to walk any more.  My mother knew what was happening and we immediately went to a restaurant for a burger.

I have had many episodes throughout my life.  When it happens, I start feeling anxious, then weak and dizzy, then I break out in a sweat and I develop tunnel vision.  When I was pregnant, I had gestational diabetes.  I was closely monitored by my doctors and had to check my blood sugar level 4 times a day.  I was to eat nothing that had more than 3 g of sugar per serving.  The hardest part was I only wanted to eat French toast with strawberries and whipped cream.  Bad and wrong.  Bean tostadas became my staple while I was pregnant as corn tortillas didn’t raise my blood sugar.

During the first few days of The Whole 30, I haven’t had any blood sugar issues.  I’ve paid particularly close attention to how I’ve been feeling so that I don’t get too hungry and run into a crisis, because once your blood sugar drops to 70, all bets are off and out comes the sugar.

If you suffer from hypoglycemia and try this program, do eat at regular intervals and don’t let yourself get too hungry.  The book suggests eating only 3 times a day (albeit more if you’re really hungry).  I have to eat a minimum of 4 times per day, smaller portions, and sometimes I’ll only have a hard-boiled egg just to keep my levels up.  However, with all the protein, goodness, and absence of sugar with this program, I haven’t seen nor felt any potential insulin problems. Score one for the diet!

However, with all that being said, I did have an issue in the middle of my long run on Sunday. After 4 miles, I had to make a detour home because there came a point where I couldn’t even hold my shoulders back as I felt so weak.  After James and I analyzed my food intake, we came to the conclusion that I didn’t fuel properly to sustain a long run.  Spaghetti squash, 2 ounces of chicken, and some olives the night before do not make for a good pre-load dinner, nor did the potato and banana I had for breakfast.  I need to eat way more protein with more complex carbs the night before, and truth be told, I need to eat at least some protein before my long run to power me through.

It’s all “trial and error” and “live and learn.”  I now have raisins to fuel me in the middle of my long runs (yuck), and I will try again next Sunday for better results.  In the meantime, I have an 8-mile run to make up this week during the evening sometime.  The important thing is I didn’t reach for the jelly beans and break my program.

Day-by-Day Whole 30 Playback

Day 1:  Cravings were really strong.  I wanted my tea, my desserts, my oatmeal.  By about 2 p.m., I had a minor stomachache.  I stretched myself out, and after awhile the pain was gone.  Ran 3 miles.  Energy level was good.

Day 2:  Feeling okay.  Cravings are still strong and I’m really missing my oatmeal and peanut butter.  Fought hard against that after-lunch bite of chocolate that I was in the habit of having. The craving eventually subsided.

Day 3:  Friday and usually the day we have happy hour.  Cravings are still there, but are starting to diminish somewhat.  Now I’m just missing chocolate and my peanut butter… so much so the craving has switched to the powdered peanut butter I have in the cupboard.  Here’s the kicker… I’m allergic to peanuts and peanut butter… I’ve just been able to build my immunity up to where I don’t have a reaction anymore (although I have developed a significant reaction to pistachios, so they’re completely off the list).  For happy hour, I went for a run instead and stuck to my water, then finished off the night playing a video game.  If you want things to change, then you have to adjust the routine.  Energy levels are increasing.

Day 4:  OMG, my Saturday morning tea time.  Another hard routine to break.  I didn’t break the morning routine so much as I just made do with iced tea instead of hot tea.  I still spent the entire morning on my computer catching up with everyone.  Made a huge pan of roast veggies for lunch which filled me up nicely.  Haven’t craved chocolate today, but peanut butter craving is still there. Energy level is good… maybe because sometimes I spike my water with a little iced tea.  It’s a scheduled rest day, so only house cleaning on the to-do list.

Day 5:  Long-run Sunday.  I had issues with weakness, really wanted the sugariest sugar I could find to get through, but settled on a banana.  Once I had some scrambled eggs and a nap, I was back to normal.  No cravings other than the sugar I wanted on my long run.  Was a little bit hungrier than normal to which I’ll attribute to a glucose drop.

25 more days to go!

A Smidge of an Update

Downtown River Run in Reno

I’m not going to write a big recap about this race.  Just know it was hard.  Probably the hardest 10K I’ve ever completed.  Because of Reno’s higher elevation, I couldn’t catch my breath after the first mile (this happened in SLC as well, after mile 6).  James also spent most of his race in the Red Zone because of the lack of oxygen.  But that’s not important.  We went, ran a hard race, and had a fabulous time.

