Taper Time!!

Hello, strangers. It’s been so long that I am now tapering for the Philly Marathon, which is THIS Sunday!! I am sooo nervous but excited. Like I’ve said, this is my first marathon since my anemia and I have absolutely no idea how I am going to do. Some news to share with you all:

1) I got a new watch!!! Garmin Forerunner 620, courtesy of Phil for my birthday :) I really love it and it is much lighter than the Forerunner 610. It has the same touchscreen and is very easy to use. I was able to figure it out after my first run with it. It also calculates your cadence and vertical oscillation so you can check your running form – always a good thing!

watch

2) I registered for an RRCA Coaching Certification course!! This is something I’ve been wanting to do for a long time so when they finally opened up courses for 2015, I immediately signed up. Once I am all certified and junk, I hope to start working with some newbie runners and get my coaching biz rolling ;) Any takers?!

Since I am now tapering, I want to share some things I’ve been doing this week:

  • Trying to up my protein and carbs (this is never a problem). A lot of people make the mistake of ingesting a ton of carbs the day before. You should ideally start “carbo-loading” days before the marathon but don’t forget to increase your protein so your muscles can recover from all your hard work too and be fresh for race day!
  • Drinking tons of water + electrolytes: Again, start a week before!
  • Trying to foam roll everyday.
  • No alcohol :(
  • Sleeping early (again, not a problem for me)

Fingers crossed for PHILLY!!! Good luck to anyone else running!!

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Has anyone used a coach before? Anyone interested in coaching??

Any tips for Philly??

Great News and Miami!

I have some great news.

NO STRESS FRACTURE!! I am so relieved. SO relieved that I ran every single day while I was in Miami over the weekend. In the flaming heat and humidity. On the sand. It was the best.

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According to my doc, I have the beginnings of mild shin splints, which is what I thought but ALWAYS better safe than sorry. It is never, ever a good idea to run with a stress fracture. At least now I know that I can still run but I just have to take it easy for a little bit. Whew.

Other great news: I found a store that still had my Wave Rider 16s!!! I found a pair at RUN by Foot Locker. This is one store that I have never set foot in but pass on a regular basis. To be honest, I just didn’t think they would have a good selection of running shoes but I was wrong. They also have a very knowledgeable staff so I will definitely be going back there for my running shoe needs. I thought that the staff was more knowledgeable than these “specialty” running stores throughout the city. Good job, RUN.

Look at these beauties:

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I have been to Miami too many times to count and am always excited to go back because of this ONE restaurant: Puerto Sagua. It is the best Cuban food in the city. If you go to Miami, you must try it. Reasonably priced, big portions, and yummy. Another amazing place to try is Yardbird. Hands down some of the best fried chicken. The place is super cute and everything we got was delicious. My faves were the fried chicken and waffles and the fried green tomatoes. Not a very healthy weekend ha!

Chicken n’ Waffles:

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And now I am back to the daily grind- at least I can run!

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Anyone ever been to Miami? Favorite places to eat?

Who has had a stress fracture?

 

14 miles

This Saturday called for 14 miles at an easy pace. I did 14.1 miles @ about 9:40. I did two loops of Central Park and then finished my run in Riverside Park. Here is a tip: If you lack runner friends (like me) or cannot convince anyone to run 14 miles with you (like me), find a random running group(s) and secretly trail behind them during your run. I know, creepy….but it WORKS! I guess the alternative is to just join a running group…

I have recently been buying running tops from the Gap. Two years ago I would have been horrified at the thought but they recently revamped their GapFit line and it is not only very affordable but even pretty comfortable and does a fine job wicking. I have the GapFit brushed running hoodie and the GapFit motion long sleeve. I got both of them on sale for $15-20. I have worn both as a mid-layer during long winter runs and I am pretty satisfied so far. Never buy anything full price there because they are ALWAYS having sales.

This morning called for an easy 5 miles and I am going to a Swerve spin class later. Two workouts a day is kind of draining. How do you triathletes do it?!

Two Cool Things and Sneakers

Last week was a pretty cool running week for me. This is why:

1) I was sold a pair of running sneakers by an Olympian at a local running shop.

2) I ran with the men’s record holder for the most consecutive NYC marathons (he started running in 1973, I think). I was about to pass him on a run around Central Park when we started chatting. He was so nice and interesting that we ended up running the rest of the loop together. I was so in awe of his accomplishments and hope to one day do as much as he has – him and his wife have biked across country (unsupported), run marathons around the world, and obvi there’s the record thing. There are so many amazing and inspirational runners in our little city.

Back to the sneakers. I was sold the Adidas Supernova Glide 6s. I really wanted to like these shoes because I’ve never run in Adidas but did a loop around the park (see #2) and just didn’t feel comfortable in them. I think the drop may be too low for my liking and the cushioning in the front felt heavy to me.  I also tried on the new Mizuno Waver Rider 17s. I REALLY REALLY wanted to like these but the heel cup was too big and my feet were slipping out of the shoe!! I was really sad but was able to order another pair of the Wave Rider 16s on footlocker.com for half the price! I got this pair:

Now I just have to patiently wait til they arrive.

