Saturday, March 31, 2012

Race the Rabbit 5k Race Recap

the kids and I enjoying some post race festivities
 The Race the Rabbit 5k was held at Zoo Montana and the proceeds went to the Make a Wish Foundation.  I was a little curious what kind of route it would be at the zoo as there are a lot of curves and small hills throughout. 

They had the starting line at the back of the zoo on the service road, there were also three porta potties sitting there which didn't seem like very many, but I only had to wait a couple minutes to use one so that was good.

I did a warm up loop on the route and got a little worried as there were a lot of potholes in the road and it didn't always seem clearly marked.  There was also a really curvy section and more hills than I remembered. When I ran past the wolf exhibit two wolves ran along the fence with me. 

I was  coming off of a very high mileage week so I wasn't sure how my legs were going to feel for the race, but I did feel pretty tough wearing my Team Tough Chik tank for the first time in a race.

I lined up near the front, it looked like a bit of a cluster as it was a wide start and it rapidly narrowed.  The gun went off and so did we.  The first mile felt really good and was spent passing people who went out too fast.  I ran it in 6:42, which my have been a little too fast for me also. 

The second mile felt good for the most part, but I was starting to feel all those miles this week.  I did continue to pass people, mostly guys.  I am sure they loved getting passed by a girl in bright blue zebra knee high socks and a shirt that said "This is what tough looks like" on the back.  HA!

We also looped back around during the second mile so that we were now running back the way we had came and running into people.  It wasn't as bad as I thought it would be and only had to push past someone once. Second mile was 7:01

The third mile was hard!  There seemed to be lots of hills and turns and curvyness in the trail.  I even missed a turn and ended up hurdling a rope fence to get back on track.  The best part was I got to repass a guy I had passed just before I missed the turn and he didn't.  Mile three 7:08

I was ready to be done and glad I only had another .10 miles at this point, but no it was really another .26 miles.  I was really glad to see the finish line and finished at 22:39.  I ended up second female overall and was a top ten finisher which earned me a Walmart Gift Card for $25.  Nice!

My Mom brought in the kids and we hung out for kid races and an Easter Egg hunt.  All of which was chaotic and fun for the kids. 
Mom and my kids and my sister's kids

My sis ran too, here we are with all our kids.
Crazy easter egg hunt, not sure where my kids are, but I found them eventually!

 All in all it was a fun morning.  Perfect weather, an interesting course and lots of fun! I would do this one again. 

Friday, March 30, 2012

What to wear?

I am doing a Race the Rabbit 5k this weekend and am going to wear my Tough Chik tank.  I was digging through my closet yesterday trying to figure out what to wear with it.

Help me decide!
Warning: Picture Overload!

 I picked up this great purple running skirt last fall on clearance at Target.  I wouldn't wear it for a longer run (the little shorts underneath don't stay put very well), but for a 5k it would be fine.

Here are the sock options to go with it, front and side view of the first. It is yellow, white and blue argyle.  The blue goes great but I am not so sure about the yellow.

Option 2 sock, is a brighter blue but is a fun zebra type pattern.
or maybe just like this, one of both? 
Kidding! or maybe with normal socks that would barely show above my shoes (I cheated and just pushed the socks down here)

and a closer look at the purple skirt, it really does match this shirt pretty awesome!
or there is this black and purple Bibbity skirt that I have been wanting to race in.  I wore calf sleeves here but I think I would run without, if I picked this one. You can tell I was getting tired of taking pictures of myself here, these two sadly were the best I could manage.

The skirt without the reflective stripe reflecting so you can see the colors better. I don't think the skirt matches as well, but I think this is a better skirt for longer races, the undies underneath are great!
Okay so tell me what you think!

Anyone else racing this weekend?
p.s. this little dog

is home.  My sister found him at her house yesterday.  :)

Thursday, March 29, 2012

Three Things Thursday

1. I lost my dog on my run today.  One minute he was there running with me and then he was chasing deer and then he was GONE.  I wasn't too worried at first as he chases deer a lot, but he always comes back. I looked for him for awhile, but figured he would either head home or head to my sis in laws where my kids and car were. 
Come home little Cola dog!

