Week 5: August 24- August 30

This week was my down week, I needed to take care of my calf to make sure it does not turn into my 10th stress fracture… Actually I have lost count of how many stress fractures I have had on my right leg. I do know I have had 3 in the past 18 months. So taking care of my pains before they get bad is highly recommended right now.  I am super proud of myself for taking this week easy. When it comes to running miles I have a hard time stopping myself. I won’t lie, on Monday morning when the cross country runners went out  for their run, it took everything in me to stay behind.

This weeks summary is a little lengthy, I hope I don’t bore you to death…

Monday, August 24

60 minute spin. I use to take spin classes, but on a residence salary that will not happen, so luckily at the local gym they have spin bikes you can use freely. Thank goodness I have taken enough spin classes in my life time that I know how to cover 60 minutes on the bike without getting bored. I usually take a bit longer to warm up,( I think I am getting older) so I pedal in different forms for about 15 minutes. Once I have warmed up, I like to get my legs moving faster, so I do a a few sets of a tempo interval. This typically ranges between 1 to 4 minute intervals at a tempo effort. For example, I did 4 sets of 1 minute tempo/ 30 seconds recovery spin. This type of effort prepares me for hills and sprints that are to come later in the workout. Next is my favorite, a hill climb. Here I increase the resistance every 30 seconds until I can no longer pedal. Once I reach that stage I can move into a standing position on the bike. This allows me to keep going, I can even keep increasing the resistance if I want or I can do some sprints at the top of my imaginary hill. After each hard effort, I take a 1-2 minute spin recovery which is when I decrease the resistance and just let my legs spin freely. When I have about 7 minutes left I usually start my cool down, which is when I just relax and let my heart rate come back to normal. When you add all sorts of mini intervals in a workout, it makes the activity go by so much quicker. You can just focus on 4-5 minute segments with 2 minute recovery segments at a time and before you know it you have gone through 5 sets and your workout is almost over.

Anyways moving on to my week of training, in the afternoon I did a weight circuit. IT was a bit different than my usual circuit. I wanted to change it up a bit and try to hit a few different muscles.

Tuesday, August 25

This was a pretty boring day. I hopped on the elliptical for an hour. I did not do anything crazy intense on it. Just glided along at a consistent pace. Afterwards I went through a mini ab circuit as well as did my rehab exercises.

Wednesday, August 26

am: Well this was an exciting day. First thing in the morning I had to wake up to go to cross country practice. I am in charge of helping the women’s team build a bit more strength. In my opinion the best way to build strength is swimming. You can get so much stronger in more ways than one. Being a distance athlete sometimes it is hard to get your heart rate up high enough on an elliptical, so I say jump in the pool and do a few laps. You can really get your lungs and arms burning! Anyways, I watched the lady’s swim for about half an hour before I headed to the gym to get my Spin on. I once again Spinned for an hour. I did not do as many hills in my workout. I focused more on sprints this day. As long at my right leg stays healthy I am planning on racing in a few weeks and I need to get some speed and turnover in these legs.  After I spinned I did a few stretches and rehab exercises.

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pm: (lunch time) I was so jealous watching the lady’s swim. I wanted to badly to jump in with them. Therefore I decided to jump in a pool that afternoon. I did a workout that takes roughly 45 minutes and it really makes those lungs burn. I will write a post later this up coming week with some swim workout ideas that I stick to on a regular basis, since this blog is getting  a little long already and I am only on Wednesday.

Thursday August 27.

My plans this week were to cross train for about 2-3 days, and get worked on by a massage therapist before I resume running. Check… and Check! I was pretty eager to get running yesterday, but one more day now is better than 2 weeks off later. The massage I had was by Chris Alvarado. He did a really great job. He had some special training with an osteopath, and was able to get my SI joint back in place and work out the knots in my lower calf, specifically the posterior tibialis muscle. Since I felt normal again I went for a 6 mile jaunt. The run felt great. My legs were able to move more freely and I did not feel twisted. There was a slight pulling sensation in my calf, but I know it is just tight from having my body twisted up for the past several weeks. After the run I used the foam roller and ice on the calf to take extra care of the poor leg. My run really did go well. I ran much faster on my usual course, maybe this is because I was rested from running or maybe it was because I had been adjusted. Who knows, I am just happy to run! ( 6 miles in 43:58 for an average pace of 7:19)

Friday August 28.

