Sunday, November 25, 2012

I Run for Stuffing.

Considering this week was full of turkey and stuffing and shopping, I still managed to log some miles and get some good workouts in!

Since Thursday was Thanksgiving, Emily and I decided to have Tempo Thursday on Tuesday.  It's still new in our routine so we're still excited to do speed work.  Let's see how long that actually lasts.

This week we did a pyramid workout and this is what it looked like:

It was tough because there were no mental breaks like in repeats...even the easy intervals got not so easy towards the middle.  And, it doesn't help your confidence when one of the local running clubs of super fast runners is doing their weekly speed workout on the same track.  If I had a dollar for every person that lapped me on this workout I'd have enough money to pay a year's worth of race entry fees.

Wasn't the best tempo workout, but not the worst.  Meh.

In other news, I've decided that my new favorite Thanksgiving tradition is running a race Thanksgiving morning.  Gives me an excuse to take a pre-dinner nap, and also justifies about 6 extra helpings of stuffing.

I was extra excited for this year's Turkey Trot because I was doing it in Syracuse with my sister.  Since running races in costumes is my jam, I decided to craft up a sweet costume for me and Heather.  After breaking a pair of scissors, burning my finger on the hot glue gun, and cutting my lip on a safety pin... I was left with the most poorly executed race costume ever.   

When I showed my mom, she thought we were being a horseshoe.  Really, Ma?!  (For the record, it's supposed to be a wishbone).  Looked fab in my head.... not so much in real life.  Better luck next time.

It was perfect weather for a race and I forced Heather to run with me even though she busts out 7 minute miles like it's nothing but a thing.  She chatted my ear off the entire 3.1 miles and didn't even break a sweat.  How come I didn't get the fast runner gene?

Steph and her dad ran this race last year and Steph sold me on doing it this year because she said it was a flat out and back course.  Apparently when I registered though, the race organizers could sense my I HATE HILLS mantra and decided to change the course this year to include, you guessed it, hills.  Regardless, it was a good course with great crowd support.  And having my own personal pacer chatting away made the race fly by.  Overall a fantastic way to kick off the holiday. 

You know what's almost as exciting as running a race on Thanksgiving?  Knowing someone who is running their first race ever on Thanksgiving!  DC Chris (who ran sprinted the Rochester half marathon in September) and his brother Jeff ran the Turkey Trot in Webster and this was Jeff's very first race.  I sadly missed his race debut but even without my superb cheerleading skills, they rocketed through the course and killed it.  Congrats Jeff on your first race!!

Bro's in beast mode

After 2 days of being in a food coma, I forced myself to go to the gym yesterday.  I didn't have anyone to run with, and since it was cold my motivation to go out on my own was zero.  Off to the gym it was. 

Thirty minutes at the gym reminded me why I actually prefer to run outside in the snow.  The treadmill is SO. BORING.  I felt like I was dying a slow death.  I did 1.3 miles and felt like I was on there for an hour.  Even the 2 miles on the elliptical felt torturous.  I went fast, I went amount of intervals could make the gym bearable.  Get me out of here.

What do you do when you are on the verge of death from boredom and still have energy to burn?  Decorate for Christmas!

And the best way to round out a holiday filled weekend is with a Sunday morning long run!  The whole gang met up early this morning for a run that ended up being a little over 6 miles.  We ran on the canal, streets and trails and it was an awesome run.  WAY better than last weekends long run disaster.  Of course there was breakfast afterwards.  Nothing better than a good run, good company and a good breakfast on a Sunday morning!

I logged a whopping 14 miles this week which is significantly higher than the 3 I logged two weeks ago.  Slowly but surely getting my base back up so I can jump into January training ready to go!  No fun races on the cal this week, but lots of wintery runs in store I'm sure!

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Smorgasbord Week

Last week seemed to be just the kind of kick-off week I needed because I actually logged some great workouts this week!

I traded in my run last Saturday to volunteer at a day of trail races.  There were two races that day and I got there around 8am to help with the post-race food set up for race #1.  Let me tell you, I really took the amazing post race food spreads for granted.

When you're tired and hungry after a race, you get so excited to see food that you don't even think about where it came from.  What do you mean the race food fairy doesn't magically make it all happen?!  I now have a whole new appreciation for the food I stuff my face with after a race.

My job duty for race #2 was water girl.  Sweet!  I've always wanted to man a water stop.  My co-water girl and I got a bit lost on the way to our stop but made up for it with our enthusiasm and superb water handling skills.  Who knew handing cups of water to sweaty runners could be so much fun?!

 Seeing these crazy runners run two trail races in one day inspired me to get my butt moving the next day.  Since it was gorgeous out on Sunday, I decided to bring out Mr. Trek before he gets put away for the winter.

I headed out on the canal for a 20 mile solo ride.  My plan was to do an out-and-back and I was feeling great when I hit my 10 mile turn-around point.