I got back and no dog, so the kids and I drove the run route, no dog.  I went home thinking maybe he went home. Nope.  My sis in law texted to say he was there and she would bring him over when she came over to pick up her kid.  Great.

Later she texted back to say he was gone.  i am hoping he shows back up here soon.  We only live about 3 miles apart as the crow flies or 5 miles by road.  So if he isn't home soon I will go drive around and yell for him.

2. You may remember a month or so ago seeing the GU Challenge on Strava to run 100 or more miles between March 9 to April 9.  I remembered today I was doing that so I downloaded all my workouts and am sitting at 118 miles.  They only take miles from GPS units not manually loaded mileage, so the ten or so miles I ran without my Garmin last weekend doesn't count.

I kind of want to keep it under 150 miles because I LOVE PB GU and while I love roctane too, it does not compare to peanut butter GU!  I free 8 pack of it..YAY!  I know I won't hit 200 miles but that is a pretty cool prize too. 

The fun part is I am sitting pretty good, 241 out of 3859 people that entered, of course maybe there are a lot of other people out there who are like me and just waiting to download all their workout.

 I like Strava, but I doubt I will use it much after this challenge. I am comfortable on DailyMile and all my buddies are already there, I can't seem to find anyone I know on Strava.

3. I was reminded today how much better Lulu skirts are than the other ones I have with shorties underneath.  I wore a really cute Nike skirt but the little shorts kept riding up and it was really really irritating. I have 4 lulu skirts and am now POSITIVE I need MORE!  I am also loving Bibbity skirts, but they aren't as fun as the lulu ones and I think I prefer shorts underneath to undies.

Saving up for one of these.  I love the one on the right, it is fun and girly and the one on the left is more sleek and I think it would be great for marathoning.

 Anyone else doing the Strava GU challenge? 

 Would you rather have roctane GU or Peanut butter GU?

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Random Marathon Training Thoughts, would love any input!

I got in a 7 mile recovery run this morning and then had to take the kids in to the dentist to get their cavities filled.  I think they were a lot more excited about it than I was. Of course my son also picked this day to grow out of his jeans so I had to go jeans shopping for him as well.  He was shocked that he could be wearing a size 6 when he was only 5. 

He was sure that he wouldn't be wearing them until he turned 6.  Good thing sizes don't work that way once you get older.  I hope I never wear a size 34 this year!

My legs were really feeling the 21 mile run from yesterday.  I am glad I still have three months to get in lots of longer runs and feel more confident about them.  I was feeling really done after 21 miles yesterday and have a hard time imagining finishing a marathon without falling over in agony at this point.  I suppose the race day excitement helps a little bit, but wow, this is really hard.  \

Not that I expected marathon training to be a piece of cake.  I remember the first year I trained for a half marathon and feeling like my whole lower body was wanting to fall into pieces at the end of a 12 mile run.  12 miles now feels like a piece of cake or at least is a whole lot easier. 

I am worried about getting an injury between now and then but there isn't a whole lot of sense wasting time worrying about it, as long as I train smart and not over do it I should be all right.  What I really need to do is get a training plan wrote down on paper and start following it, or at least attempting to follow it. 

I have moved my long runs to the middle of the week.  It seems to be working pretty good so far, that way I feel like if I do a race on the weekend I can incorporate that into my schedule as speedwork and be ready to do a long run mid week again.

Is that crazy? 

I also am planning to do two long runs of 20 or above followed by a cut back week or two.  The cut back weeks I am going to try to do when I have a race coming up so that instead of doing a 22 mile long run followed three days later by a race, I will do a 12-16 mile long run and leave my legs that much more rested.

I am also going to continue to play around with refueling during long runs.

I would love any advice on anything here or anything random having to do with marathon training.  I am such a newbie at it  :)

101 days  until I do it!

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

21 is in the bag.

I decided to try and do my long runs during the week.  It seems to work out a little better that way.  I can still fit in a 5k on the weekend that way if I want to and call it speed work. 

I was supposed to work today but we weren't that busy so I got the day off.  YAY!

My sister agreed to take my kids still while I ran.  When I stepped outside this morning to get something out of my car I was greeted by great gusts of wind.  Boo.

