Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Race Recap: The San Francisco Marathon {07.29.12}

I ran my first marathon in December of 2010.  My right IT band was pulled and I was suffering from severe shin splints.  My training was very minimal and finishing that race was a big accomplishment for me because I wasn’t sure  I could do it.  In 2011 I was training to seek marathon redemption but I ended up with a stress fracture and a DNS.  Needless to say … I had high hopes for SFM. 

I (we – me, the husband, and Kat & Kelly) traveled down to SF the day before the race to go to the expo and we stayed overnight within walking distance to the race start/finish.  Race morning came quickly and after getting ready and checking out of our hotel we made our way down to the starting line area where we met up with another friend, Leo.  We were in Wave 8 and the five of us were standing in line for the port-o-potties right under the Bay Bridge as our starting time approached.  Once everyone had the chance to use the facilities we jogged our way up to the starting line and off we went. 


The first couple of miles were flat and our race strategy was to “bank” some time during the first 5 miles (before getting on to The Golden Gate Bridge).  It was very crowded as we ran along the Embarcadero.  The first HILL is at mile 2.5 and I powered up it pumping my arms and staying on my toes and felt GREAT.  Around mile 3 Kat pulled off to use the restroom and told us to go ahead and that she’d catch up.  This worried me, big time.  But we trekked onward.  For the next several miles I was constantly checking behind me to see if Kat was approaching and contemplating stopping, or going back, to find her.  The views, oh the views, were amazing – even in the fog.  I couldn’t wait to run across The Golden Gate.  THANKFULLY, Kat caught up to us before we were even half way across the bridge.  Let me just say, running across The Golden Gate was AMAZING.  A-MAZ-ING. 

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Once we got across the bridge, Kelly pulled off to use the restroom as the rest of us continued back across the bridge.  Coming off the bridge you get to go downhill (yes) then UP (of course) and then DOWN, DOWN, DOWN a long steep hill along the coast.  Gorgeous views.  Hellish hill.  I FLEW down this hill (most of the way) which I’m now sure caused a large majority of my post race back pain (that is STILL lingering). 

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Around mile 10 the husband pulled off to use the bathroom.  Three of us (me, Leo, Kat) kept going.  We entered an area with a series of uphill's with some flat sections (intersections) before entering Golden Gate Park (around the halfway point).  Right before entering the park the first half marathoners split from the full marathoners.  I knew this was my chance to pull off for a bathroom break since it wouldn’t be as crowded and I was right … right after the split there was a row of restrooms with NO LINES.  I stopped, Leo continued on, and Kat stopped too (though I didn’t know that at the time).  Once I exited the bathroom and started running again I saw the husband & Kelly up ahead.  I picked up the pace (thankfully it was a downhill portion) to catch them.  Once I caught up we fell into a groove and worked to catch Leo (once we caught him is when I discovered Kat stopped at the same restrooms I did).  Eventually we all were together again. 

Running through Golden Gate Park was BEAUTIFUL.  It was still foggy, and misty, and AMAZING.  We all stuck together, for the most part, all the way through the park.  People would surge ahead, or walk hills, or fall behind … but we all ended up catching each other over and over again.  (I just realized  didn’t take any photos while we were running through the park.  Fail.)  Around mile 18 I started to have some stomach distress and I thought I was going to puke.  In fact, I really tried to because I figured I would feel better if I did, but it didn’t happen.  There was a lot of walking and I was starting to get tired.  I ran the first half of the race HARD and the fatigue was catching up with me. 

We exited the park around mile 20 and started the steep downhill section back towards the bay.  Though it wasn’t all downhill.  This section KILLED me.  I was already fatigued, my stomach was doing flip flops and I didn’t want any fuel, my back was killing me, and I just wanted to walk.  And walking is what I did.  A lot of it.  I’d walk until the 5:15 pacer would catch up, then I’d run again.  My Garmin had died before even the half way point so I was relying on the husband to tell me our overall time and our current pace.  I know I was walking slow and when I’d run I felt like I was moving at a snail pace … and then the husband would yell out that we were running a 10:00 pace.  I was out of it.  Everyone split up during this section and ran their own races at the paces that were best for them at this point in the race.  Kat surged ahead and we lost her for a while at a “traffic” break.  Leo fell behind and we lost him at another “traffic” break.  Kelly was somewhere between Kat and me and the husband.  We caught her for a while but she went ahead.  The last few miles are a blur for me.  I was so done.  I ran when I could and walked when I couldn’t.  I was so tired.  I am so, so, so thankful that I had Jon by my side otherwise I’m sure I would have walked the last few miles.  I really pushed and gave it all I had … I just didn’t have any left to give.  Once we came around the back side of AT&T Ballpark I knew we were FINALLY almost there.  With the finish line in sight, and while holding my husband’s hand, I crossed the finish line in 5:14:34!

