Friday, May 18, 2012

Reality & Track

Reality is ... I have been running.  But, I've also been working non stop and just trying to figure out this whole balance thing.  It's tough being a wife, runner, and full time employee - right!?

Reality is ... I owe you several race reports.  I want to write them, too because I enjoyed so very much reading my race reports before I ran these races.  It's really nice to be able to look at your training cycle from a previous race and learn from your recaps.

So, here's to catching up!  I'm on the right track.  For the past 5 months, I've been using only my ipad for internet reading - which, has been more than okay.  I love my ipad, but it's a little hard to type long sentences on.

On April 28th, I ran another half marathon: The Kentucky Derby Mini Marathon in Louisville, KY.  I did well for how I've been training and ran a 1:37:52.  More on that later.

More importantly, I've been training for the San Diego Half Marathon on June 3rd.  I'm hoping to be closer to the 1:35 mark - so, we shall see.

I hadn't really been doing a lot of speedwork since my move to Louisville.  The group of girls that I've been running with have been a little faster, forcing my workouts and easier runs to be well ... faster.  But, other than that, no track :(  We all know that my favorite workouts have always been on the track.  It's so just unbelievably difficult to go to the track by yourself..

Well, I've been successful lately.  Before the Derby half, I went to the track twice with my friend Kelly.  We did fun workouts - 12 x 400m one time and 300m with 1.5 mile tempos in between the other time.

The last two weeks I went to the track with my friend, Melissa.  We snuck into a local high school track at 5AM.  Two weeks ago, we ran the 400m workout again and I averaged 1:28.  I was so freakin' excited!

Then, this past Tuesday, we ran a super long track workout: 800m 1600m 2400m 1600m 800m.  In short, the pace was supposed to be same for all splits: 6:50 pace and the rest in between wsas half of the time you ran.

My splits:

800m: 3:24 (right on pace - felt good)
1600m: 6:44
2400m: 10:08 --> Actually felt good.  The goal was 10:15, so I knew I'd be able to finish the rest of the workout strong.
1600m: 6:31
800m: 3:08

I'll post some pics soon! :)  Leave me some comments and welcome me back :)

XOXO
Jaime

Thursday, March 29, 2012

Races Races Races

I have been such the blogging slacker. I've been keeping up with all of my favorite reads, but haven't been commenting or posting myself. The worst part about it all - I need to write 3 race recaps!!

So, be on the look out very shortly for three race recaps:

Clearwater Half Marathon: 1:42:07

Gasparilla Half Marathon: 1:38:43

Rodes 10K: 43:57


XOXO

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Clearwater Half - Quick Update

Clearwater kicked my butt!! I have a couple of rationales as to why ... which I will post about soon. But, in the meantime, I wanted to leave you with a quick update and some pictures.

1:42:07 - 6 minutes SLOWER than last year

5th age group
17th overall female

It was a small race - only about 1100 runners total between the Half Marathon and 5 miler.


Penny and I before the race. See that bridge in the background?! We ran up it 4 times.


Proof that my hair doesn't like the FL humidity. I had forgotton what that was like.





Mustering up any energy that I had left to finish strong. Last .17 in 6:06 pace :)




Medals :)

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Bliss

Sometimes, everything falls together perfectly. Last Saturday, I had planned to meet up with a group of girls at 7:30AM. Instead, I gave into a late Friday night dinner with my husband that included sushi and a few glasses of wine. I still set my alarm for 6:30AM, but the entire week had caught up on me and I didn't even hit snooze for 5 more minutes. I turned it off . I woke up on my own around 8:15AM and just didn't want to run. One thing turned into another (breakfast, trip to Lowes, Starbucks, etc.) and before I knew it, it was almost 2PM.

I decided it was time to run and that I was going to try to run hills - afterall, I have a half marathon exactly two weeks later. I drive to Seneca and decide that I'll run the Seneca to Cherokee 8 mile loop and then add on as necessary. It's pretty hilly.

I started running and felt good. The sky was blue and the sun was shining. I gradually kept picking up the pace a little until I settled in to an 8:15ish pace. I maintained up the hills and felt strong. I couldn't stop smiling.

I got to the half way point of the loop and decided that I would add on some miles there (an out and back). This continued to be hilly and I just wanted to keep running out. I ran all the way to the University of Louisville before turning around. Continuous rolling hills.

I haven't felt that good in a while. Everything seemed to be perfect. Maybe it was the sunshine, maybe it was just my day. But, I'll take it again.

13.1 miles - 1:48:28

There wa a time when I couldn't have dreamt of racing a 1:48, let alone running it on an easy long run.

Next up Clearwater Half. :)

Thursday, January 5, 2012

A Step in my Own Shoes

With January 22nd right around the corner and knowing how my training has been - good, but not great - I decided to take a step in my own shoes this month.