I considered putting off my long run, but decided to be tough and just get to it.  The first couple of miles weren't too bad, but at mile 6 I turned to run into the wind.  It was blowing at 25 miles an hour and some gusts were much higher than that.  They would seem to steal the air right out of me and make it hard to breath.  I felt at times like I was not moving at all. 

I ran into the wind for 3 miles and had splits of 10:44, 10:29, and 10:48.  But the rest weren't so bad and the wind seemed to let up a little after that, and now as I am typing this it is probably half of what it was.  I ended up averaging 9:07 minutes miles, despite that three really slow ones. 

I did notice that at 19 miles I felt better than I did when I ran 19 miles last week.  Mile 21 was the really killer one this time.  I think I fueled a little smarter this time, I fueled earlier and more often and that seemed to help although by the end I was just tired and ready to be done.  5.2 miles away from a marathon! 

Crazy!  At one time I would have sworn that I would NEVER do that distance it was too far and I just was made to run that far.  Ha!  Look at me now! :)

Did I mention that I went to the Hunger Games last night? 

SO GOOD! Although as expected not nearly as good as the books and if you haven't read the books, I recommend you do so before you see the movie.  Some of it seemed a little lacking. and ugh  the way they shot the movie was crazy I got motion sickness from watching it and my older sister got a migraine.   It was crazy.  Anyone else have that problem with it?
 and this was too funny not to share, I found it on Pinterest of course.

Saturday, March 24, 2012

Some of my favorite plank exercises

Kylie over at Daily Vitamin F is having a planking party and here is my submission. I see watching these I could work on my form a little but you get the idea.

Planking is a great way to build up endurance in the abs, back and stabilizer muscles.

The first one, well really all of them can be combined with pushups to make them even more work.

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Three Things Thursday.

1. I did the Running with Spatulas virtual 10k yesterday. I diligently took a picture of my Garmin at 6.2 miles and now I can't get the photo off my phone  I am gifted like that. I ran it in 54:19.  Not my fasted ever, BUT it was all part of a bigger run.

The weather was freaking gorgeous, a perfect spring morning, temps in the mid forties when I started and slightly breezy.  I was afraid it was going to be a muddy one, but most of the roads were dried out enough to avoid major slippage and I avoided the field roads.

Since there is also a photo contest for the virtual run I made a lame attempt at a Running with Spatulas photo.  I think I could have been a bit more creative but the kids were having trouble focusing and Cola would not stand in line with us and keep a spatula in his collar, also why is the cat mooning the camera?
Yep, this is how we spatulate!

2. I then went on to run another almost 7 miles to get in the Detroit Runners "I Just Felt Like Running" virtual half marathon.  At mile 10 I stopped back at my house to change out of my Pure Flows, they were still feeling great but since the longest run I have done in them so far is 8 miles I didn't want to overdo it.  Refilled my water bottles and headed back out.

Time was really flying by as I was listening to A Game of Thrones, which is the first book in the A Song of Fire and Ice series.  SO GOOD! I have read the whole series several times and just love it more and more every time.  I think this audio book will last through a lot of long runs, it is 33 hours long!  YAY

3. From there I went on to do another 6 miles to make 19 miles.  A new personal distance record!  YAY  Although I am not going to lie, those last two miles were really hurting!  I took a GU at miles 7 and 14.  I also ate some jelly beans at random points along the way.  I am supposed to be giving up candy for lent, but I don't think fueling for a run really counts.

My pace was 8:44, which is right in the range of where I want to be, for a total time of 2:46:12.  I am going to take on 20 miles in ten days next weekend.  Then I will cut back for a week or two, then take on a 22 at some point.   I hope to have at least 3 runs greater than 20 before the marathon.  I think it will boost me mentally.  I know they say all you really need is 20, but I think I need a little more.

Also on a not so happy note, they found Sherry Arnold's body yesterday, so at least now the family can have some closure and give her a proper burial. 

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Yesterday in a nutshell

i mentioned in yesterday's post that I was starting to feel like crap.  I decided since it was so icky out and I was feeling like a major cold was coming on that I would keep my workouts inside.  I started off with a 16 minute HIIT workout that left me feeling pretty wiped and my lungs hurting.  I waited an hour and hopped on my elliptical, 5 minutes in I decided that a rest day was in order.