The San Francisco Marathon is amazing. And its a wonderful way to see the city. I definitely recommend running it … but be warned, it’s no “walk in the park”.  It’s hilly and it’s hard.  I want to run both the half’s though I doubt I would run the full again.


Monday, August 27, 2012

Meal Plan Monday + Plan for the Week {Aug 27}

I am going to start this Monday morning off by tooting my own horn … I successfully stuck to my Meal Plan last week, didn’t eat out once, lost a few pounds, and FELT GREAT.  Here’s to more of the same this week.

I did end up having a little indulgence over the weekend after our very sweet and amazing friend made some super yummy homemade chocolate cupcakes for the husband’s belated birthday.  They were so good.  I had one after our long run on Saturday morning (it was so good with coffee) and TWO yesterday (one after lunch, one after dinner).  Thankfully, even though they were amazing, they are all gone (no more temptation in the house).

We went to the farmers market yesterday morning and stocked up on all sorts of fruit and veggies for the week.  I’m looking forward to trying Brussels Sprouts for the first time (I’m going to shred them and sauté them in with our stir-fry).  It’s going to be a very busy week so I’m happy to have my meal plan and workout plan all set to help keep me accountable.  I purchased a kettle bell over the weekend and I’m looking forward to getting back to some strength training this week as I learn to incorporate it back into my training plan.  We’ve got a 5k this weekend (a local fun run) and I’m looking forward to it … and I’m looking forward to not racing it.  Racing 5ks are hard.  I’m over that.  Maybe.  (At least that is what I say now … )

What are you looking forward to this week?  Need and/or want to toot your own horn? 


Monday ~ Chicken and Mushrooms in a Garlic White Wine Sauce
Tuesday ~ Tofu Tacos 
Wednesday ~ Vegetable Stir-fry over Grilled Polenta Rounds
Thursday ~ Bakes Shrimp with Eggplant and Feta
Friday ~ Pasta with semi-homemade marinara sauce
Saturday ~ Leftover pasta
Sunday ~ Turkey Meatloaf

What’s on your menu this week?
Do you meal plan?
Got a favorite recipe that I’ve got to try? Please share :)
Don’t forget to check out the links … you never know what you might discover! There are some GREAT food blogs & recipe websites out there :)

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

Plan for the Week

Monday ~ Run 2-3 miles + strength + walk
Tuesday ~ AM = Run 30min; PM = speed work (800s)
Wednesday ~ AM = Cross train @ gym + strength ; PM = walk (Wednesday Night Community Walk Club with The Running Zone)
Thursday ~ Run 3-4 miles + walk
Friday ~ Cross train @ gym + strength + walk
Saturday ~ Run 14 miles
Sunday ~ Run 5k

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

Weigh-in {08.20.12} = 140.8
Loss/Gain from previous week = –5.4
*Back to tracking with
WW on 08.20.12

Monday, August 20, 2012

Meal Plan Monday + Plan for the Week {Aug 20}

I’m declaring this Monday a fresh start with the return of Meal Plan Monday to the blog.  I’m also going to include my workout plan for the week and my weekly weigh-in.  I’ve reactivated my WW account and I’m back to tracking starting this week. 

Monday ~ Sloppy Jose Supper 
Tuesday ~ leftovers
Wednesday ~ Lentil Tacos 
Thursday ~ leftovers
Friday ~ Spaghetti SQUASH with semi-homemade marinara sauce 
Saturday ~ Turkey Burgers
Sunday ~ leftovers

What’s on your menu this week?
Do you meal plan?
Got a favorite recipe that I’ve got to try? Please share :)
Don’t forget to check out the links … you never know what you might discover! There are some GREAT food blogs & recipe websites out there :)

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

Plan for the Week

Monday ~ AM = cross train @ the gym (first trip to the gym in MONTHS); PM = walk
Tuesday ~ AM = 30 min run; PM = speed work (contingent on my how my back is feeling)
Wednesday ~ AM: cross train @ gym; PM = walk (Wednesday Night Community Walk Club with The Running Zone)
Thursday ~ run 3-4 miles
Friday ~ run 4 miles
Saturday ~ run 10-12 miles
Sunday ~ walk

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

Weigh-in {08.20.12} = 146.2
*Back to tracking with WW

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Summertime and the livin's easy

Your eyes are not deceiving you … I am actually posting a blog post!  Never mind my unplanned & extended absence from the blog … let’s just skip right to the good stuff.  Where I’ve been, what I’ve been doing, and what I’m looking forward to!


I met Dean Karnazes at the Big Sur Marathon expo (in April). 


I ran the 10.6 mile race at Big Sur (April) with an official time of 2:05:48.2 1

I ran the Avenue of the Vines Half Marathon (in May) with an official time of 2:34: - 1
05.21.12 -2

I ran the last half of the AR50 course (from Granite Bay to Auburn)
as a “training run” and an ADVENTURE (June).