Workout day! I really wanted to get on the track and do something fast. I want to feel fast again. However, I am not ready to get on the track, especially this week since i had a little hiccup. So, what is something I can do without upsetting my leg too much… In my opinion, it is a fartlek! My coach back in high school called these workouts “Speed Play”. This is a way to make me feel fast without the pressures of being on a track. I did one of my favorite fartleks. This particular fartlek I use to do in college quite a bit. We ran IMG_3802around the one mile loop and you were suppose to get in just over 4 loops in the 30 minutes. The workout…. 30 minutes alternating 1 minute hard and one minute easy. To me this is equivalent to 15x 300 meter repeats. I definitely get to feel faster do this. the total workout including warm up and cool down was 8.5 miles in a time of 1:01:21 for an average pace of 7:13. I did cover 4.5 miles in the 30 minutes during the fartlek, the mile times for those 4 miles were 6:23, 6:26, 6:51, and 6:37.  I was pretty happy with the effort. the fast part I was able to stay around 5:20-5:30 pace which is what I wanted. Overall, a great workout for the week!

Saturday August 29

Long run day!! Nothing to exciting here, just 14 easy miles. The Columbia College cross country team headed out to some grasslands. This means softer surfaces, slower runs, and saved legs. Basically when you run on grass it is like running on a pillow. My legs do not ache at all after running of fields of grass. However, I do tend to run quite a bit slower. But that is ok. Not every run needs to be blistering fast. Good news my calf did not bother me at all on this 14 miler. I was nervous Friday night because it definitely knotted itself up.  I foam rolled and iced multiple times Friday night as well as after the run on Saturday. Total time was 1:47:42 for a 7:42 pace.

Sunday August 30

REST DAY

Overall miles for the week.. 28.5, I needed a down week and I needed to make sure my calf was healthy to run on. I have to constantly remember what my goals are and how it is not important to rush and just hope that the little nagging sensations will disappear on there own. Looking into the week ahead, I will go by feel. I woulds like to get in mile repeats or a tempo run. As far as mileage, I am not going to set a goal. I see a massage therapist on Monday evening, so that will be a huge indicator of what my week may look like. I will also spin and get in some fast leg turnover work on the bike as well as hop in the pool again. I think the swimming helps my legs feel fresh and revitalized.

Stay tuned….

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PS.. I felt pretty pleased with myself by using my aqua jogging belt to block Samson from trying to come up front with me when we are headed to the dog park… Don’t worry mom, I took this picture in my driveway!

Week 4: August 17- August 23

Sorry this is a bit late, but better late than never. I am not sure if I just got busy or if I was too lazy to post this yesterday. Anyways, a summary of my week, I did reach my goal of hitting 50 miles. My workout this week was not ideal. I wanted to be about 5-10 seconds faster on each interval. However, I have to keep in mind that when i usually do mile repeats I have been on a track so that could potentially be a reason I did not hit the times I had hoped for. As the week went on, I trained normally, to end the week with a great long run. It was the best I had felt in a long time! I definitely gained a boost of confidence from the long run. So here it is folks:

Monday August 17:

am: 7.2 miles at 7:27 pace

pm: 3 miles, I forgot my watch, but I think it was around an 8 minute mile pace, I took DO, with me, so once again it was super easy and just to shake out my legs.

Tuesday August 18:

am: 60 minute elliptical

pm: 60 minute body circuit, this consists of a combination of weights and body work using the swiss ball, bosu ball, blocks, medicine balls, and a foam roller.

Wednesday August 19:

am: So I have decided I will not do my body weight circuit the day before a workout, I think I am going to switch the circuit to be done after my workouts in the afternoon. My plan is that this will help me legs to feel a bit fresher.  As for my actual workout the total was about 9ish miles with 5×1 mile repeats with 3 minutes rest. mile splits: 6:06, 6:01, 5:59, 6:12 (uphill), 6:13 (uphill)

Thursday August 20:

8 miles easy at 7:24 average pace. I didn’t fell normal on this run. Probably a bit tired from the workout.

Friday August 21: REST DAY

Saturday August 22:

It was such a great run, I just ran by feel and killed it. this run was the first run that I felt super relaxed and like myself. I totaled 14 miles in 1 hour and 40 minutes, my splits per mile are as follows, (Keep in mind this was not an actual “workout” I just went by feel.) 8:09, 7:41, 7:33, 7:07, 7:01, 7:05, 7:01, 7:01, 6:54, 7:00, 7:11, 6:55, 6:50, 6:37.Good DAY!