There are after all 110 days until the Missoula Marathon, I think I can take an unscheduled rest day.  I even took a nap in the afternoon.  The day was pretty lazy really.  I cleaned house in the morning, but by supper time the kids had all their stuff spread out again..typical.   

My daughter is getting this cold too, she spent most of the night coughing in my ear.  Restful.

I did find a fun article yesterday on 13 Simple Ways to Amp Up Your Pushup  and incorporated some of them in to my workout yesterday.  All images from

Renegade Row

Sphinx Pushup, this was really hard!

Spider Pushup, or Reptile if you are a Bodyrocker
I am feeling a little better this morning, and am off to work.  I am hoping that I get over this quickly and am back to a good run on Wednesday as planned.

Also tonight I am signing this guy up for kindergarten.  He is so excited and so ready!

Not sure why it is so hard for them to smile nice for the camera.

Have a great day everyone!

Monday, March 19, 2012

Monday Motivation

Boy I need some motivation today.  i had heard rain and snow were in the forecast and they were not kidding.  I got up to a snow covered world this morning.  :(  I know it can still snow here until June, but I just really want it to be spring and nice out.  and wear skirts running outside.  I also feel like I have a cold creeping in.  My throat feels dry and scratchy, my lungs feels like they may be trying to get congested and while I have not tried talking yet this morning, pretty sure there is a frog in there waiting to make an appearance.

Do you need some motivation too?  Well you can check out all the great race recaps around the bloggy world from this weekend.  That always motivates me. or try some of these

 I don't know that it makes me feel motivated to run or just a wuss for not wanting to run outside today.  I don't want to be cold.  I know I will warm up after the first mile if I am dressed right. which brings me to the next one

I know I shouldn't limit my running just because it snowed a little and is really nasty out there! Afterall...
 I am just feeling so over winter

I am also motivated by my race performance yesterday :)

Tell me what is motivating you today? 

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Shamrock Run 5k Race Recap

I didn't remember to take my camera so I didn't get ANY photos at the race, so I snapped a quick one of my race outfit when I got home.

I really love this skirt.
The weather felt a little cool to start with but I ran a 2.5 mile warmup and got warm so I knew I would be fine in that for the race.

I was a little nervous going into the race, I haven't raced since Thanksgiving day, which was a little while ago, so I wasn't sure how my legs would feel.  I also haven't done a lot of short race type speed work.  Mostly just a bunch of 800 intervals (I really need to branch out a little).

The gun went off and so of course did hundreds of Garmins beeping to announce they too were starting.  I love that sound for some reason.  We took off and I tried not to start to fast, but crap everyone else did, I looked down at my watch at about .20 miles in and saw I was doing 6:12 pace.  That wasn't going to work.

I slowed up a bit and reminded myself to run my own race and let everyone else run theirs.  I also reminded myself how much I love passing people who went out too fast later in the race as opposed to being the one getting passed because I went out too quick.

About that point was also the big hill which made it really easy to slow my pace a little.  I held steady around 7:10 pace after that.  I also started passing people who had started too fast around the half mile mark, man I love that.  I was feeling strong and awesome when my garmin beeped 1 mile at me. 

Mile 1 7:00 even  I felt good about this didn't seem too fast and I was feeling good

I reached the half way point and turned around (the course was an out and back) INTO THE WIND.  At this point my legs were starting to feel fatigued and it was a bit of a downer to know that I would be running into the wind all the way back.   At this point I was 5th girl.  There was a bit of a gap at this point between me and the next person up.


I hate being passed.  Means other people are maintaining or finding a new gear or I am fading out.  Or all of the above.  When I got passed by two girls, I dug deep and managed to shift gears. to a faster one, thank goodness.

I kept up with the girls, one of who GASP, was wearing a tank that was CLEARLY not for running, biking or any other sport.  neither were her shorts.  Call me a running snob or whatever but this goes in the category of being beat by kids and really old people.  You just don't think it should happen!

Mile 2 6:58 Apparently despite feeling fatigued and running into the wind, I did alright.