What does that mean?

I printed out my training log from January 2011 and decided that at minimum, I will do exactly what I did last year. I ran well at Clearwater, so I'm hoping that this provides similiar results. I'm not naive enough to think that it will, but I feel like I have a good base and just needed a little direction. I was running really well last year at this point and I think if I can hit the same mileage and simliar paces, it may just give me the confidence that I need.

Monday - 2011: 2 miles easy, 2 tempo, 2 easy (Middle 2 were in 14:28) - Easy avg. pace 8:53
Monday - 2012: 2 miles easy, 2 tempo, 2 easy (Middle 2 in 14:33) - Easy avg. pace 8:32

Tuesday - 2011: 7 miles easy - 59:07
Tuesday - 2011: 7 miles easy --> I had dinner obligations and wanted to be done: 54:43

Next up, mile repeats . . . 2011 (6:41, 6:37, 6:41) I'm not so sure that I'm going to beat that one.

Sunday, January 1, 2012

New Year!

I've had a very eventful 2011. I didn't quite hit all of my running goals for 2011, but I did have a very productive year. I ran some great races, got married, moved to Louisville KY and took on a new position with the company that I've been with for the past 4 1/2 years. This year has definitely had it's ups and downs - the move hit me pretty hard, but overall, it was a year to remember.

As we begin 2012, I feel very blessed. I have a husband that I love very much, a job that I enjoy and that gives me great opportunity and running. I survived 2011 injury free and still whole heartedly love to run. I still want to PR. I still believe I'm capable of running faster. I still want to train harder so that I can race and see what I am actually made of. But, I think I've finally found a balance in my running and life that I've missed for a while.

I ran almost 1200 miles in 2011 which doesn't come close to the 1600+ miles I ran in 2010. But, I'll take it. I even finished the year yesterday afternoon with a treadmill 10 miler in 1:18:56. I was at exactly 25:00 at mile 3 and decided to keep picking up the pace until mile 10. I ran the last 7 in 53:56. My ipod died at 28 minutes and I was too stubborn to walk upstairs to get David's ipod that I ran the next 50 minutes without music. :)

So, so long 2011 and cheers to 2012. Next race up: Clearwater Half Marathon on Jan. 23rd. I can only hope it goes as well as it did last year.

XOXO

Friday, November 11, 2011

New York City Marathon: Race Report

I'm sure you've all noticed that I haven't really been around that much lately. It's not for my lack of running or lack of passion for the sport. Ever since we moved to Louisville, I've been slammed. I took a new position with the company, in a new department, and things have kind of been crazy. Good crazy. But, crazy nonetheless. Let's just say that there have been some 12-13 hour workdays each week. I love the new job, but I love running more. I've kept running, but my mileage has suffered.

In August, I ran one 15 miler. Since then, my longest run has been a 10 miler - and to be quite honest, I probably only did that every other weekend. During the week, I'd run 3-4 times - 5-7 milers. I stopped doing speed work, but kept up my pace. My average pace on all of my runs was between 7:45-8:15.

I could tell I was getting stronger and still running well ... But, with a long run of only 10 miles, I wasn't so sure how my body would handle the full marathon. I thought that I could probably pull off a decent half, but I wasn't so sure about a full. In fact, I was kind of concerned about even attempting the full.

But, I did it. I planned the trip and was so excited to see Penny! I analyzed past blogs and training cycles and realized that I am SUCH a better runner now in so many ways, but that I just didn't have the distance. So, with 9 days to go, I decided to convince myself that I was superwoman. Yes, superwoman! :)

Since I opted to go on vacation and only run a 5 miler as my long run 3 weeks before the race and then with 2 weeks to go decided to race a 4K (FUN - 2nd overall female), I decided with one week to go that I should run 10 miles again. I had convinced myself that I was running the NYC marathon no matter the pain. I was good through 10 miles - so, I thought worse case I'd be struggling through the second half.

Goal - have fun! Try to run the entire time. Use this run to get back in shape :)

The time before the race flew by. I had so much time chatting and hanging with Penny and Keri that I really kind of forgot that we were running a marathon. On the outside, I was reminding everyone of the training that I hadn't done. But, on the inside, I was convincing myself that I had been training for 4 years (which I have been running regularly for 4 years now) for the race and that the past 12 weeks didn't offset that!

We jumped up and down, sang outloud and smiled a lot. Before we knew it, the race started.

The first mile was a little insane. Technically, I walked during the first quarter mile of this race. We couldn't go. There were so many people. Penny and I managed to stay together and crank out a 9:09. Once we got to the top of the bridge and started going down, I could tell Penny was in a lot of pain. My body was wanting to go; however, I was scared. It was early on and I didn't know how my body would handle everything. We ran a 8:14 for mile 2.