Sunday August 23,

Guess what… I was not feeling it today, maybe the long run hit me harder than I thought it would. I just ran super relaxed. It was super duper easy. I wanted to make sure I did the true definition of a recovery run. I believe I did great staying under control. I tend to push it when I do not like my mile splits. I am trying to learn from my past mistakes. I ended up running 8 miles at 7:52 pace.

Overall I thing this was a pretty solid week of running. I totaled 50 miles which is what I was hoping to run. Next week I will back it off a bit in my mileage. As Sunday progressed my leg started to hurt a bit, So I figured I am probably due for a down week. I want to make sure I stay healthy. The plan is to cross train for a few days. I see a massage therapist tomorrow, hoping he can help my leg feel better. I would still like to get in a solid workout towards the end of the week if my leg is not bothering me. I am trying to be smarter this time around. Instead of running through the pains thinking it will get better I am resting the legs from running and adding extra strength training and continuing with the good ole cross training routine.

Stay Tuned!

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Week 3 Training: Monday, August 10- Sunday August 16

Here we go… Today marks my last day of training for week 3. Well, technically tomorrow is my last day, but I went ahead and did my long run today which will allow for tomorrow to be my much needed day of rest. I am not running much compared to many runners vying for the same destination as myself, however, I am training as smart as I can possibly train. Which means not getting ahead of myself with the excitement of racing and achieving my goals. This week was a bit different due to it being my first week helping out with Columbia College’s cross country team. Things that might have affected this weeks training the most is probably a later start time. Since I have been in Arizona for the past few year I have been able to avoid humidity. Now I have been bombarded with the joys of running in what feels like a rain forest, as well learning that hills do indeed exist. They come in all shapes and sizes too. I will touch more on the hill topic later. Anyways moving forward here is a look at my training this week…

Monday August 10:

am: 6 miles in 44:49, pace=7:27

pm: 3 mile shake out run, I took D.O. the vizsla with me, which slows me down. I am trying to teach hi how to run with me. overall time– 24:15 for an average pace of 8:04.

Tuesday August 11:

am: Cross train . 60 minutes on elliptical

pm: 75 minute weight circuit.

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With these 4 items, a lot can be done!

Wednesday August 12:

am: total miles 9: with 4 mile tempo in the middle. I ran an average pace of 6:15, which is kind of what I expected to run. I secretly hoped I would be more around 6:05 pace, but I ran on rolling hills, which I am not use to. While in Arizona, everything was pretty flat and straight. Before I did this workout I debated on whether or not I should do it on the treadmill. I knew it would be faster if I did and give me more confidence. But, if I think logically, my races will not be on a treadmill.

Thursday August 13:

am: 7 miles in 53:25, pace 7:35

pm: 65 minute weight circuit, very similar to what I did on Tuesday.

Friday August 14:

am: 9.22 miles, 1:08:10, pace, 7:24

pm: LOTS of stretching

Saturday, August 15:

Alright, today I ran with the boys team at Columbia College. Originally I was planning on running 14 miles with 6x1mile within the run, but we went out to a new road. IT WAS HILLY!!! So I changed my plan, and only ran 14 miles with no repeats, I will most likely do the repeats on Monday. We completed the run in 1:41:28, for an average pace of 7:15.I was happy with this run because it was my farthest run in probably 7 months. Also to run that pace on the hills was good enough for right now. I am looking forward to running there again and seeing how I handle it when I have a few more longer run under my belt. With only 3 other runs longer than 10 miles, I think I held up well enough.

Sunday, August 16

REST Day

Summing up the week.. I made it a total of 48.6 miles this week. Which means I am slowly increasing my mileage. I did my first “real” workout. Thank goodness I got that out of the way.

Looking into next week. My plan is to increase my mileage a bit more, hoping for around 52 miles. Also, the plan is to have 2 workouts in next week.

Stay tuned…

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Past 2 weeks of training

Over the past few weeks, I have debated about whether or not I should post my training to this blog. Ultimately I have decided to share my journey and become a bit more vulnerable. This way the athletes that I coach can see what I am doing along the way and others who may just want to compare notes can have a glance. My biggest goal as of now is to stay injury free until January.  I wanna see how fast I can get in these next several months. I want to put it all out there. So if any one has any advice or questions please comment below or should me a message under the contact me page.