The Whole 30

A couple of weeks ago, I had looked into The Whole 30 food program.  Have you heard of it? Basically for 30 days, you eat nothing but whole foods, nothing processed and nothing with sugar.  I get that it’s a variant of the low-carb craze, but really not so much.  Potatoes are whole foods, pulled right out of the ground, so they work (but they don’t work in the low-carb diets).

The premise is to detox your body from all the food processing that goes on, and then slowly reintroduce foods back into your diet to see how your body reacts.  If a certain food doesn’t make you feel so good, then guess what!  You don’t eat that food no mo’!  I needed something to get me off all of the sweets, desserts, and chips I’d been getting in the habit of eating recently, so enter The Whole 30 program.

I had the start date written on the calendar and was 100% mentally prepared.  The mental part is important.  Your brain can talk you out of anything if you let it.  I started May 2nd, so I’ve been on it a whole 2 days now.  The cravings of chocolate and chips are strong, but I shut those thoughts down by asking myself, “Am I hungry enough to eat a plate of spinach?”  If the answer is no, I drink water.  If the answer is yes, then I eat something I’ve prepared in advance so I do not fail and give in.  Again, it’s only been 2 days, but I’m hoping that I will remain strong for the entire 30 days.  Okay, not hoping, I WILL remain strong for the entire 30 days.

The foods I’ll miss and crave most are oatmeal and peanut butter, every single form of chocolate, cookie and cake, chocolate milk (I already said chocolate, didn’t I), cheese, nuts, and chips/crisps.  For my pre-run carb load, it will be a baked potato with clarified butter, although I haven’t figured out how I’m going to fuel in the middle of my long runs yet.  Maybe I can make some banana mash, place it in a baggie, and I’ll have my own GU minus all the added sugar.  I don’t know.  (For those who don’t know, GU is a nasty gel a lot of runners are forced to consume in the midst of a long run to keep their energy levels up.)

Mmmm, tastes just like bacon!!

I’ve also had to give up my morning, mid-day, and afternoon cups of tea as I use sweetener.  I now start my day with a nice cold glass of iced tea.  Super glad it’s warming up or I’d be missing my cup of hot chocolate too!  (Seeeee!  Wayyy too much chocolate!!  It’s a good thing I don’t drink soda or I’d be hurtin’ for certain!)

My other goal during this time is to do something 6 days a week, not just on scheduled run days. Yesterday I ran.  Today I was supposed to go for a bike ride, but the heavens opened up and gave us a storm from hell, so I did nothing.  A minor set-back… I’ll start again tomorrow as I’m scheduled for another 3 miles.  (And for those who are anal about their numbers… yes, I should’ve ran around until my watch said 3.1.)

And finally…

The child is having a great time in Hawaii without his parents.  Am I the only one who thinks this is completely unfair?!!

I’ll leave you now with a song for MMM… this came on during my race in Reno.  Oh the irony.  “Sucker for Pain.”  Yes indeedy.

Have a happy weekend!!

We Have Arrived…

… in Reno, that is.  I probably mentioned it like once a long time ago, but we are here for the Reno 5000 Series Downtown River Run.  I may have even possibly mentioned (or not) that both James and I have dropped down in our categories… him to the half, me to the 10K… this won’t count towards our 50-state goal for either of us.  James wants a PR this spring, so we’re holding out for a race closer to home… the North Olympic Discovery Marathon and Half in Port Angeles; one that is at sea level as opposed to 4800 feet.  (Reno is in the mountains… I never knew!) We’ll go to Las Vegas to eventually conquer Nevada, but for now we’re just here to have a good time.

We’re staying at Harrah’s Downtown, right at the start line and super close to the river.  After getting off our little propeller plane (I kid you not) and checking in, we took a lovely walk to see what the downtown had to offer.

I’ll say this… Reno is clean.  The only other downtown that I’ve seen this clean is Tulsa.  But downtown Reno is a happening place.  It’s beautiful, and it’s so refreshing to see people and government officials taking pride in their city (as opposed to Seattle which… never mind, don’t even get me started).

Anyway, the river overfloweth.  A dam floodgate near Lake Tahoe has been released to allow for melting snow over the next couple of months; therefore, the river is flowing high, fast, and furious. Wouldn’t want to be on it, but it is a beautiful sight:

#spottedthebird!  He was patient and posed nicely for me until I was done taking his picture. I’m out of my element, so I don’t have a clue what he is… where is my Sibley bird-watching book when I need it (and if any of you actually know what that book is, you’re my new BFF)!

As for news from the home front… the child is leaving Sunday on his first trip without Mom or Dad. He’s going with a friend to Maui for the next 2 weeks. I think I forgot to tell him he’s not allowed to grow up.