Coming off the bridge was nice. Brooklyn was sunny and welcoming. I had already tossed my arm warmers - which means that it really was hot because I wouldn't just part with those bad boys!!

I decided early on that I needed to take care of my body - as in an over the top kind of way! I was asking a lot out of it and I needed to fuel early and often. So, that's exactly what I did. They had gatorade and water stops every mile from mile marker 3-24. I took gatorade or water, but mostly just gatorade at every.single.stop!! I ran through them all and it slowed me down some, but I drank it! :) I also gelled every 4 miles. In the past, I've only gelled every 7 miles.

I ran through the 5K time at 26:45. I had lost Penny right around this time. I kept trying to look back. I was praying for her and her foot ...

My pace hovered around the 8:15ish mark for a while. I was just taking it all in. I was trying to be cautious and just enjoy myself. I was very anxious for what was to come and just so happy to be running the NYC Marathon!!

10K time - 52:21

15K time - 1:18:15

From mile 9-10, I decided to high five every single kid. It made me smile even more. I was feeling good and just kept talking to myself. Literally at least 20 times per mile I would keep repeating "You are so strong. You're determined, Jaime. You're stubborn. Today is your day and no one is taking it away from you! Strong!! Believe!! You are so passionate about running. You've worked 4 years for today -you've got this. Then, I would repeat "I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me." This was seriously on constant repeat all day!!



I remember hitting mile 10 at 1:23:xx and being elated. I kept getting faster and kept feeling better!! I think this is about the time that the song cheers for the freakin' weekend song came on. That made me smile :)

I kept cruising through Brooklyn and as I knew that the half way point would come on the Brooklyn bridge. I hit the half way point, still feeling good, in 1:48:58.


It's funny. This was my sixth marathon. #3, #4 and #5 all had a goal of sub 3:40. This is the first time I came through the half way point ahead of that 1:50 goal - and I wasn't even stressing over time. I still didn't let myself think ahead .. I was just being strong and running in the moment. I started letting myself go here. I'd think ahead to the next gel or think it 2 mile increments. Like, if you can make it two more miles, then you only have 11 left. You can do anything for 11 miles. You know, that kind of talk.



I hit 15 - still feeling great.



25K - 2:13:04



I hit 16 - still feeling great despite the two mile bridge into Manhattan. Funny enough, I rememebered every single step of this race from 2009 - except that bridge. I remember that bridge not being so bad. It was long and hilly and kind of rough. But, I pushed and knew wait awaited me .. Manhattan! I can't even describe this moment. There have got to be very few moments in life that top coming off of that bridge and into Manhattan. I took out my ipod and listened to the crowd and to "New York" play so loudly.



I started picking up the pace. I don't have my garmin on me now, but the next 5 miles were all between 7:44 and 8:05.



This was the first time I started looking ahead, too. I figured that even if I crashed, I wouldn't stop and so worse case that mean 10 minute miles. My predicition at mile 16 (with 10 ten minute miles): 3:53. Knowing I had run a 3:56 in 2009, I was elated .. and that probably pushed me even more.



At 18, I predicted again.



30K - 2:42:08





19 and 20 were great. 20 is a huge milestone. I continued to count down the time until I'd finish each time predicitng a little quicker. I'd start to wonder when I was going to completely crash knowing that it could happen any second but tried really hard not to let my mind go there.




Around 22, I saw Keri and her dad. Keri was very encouraging as I ran past them. I kept going ... until Mile 23. At 23, the wall came. I felt like I was crawling I was running so slow. But, I was determined to keep running and not give up. I knew it was 5K left. Everytime I looked at my Garmin, I was somehow mustering a 9:10-9:15 pace. I was content with that to say the least. 23 and 24 were happy miles. We were in Central Park and approaching the finish line. But, 23 and 24 were long miles, too. I knew once I reached 25, I could do it! One mile ... yes! :)




I tried picking up the pace a little at 25. In NYC, this actually is possible. The crowds are unbelieveable at this point that you can't help but smile and pick up the pace. I just love finishing the NYC Marathon and I'd dreamt of running this last mile again ever since I finished in 2009. There are few moments in life that will top that feeling!! The signs continued to count down and I just tried passing people :) 1/2 mile ... 400m ... 300m ... 200m ... 100m ... Finished!






I crossed the finish line completely spent with the largest smile on my face. I stopped my watch.




26.45 miles 3:41:08



I realized around mile 17 that I had lost almost 2 1/2 minutes of signal on the bridge into Manhattan. So, I'd say since my time was 3:43:36 - I probably ran a good 26.8 miles.





Official time: 26.2 miles: 3:43:36

Passion. Stubbornness. Determination. Belief. Call it whatever you want, but it was my day :)