So here it comes the past 2 ” more serious” weeks of training.

Week 1: July 27- August 2

Monday July 27:

:am run: 6 miles,  43:22, pace: 7:14

pm run: I meant to run 3 miles but it was super hot, and I took my husband with me so we only did 2 miles in 17:31, 8:45 pace

Tuesday July 28:

am 1st run: took the dog running.. 4 miles, 30:31, pace: 7:38

am 2nd run: about 2 hours later I had to go help a girl I coach do a workout so we ran an additional 6 miles, 51:30, 8:35 pace

Wednesday July29:

am run: 8 miles in 1:00:08, 7:31 pace

Thursday July 30:

Cross train day.. 60 minute elliptical plus weight and abs.

Friday July 31:

am run: 8 miles, 58:56, 7:22 pace

Saturday August 1

REST DAY

Sunday August 2:

am run, 12 miles, 1:26:12, 7:11 pace

Total miles for week of July 27- August 2: 46 miles, Not too bad. One thing I am doing this time around is making sure I get in my cross training. Even if that means I only run  days a week. I need to take care of my bones!

Week 2: Aug 3- Aug 9

Monday August 3

am run: 6 miles, 42:38, 7:01 pace

pm run: 3 miles with the husband, 23:46, 7:55 pace

Tuesday August 4

Cross train 60 minutes plus Weights and Abs

Wednesday August 5

am run: 8 miles 57:28, 7:11 pace (2 of the miles were faster just trying to get my legs moving, (6:11 and 6:09))

Thursday August 6

am run: 9.1 miles 1:07:11, 7:23 pace

Friday August 7

REST DAY

Saturday August 8

I ran a 5k race, total miles for the day 8.2 , the 5k went well, According to my garmin I ran 3.16 in 18:18 and I hit the 5k mark at 18:04. I am pretty happy with the 18:04 5k time. Now I have a foundation to actually start doing some workouts in the near future.

Sunday August 9

13.1 miles, 1:36:43, 7:23 pace.

Total miles for the week of August 3-9: 47.4, once again, I am pretty happy with this past week. I am looking to hopefully increase my miles this upcoming week as well as add in a bit of speed.

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Stay tuned!

 

 

The past twelve months…

Twelve months ago I started a new venture,  I hung my running shoes up on the door and started my first teaching job. This was not just any ordinary teaching position. This one was special.  At first glance most would probably have ran out the door as quickly as possible with the idea of teaching where I taught, while others would have felt like it was their chance to portray  Michelle Pfeiffer in Dangerous Minds or Hilary Swank in Freedom Writers. I wont lie part of me liked the idea of changing the lives of inner city kids.

Twelve months ago, I had become weak! Twelve months ago, I walked through the doors of this High School looking to be challenged. Twelve months ago, I wanted to enter into to unfamiliar ground. I needed to be shaken. I was desperate to find the strength I felt like I had lost.

On the second day of school a student stood up and closed his notebook. I told the student it was not time to put things up, and that I was still going over our syllabus, He picked up his notebook and preceded to  through it right towards my direction informing me that he was done.

On the last day of school I had a room full of students who would not leave my classroom.  Several of them followed me out to my car begging me not to leave. My time with them had come to an end.

Did I step into unfamiliar ground?…. Yes!

Was I shaken?… Umm. TOTALLY!

Did I find the strength I had lost?… Most Definitely!

This past year I was challenged in a whole new way. I was given the mental and emotional strength I needed to continue on with my own dreams.  As the new year approaches, Good Luck to all my old students! I sure will miss you and you all will hold a special place in my heart!!

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Twelve Months ago, I started running again, with the hopes of setting my Olympic Trials Qualifying Standard. I ran a few races and ran the fastest 5k  since college. This really boosted my confidence to train harder and really commit to the work that needed to be done. I was looking to run in the Eugene Marathon this past May, When I was sidelined by yet another 2 stress fractures.  I was able to work my way up to a few 15 mile runs before these injuries crept into my bones.

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Twelve months ago, was the start of James’s 4th year of medical school. YAY!! He was almost done. I can not express how proud I am of him for working so hard through school. When May came around, I could not wait for him to walk across that stage.

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Which brings me to present day….. James has started his residency and is in the full swing of things.  While I have started training once again. Hoping these past twelve months have taught me and strengthened me to continue onward through my journey.

Stay tuned for updates..

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