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What kind of sneakers do you run in?

Points if you guess the people in #1 and #2!

Presents!

Phil gave me JAYBIRD headphones and a new iPod nano and nano case for my birthday on Weds!

jaybirds

I’ve had my eye on the Jaybirds for a while and I especially think about how ANNOYING my earphones are during these cold, windy runs, when the earbuds would fall out of my ear and the wires would get all tangled up. We went out for a birthday run and I got to test my presents out.  During my test run with the Jaybirds, the right bud kept falling out of my ear but after changing the size of the earbud (they give you three different sizes), they fit perfectly. I also realized after my 2nd time using them that I like the cord tighter. It is so freeing to run without my sad Apple earphones and without having to carry my phone the entire time. The Jaybirds are also cool because there are controls next to the left earpiece so you can adjust the volume and change the song. I’m definitely happy with these so far! I’m also excited that I have an iPod again (I accidentally put the other iPod Phil got me in the laundry…oops).

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Anyone own Jaybirds or other wireless headphones??

My Hanson’s Method review and Another Pair of Mizunos!

Sorry, guys. I accidentally published that first post. Ok here we go again. My fourth pair of Mizuno Wave Riders and my second pair of the 16s. It was really time to replace my shoes. I had logged over 600 miles in them. I just love these shoes so much:

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I ran 10 miles in these today, mostly through Summer Streets and my ankle did not hurt one bit. Hopefully these are the answers to all my problems!! My run today also felt really good and my easy pace today was actually 1:30 min faster than the pace I’m supposed to run. I didn’t stare at my Garmin the whole time like I usually do and instead ran “easy” by gauging my effort.

20130817-135905.jpgWe have about five weeks left to Berlin and I was really losing hope because my pace wasn’t picking up and I felt sluggish and slow all the time. I know a lot of it had to do with the weather but it sure isn’t a confidence booster. However, now that it’s cooled down a bit, I’m starting to see the benefits from running in the heat combined with the Hanson’s Method.  The HM calls for four key runs: Easy, Speed/Strength, Tempo, and Long.

Easy Runs: During the easy run, your pace should be between 1:00-2:00 slower than your goal marathon pace. I obvi love the easy runs but even my easy run pace was feeling hard for me in the summer heat. Recently, I’ve been running easy based solely on effort and I think this has really helped. Let your effort dictate your pace, not vice versa.

Speed/Strength Workouts:  I actually really enjoy these runs because each week is different. It’s kind of exciting to see what the next workout is going to be. These workouts are meant to be hard and your pace is dictated by a 5k/10k goal. I was very discouraged by these runs because most of my speed workouts were done in the heat and my pace was about 0:30 slower than my pace goal. However, these few weeks, during my strength workouts, my pace has picked up and I am a lot closer to my pace goal. As you continue to do these workouts, your pace will get better. The key is to commit and be consistent.

Tempo Runs: These are the hardest for me because tempo runs are marathon pace runs at a longer distance.  Your tempo runs are a good way to determine what your marathon pace will be. I have not been able to sustain my pace goal for the entirety of the run and may have to scale back my goal, but that’s okay. The important thing is to, again, be consistent with your pace and know what you can sustain for 26.2 miles.

Long Runs: These should also be between 1:00-2:00 slower than marathon pace. I’ve been pretty loose with my long runs, running at what feels easy for me. By the time your long run comes around, your legs are really tired after 3 consecutive days of running, including a tempo run. So, it’s okay that your pace is a little slower because on race day, your legs will be refreshed.

I am starting to see the benefits of the Hanson’s Method. I definitely feel the effects of the cumulative fatigue but as the weeks go by, my legs are less affected by the fatigue and are able to perform better. You will likely be discouraged in the first half of training but things will start to pick up toward the second half, after your body has adjusted and grown stronger.

5 more weeks!!!!

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-Anyone ever try the Hanson’s Method?? I’m so curious to hear from others who have!

-Anyone training for a fall marathon? How are you training?

HOT HOT HOT

Yesterday was my hardest run yet. I did a few dumb things:

  1. I waited until 2 pm to start my 12 mile run
  2. I did not bring any water with me
  3. I did not bring any nutrition with me
  4. I wore a thick, black tank top (see updated fave gear)
  5. I did not bring an extra hair tie with me 

As a result of said above, I ran into a running store to buy a new top:

Brooks Versatile EZ Racer Back Tank Top - Women's

I bought mine for $27 but they have it on sale here for $19.19. I think they run big so go a size down if you can. I got it in XS and it was still kind of big on me but I wasn’t complaining about the loose fit at ALL. 

I then continued on my run into Rock Creek Park, one of my favorite running spots in all of DC because you can really just get lost in the scenery and also because there is SHADE! Despite the shade, it was probably 150% humidity and I was drenched by mile 3. And when I say drenched, I mean I looked like I had been caught in a downpour. It was so humid my sweat was not evaporating. I was getting weird, disgusted looks. However, I finished my 12 miles and ended up at CVS guzzling coconut water. 

Oh, summer training. You’ll suffer in the summer, but run faster in the fall. Gotta love/hate it.