At that point I started trying to remember why I like to run 5ks.  They are crazy, they hurt, you are pushing so hard the whole way.

My legs wanted to quit.  I started searching for mantras to pull me through. 

"This isn't supposed to feel good"  Great because it doesn't

"You love racing"  I do? Really, cuz this hurts!

"1 mile, you can do 1 more mile"  I can do one more mile

"You are tougher than this"  I am, crap I am being a damn wuss, I am not a wuss I am one Tough Chik!

Then my hand caught on my ipod cords and pulled them out of my ears, aack, that kept me distracted enough to forget about the pain for awhile and get me back on track.

Turned down the hill to the homestretch and heard the beep at three miles, but couldn't look.  Pushed as hard as I could through to the finish even though my legs felt like they were about to fall off and cry.  I wanted to puke, I wanted to rest, but more than anything I wanted to finish under 22 minutes.  I wanted to impress myself.

Crossed the finish line in 21:47.  Third mile was 6:56.  Don't know how I pulled that off, must have been the down hill and last .13 was in 52 seconds at 6:37 pace.  I came in 6th girl I think.

I was so happy to get across the finish line and have my pace for the race be 6:57!  Woot!  I was expecting more like 7:10 and hoping for 7:00.

Race 1 for 2012 DONE!

I didn't stick around for the awards, I will just have to wait till later this week to find out.

Did I mention I love 5k races!  So brutal, so intense and such a great way to get mentally and physically tougher. 

Yay also for my Pure Flows they were amazing to run the race in.

Saturday, March 17, 2012

Racing Plans and Fun New Things

Tomorrow I have my first race of the year coming up and I am so excited and yet kind of not.  I don't feel like I have been doing the speed work for a 5k, but I didn't feel like that last year either and did pretty good.  I am excited to see where I am at with my training though.

Last year I did a lot of 5ks, 5 mile, and 10k races.  This year I still plan to do some, but due to training for a marathon (MY FIRST) on July 8th, I am cutting in the half (or more) the number of shorter races I will do this spring. 

I am signed up for a 9.3 mile on April 22 (Peaks to Prairie Adventure Race) and a 5 mile race May 12th (The Montana Womens Run and one of my all time favorite races.  Biggest race in Montana by far.  So much fun!  I am contemplating a 10k the weekend after and 5 mile race or there is one three weeks before the marathon.  I would really like to do a 10k before the marathon but not sure I like any of my choices.

There is a half marathon two weeks after the marathon I am running.  Would I be crazy to sign up for it?  It is hard to pass up since it only costs $20 for the Big Sky State Games half marathon.  Can be a hot one, but $20!? is a little hard to pass up, especially since there are only two half marathons near me and that is one of them.

Of course I also have Hood to Coast in August.... so excited for that one.  SO EXCITED! Sadly it is also the weekend of another one of my favorite races, but I think I can handle missing it for the relay of a lifetime!

I took the kids to a St Patricks day parade today.  We left after an hour and a half, we were hungry and thirsty and I was starting to think it would never ever end.  It was madness with all the kids scrambling for candy.

I did pick up a great wind/rain resistant jacket at my favorite running store Time Out Sports for over 50% off, in case it decides to rain a lot this spring.  The rain coat I already have is really heavy duty and HOT to run in.
ALSO my Mom decided to get the latest and greatest iPad and guess who got her old one  :)  I have a new obsession I think.  and now I am going to go kick my son off of it so I can play with it.
 I have the best Mom.  and I am not just saying that because she watches my kids a lot so I can run and do races, or because she spoils me sometimes.

 I really do have the best Mom :)

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Three Things Thursday

1.  The weather this week has been divine.  My attitude really needed this weather.  I was starting to get cranky pants every time I went for a run and was cold for the first mile or two.  I also finally tried out the Bibbity Running Skirt I bought before Christmas.  Bibbity skirts like RunningSkirts also have built in undies.  I was a little apprehensive about trying them because I did not have a good experience with Runningskirts. 

With RunningSkirts, the suggested size for my measurements was slightly small around the hips, perfect in the waist and the undies crawled up my butt while the skirt rode up while running. While it might make for fun viewing for my husband I just couldn't do it. I'd post a picture but this is not THAT kind of blog.