Now I’m off to go explore Reno and the raging river some more.  After two leg cramps in the middle of the night last night from being poorly hydrated, I’m sucking down the Nuun and water, and need to stretch out the tightness.  I logged 4 miles yesterday… we’ll aim for another 4 today, then the race tomorrow.  Should be a great time!

#spottedthehusband 🙂

 

Week In Review… with Pictures!

I’m not feeling very wordy about last week’s training, but I do have some pictures to share!

Skunk lilies! Pretty, but stinky!

Okay, truth be told, marathon training started last week with The Motivator… although that is certainly not what I was calling him by the end of our 5K together.  From here on out, until I run my marathon in October, he and I will be running together at least once a week.  This is not going to be fun, nor is it going to be pretty.  But because of it, I will succeed at crossing the finish line in the allotted time.  So I will suck it up, get pissed off, and get over it.

The Motivator’s 5K PR is 23:16, whereas I’ve not even left the chute yet. Training is about to get ugly.

But hey!  Good news!   Last week I was also able to get outside on the bike for the first time in 2017! Yay!  That means we had sunshine!  The other good news?!  My sit bones didn’t hurt!  I’m so pleased about that.  The god-awful mind-numbing bike trainer did its job… at least for now. As the weather improves, hopefully my distance and speed improve.  Then possibly I will ultimately have a picnic at the barn (my 50-miler)!!

See the above trees?  We’ve had lots of rain and wind here, which in turn have resulted in fallen trees as the ground is saturated. It won’t be long before the above fallen tree that is leaning will cause the standing tree to collapse as well.  Right across the trail.

And yes, the Easter Bunny made his annual appearance.  Probably not good to have all that chocolate in the house, but I’ll try hard not to complain.

I also have to thank Renee from The Revenge Wogger for the beautiful tulips!  She visited the Skagit Valley Tulilp Festival in my area and sent some to me as we didn’t get a chance to meet up!  So very sweet!  Thanks Renee!  They’re gorgeous!

I #spottedthe… game:  A bunny.  He was too quick to get a picture though.  Not that a bunny is on the list, but I do challenge anyone to get a good picture of a bunny.  😀

Daryl, above, is not wild, he’s domestic. I bunny-sit him during the day at work. #shakaears #imhisfavoriteauntie

Week in mileage:  20.  Keeping track so I can watch the number climb.

Hope everyone had a nice Easter, Passover, and weekend!  For those running Boston, may God bless you all!  Happy running!

 

 

Seahawks 12K At The Landing

One of the funnest races ever!

We had spirit.  We had a rockin’ atmosphere.  We had dogs everywhere.  We had bagels.

One does not run this for a PR… one runs this for fun.  And spirit.  Which we had (as stated above).

9 a.m. start time for James and the 12K.

As the race was in Renton, about an hour away from us, we opted to get up at 5 (on a Sunday… so I guess you know what I DIDN’T do last night… like drink).  Meep (cat) was none too impressed and didn’t understand why we weren’t following routine… like sleeping until 9.  Do you have any idea how hard it is to get through a morning when a half-Siamese cat is following you around and screaming at you the entire time, telling you to go back to bed??

Ignoring the cat and focusing on the task at hand, leaving promptly at 5:58, we arrived in Renton around 7 a.m.  Score! No traffic!  Empty parking lot!  Barely any people!  No line to the port-a-loos!!

A fabulously relaxing Sunday morning (#truth) as we sat in the Target Starbucks, warm and cozy, having coffee and tea, until it was time to head to the start line.  BTW… this was the line to the portables 20 minutes before my 5K race started at 9:20.  Somewhere in the distance you can see the potties (#runnersproblems).  Surprisingly, it only took me 15 minutes:

One Seahawks player, three Sea-Gal cheerleaders, and Blitz (the mascot) were on hand to send the runners off, along with the Seahawks Drum Line, Blue Thunder.  The energy was high.

Yes, it was cold at about 42 degrees.  I had my hoodie on, which I took off for the race, although I did have a warming long-sleeve underneath my Seahawks tee.

And oh yeah… a thermal warming blanket.

The start line looked like this:

And this:

And everywhere in between:

Faux-hawks, puppies, and 12th Man Spirit abound:

Somewhere amongst the 5000+ people out for a little run today, I earned this:

… the coveted 12th Man Bling!  The race tee was probably one of the best ever:

A lightweight hoodie.  The only shirt that even compares to this is Tulsa’s Route 66 Half-Marathon long-sleeved jacket, which I wear all the time:

Post race was a bagel, banana, and water.  Okay, I would’ve loved some chocolate milk AND water, but I won’t complain.

The race was great, the people were awesome,  swag amazing, and in the end, I got my chocolate milk once we got home.  That, and potato soup, courtesy of Subway.

A really great day!