And then, literally 37 seconds after this picture was taken, I got a flat.  WHY.  Well I know why....I've been needing to buy a new tire for months, but I've been too stubborn to shell out the money to replace the poor thing.  Oh hey karma, thanks for slapping me in the face.

Thank god for friendly bikers on the canal - I struggled for 20 minutes after I got my wheel off until some riders stopped and helped me out.  And by help me out I mean fixed my flat for me.  Somehow I still managed to get filthy:

After my unplanned pit stop, I was nervously back on the canal to finish my ride.  The women who stopped to help me told me I needed a new tire like yesterday and asked how much longer I had to ride.  When I told her 10 more miles she laughed and said "good luck."  Thankfully I avoided any further flats on my way back.

20 miles and 1.5 hours later I was home safe and sound.  Well, that's not true.  According to Garmin, my elapsed time was 2 hours and 10 minutes.  That means I spent 40 minutes changing my flat.  I should probably work on my bike mechanic skillz.

Monday I did some Jillian Michaels and just about died.  I'm blaming Jillian for my crazy slow run on Tuesday night.  Nothing exciting about this run.  Re-acquainted myself with Cobbs Hill.  Remembered why I stopped running hills.

Emily and I had grand plans to run after work on Wednesday.  She came over, we got geared up, we headed outside......and then this happened:

No, my Garmin didn't break.  We turned around and walked back inside.  And bailed on our run.  I've bailed on plenty of runs before, but usually once I get my gear on and I'm out the door my mind is made.  I'm running.  I've never actually walked outside, walked 50 yards, and turned back around.  Can't win em all I guess.

The lack of effort on Wednesday meant that it was time to kick my own butt on Tempo Thursday.  On tap this week?  1/2 mile repeats.  Four of them.  Using my two mile time trial time as a base, I used this God-sent tool to figure out that I had to complete each 800m repeat in 4:58--5:13.  And by golly would you take a look at these splits:

It's crazy what a little focus can make you do.  It was definitely a tough workout and I was pretty maxed out at the end of each repeat.  But....I had fun!  I'm not sure if it was the change of scenery running on the track, or the fact that it was something different than just... running, but I really liked it!  Welcome back to my life, Tempo Thursday!

I'd really like to end this on a positive note, so I'm only going to say one thing about today's run: it sucked.  That is all.

Without my running buddies this morning, I surely would have keeled over and died (or, more realistically, turned around and walked back to my car).  Toughest, hilliest run in a long time and my legs didn't show up for the party.  Erasing all memories of this

Week two of logging more than one mile....success.

Friday, November 9, 2012

Bringing the 'Miles' back to 'Molly's Miles'

As you could probably tell from my lack of daily life updates, my activity has been pretty lax the past three weeks.  I may be starting training in January for a big spring event (more on that another time) so this week was my "ease back into that thing called running" week.  In case you're wondering what I've been doing with my life until now.....

...I've been riding bikes through the city of DC...

...And posing around the Nation's Capital in my Fleet Feet team shirt...

...And buying Lululemon headbands with my best friend and DC hostess...

...Then I DIY'd some mouse costumes for a Halloween 5k.  Martha Stewart has nothing on my crafty skills and the real three blind mice have nothing on our running prowess....

...I did a handful of runs here and there, and I'm confident that Garmin needs to start paying me for all this free publicity:

...Had my Runiversary and PR'd in my anniversary 5k.  In case you forgot:

...Went for a 5am run one morning.  Happened to be the day after election day.  Got stopped mid-run and interviewed for the news...  

Does my headlamp make me look smarter?
I was fighting off crowds of fans for days after this.

...Brought back Tempo Thursday.  Two mile time trial on the track...

...In the pitch black...

...And somehow still managed my best two mile time trail to date...

I guess the girl still has it in her after all.  Welcome back, Molly's Miles.  Time to get the show back on the road.

Saturday, November 3, 2012


What better way to come back from my 3 week long blog hiatus than on the day of my "Runiversary"!

One year ago today I ran my first 5k.  It took me 42 loooong minutes.  I crossed the finish line dead and exhausted but on cloud nine.

That finish line in November 2011 was the start of an amazing journey that has changed me inside and out.  365 days ago I would never have imagined that this is where I would be today.

Today, I ran that very same 5k.  I crossed the finish line in 33:22.  As I pushed myself as hard as I could during those 3.1 miles, I was thinking about how far I've come over the past year.

Running has changed me for the better -- mentally, physically, emotionally.  I love where I am at in my life right now and, as crazy as it may sound, I have running to thank for getting me here.  It has become my stress reliever, my social life, my anti-depressant, my passion.

Today I shaved nine minutes off my time from last year, and I ran through the finish line this morning with a new 5k PR.  I left my heart on the course this morning and I wouldn't have it any other way on my one-year running anniversary.

All I can say is, what a difference a year makes.  My one year Runiversary is even sweeter then I imagined, and you better believe there will be many, many more to come!