The next size up was too big around the waist, fit good around the hips, and the underwear still felt like they were trying to crawl up my butt. I also felt like there was an obvious underwear line.  :(   I got a medium in the Bibbity Skirts and it fits fabulous.  Maybe a little big in the waist, but the undies are perfect.  AND no panty line from the built in undies.  Priceless.

I am really not trying to show you my belly  here, just the waist band, and there are pockets on the sides that my phone will not bounce out of while running and gels fit in there nicely also. Sorry for the crazy hair, it was really windy out.
Okay maybe if you really stare you can see the underwear lines, but they were really obvious in the other skirt on me. ..and now you know I have a tattoo.

 and when I run my butt does not hang out.  GREAT!  I tried to get a better action shot, but the wind kept blowing my camera over.
I checked out their FB page today and ...they are having a huge clearance sale right now.  All skirts are marked down to 19.95.  Hello, order me another one! Some sizes and colors are sold out but the majority are still available. I was going to order the all black, but it is sold out :(  I think I will go with the black and white, kind of boring but it will match a lot of things.

and in case you were curious about the pockets.

2. The 10 day weather forecast looks really AWESOME!  I have a Shamrock Run 5k on Sunday that I am super excited about.  The weather should be pretty good for it.

Could the weather be any more perfect than this?  I just hope this doesn't mean we are going to have a hotter than ever summer, especially since I am running a MARATHON in JULY.

3. I also had this fun package waiting for me when I got home from my run today.  I won it in a giveaway over at Running Like a Girl

and inside..

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

That went better

Sunday I did a 15 mile long run that pretty felt like a slog fest.  The whole thing hurt.  May have had something to do with the HIIT workout I did Friday night that left my abs, glutes, and quads very sore.  By the time I went for my run Sunday I was having DOMS (delayed onset muscle soreness).  I knew it would probably hurt my long run and I was right.

By the time I got to 12 miles I considered calling my husband to come and get me, but I toughed it out and run/walked my way home.

So yesterday I was wondering if I should just take a rest day, but it was so nice out that I just couldn't resist running. How did it go?
(Total side note here, not sure if this skirt is the best for my body type, but I really love running in it :)

Cola could tell you how he felt about it, but he is too busy chewing on this yummy bone he found on the run.
Spring is on it's way, not only is the weather getting nicer out, look green grass is coming up!

I did pause at the turn around point and take in the view.
Then decided to run a negative split.  I had run a 9:15 average for the first 4.25 miles, which was also mostly uphill so I knew it would be easy to do.  I made it back with 8 min per mile average.  The last mile was a 7:22 which really hurt towards the end, but also felt really good :)

And here is Cola facing off with all the pregnant soon to be mommy cows.  He loves being around cows.

Monday, March 12, 2012

Motivation Monday: Missoula Marathon offically an entrant!

I have had marathon in the back of my mind all winter. I had always kind of had it in my head that I wouldn't do one until both the kids were in school so I could do my long runs while they were at school.

Over the winter I ran a lot thanks to a pretty mild winter.  I got in a lot of 13 and 14 mile runs, then I did a 15, then a couple weeks ago I decided to go longer, longer than I had ever gone and did 17, and then 18 miles and I started to believe that maybe I should do one sooner.

Like this spring or early summer sooner. I was really hoping to find a late May or June one.  I don't have a big travel budget so it has to be fairly close.  The best one I could find for me was the Missoula Marathon on July 8th.

The whole July thing bothers me a little, can you say HOT!  But the marathon has great reviews and is supposed to be great for first time marathoners.  It starts at 6 am, I would feel a little better if it started at 5 am, but it I guess I am not the one organizing it.

I am trying not to have to high of goals going into this, ultimately I would like to finish in under four hours and my super awesome goal is to do it in 3:40.  That is what the calculators say I should be able to do.  Although I know if it is too hot that will probably go right out the window.

There are 117 days to go.  I can do this! As someone told me : You only get one first marathon.  I am determined to enjoy it no matter what.

I would love to hear people's thoughts on getting in runs longer than 20 miles before the big day.  I  feel like I need to and or should, but have noticed a lot of training plans don't call for runs longer than 20 miles.