I ran the Run 4 Independence 10k (June) and finished in sub 1 hour
with an official time of 59:22 for a NEW 10k PR.

I was at the finish line of the Vineman Ironman 70.3 to see our good friend finish (July).


I ran the San Francisco Marathon (July)
and finished with a 37 minute PR … official time 5:14:34!

The HUSBAND ran his first 50k on his BIRTHDAY (August 12th)
the Skyline 50k, with an official time of 6:04:41!!!

It’s been a fun and busy summer.  And I’ve got a lot more fun and exciting things coming up in the fall.  Training for CIM has started … and I’m running not one, not two, but THREE half marathons in October.

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

When you are enjoying life, time flies

I took a little blog vacation.  I haven’t posted a single thing since May.  I haven’t written a single word with the intention of posting. 

I’ve been enjoying life.  Working hard.  Running long.  Running fast.  Making memories.  Enjoying friends. 

I’ve got some very old recaps I want to post to cherish the memories including anniversary celebrations, race recaps, race plans, and more adventures in running long.

In the meantime … I’ll be around.  Catch you on the flipside!

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Training Tuesday

Last week my left shin was bothering me.  In fact it was so bothersome during my hill repeats last Tuesday that I took an ice bath when I got home.


It’s feeling much better now and didn’t give me much grief after that icing session on Tuesday.  But, I still had a pretty blah running week.  My legs felt tired all week, often like they were encased in bags of cement.  Luckily I was feeling better by the end of the week but I was still sluggish during my half marathon race on Sunday.

Last week:


Even though I was having an “off” week, I still completed each of my planned runs.  Cross training has gone by the way side, temporarily, since my shin was acting up. 

Our “hill” for hill repeats

Tuesday = hill repeats.  They are not getting easier; do they ever?  Wednesday = easy run with my buddy Kat.  Friday = tempo run with the husband in the early pre-dawn hours (3 tempo miles = 10:26, 10:27, 9:59).  Saturday = pre-race shake out 5k run with my buddy Kat (10:24 avg) and post run coffee.  Sunday = Avenue of the Vines Half Marathon!  This was my 6th half marathon.

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Once I finish my Big Sur Weekend recap then I’ll post a race recap from the half marathon last week.  It was a good race, though I’m not sure I would run it again.  Official finishing time = 2:34:31. 

This week is much of the same.  Though this weekend the husband and I will be running trails in my hometown.  We are both looking forward to it. 

10 weeks till SFM.

Monday, May 21, 2012

Meal Plan Monday {May 21}

Good morning internets.  I hope everyone had a great weekend.  Yesterday I ran my 6th half marathon, finishing in 2:34 alongside my running buddy Kat and the husband.  I also spent the weekend continuing to #eatallthethings (as Heather would say) in the extremist way possible.  Lately I’ve discovered that I’m being less and less mindful of the food I’m putting in my body and I’m binging on food that is not necessarily the healthiest or the best fuel for my body or my running lifestyle.  The first step is accepting there is a problem … right?!? 

Today is the husband’s last day of instruction and tomorrow his summer vacation begins.  Though once I show him the honey-do list I have for him I’m not sure he’ll be calling it “vacation”.  This weekend is Memorial Day Weekend and I’m looking forward to the long weekend.

Monday ~ Spinach & Feta Pasta 

Tuesday ~ Chicken & Rice Bowls with Corn-on-the-cob

Wednesday ~ Tofu Tacos

Thursday ~ Sloppy Jose Supper on kaiser rolls

Friday-Sunday ~ Memorial Day Weekend

What’s on your menu this week?
Do you meal plan?
Got a favorite recipe that I’ve got to try? Please share :)
Don’t forget to check out the links … you never know what you might discover! There are some GREAT food blogs & recipe websites out there :)

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

Weigh in {05.21.12} = 140.4
Loss/Gain from previous week = +1.04

Friday, May 18, 2012

Thankful – Wk20

It’s all the little every day things that make life so extraordinary and this year I want to make sure I am appreciating and focusing more on them. In an effort to remember to slow down, let the little things go, and enjoy every moment of this life I am going to share what I’ve been thankful for each week.

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This week I’m thankful for …

  • Acts of unconditional love
  • Friendships
  • Spending time with family
  • Inspirational quotes
  • Mid-week runs with my buddy Kat
  • Lucy is okay after getting attacked on Wednesday
  • That the weekend is here!

What makes you feel thankful today?

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Three Things Thursday

1.  The husband was taking our dog, Lucy, for a walk last night and a loose dog attacked Lucy and bit her!  She is OK with a few shallow wounds and some scratches.  The husband said he did everything he could to get the dog away from Lucy including trying to sprint away from it but the other dog caught up to them.  Eventually the husband started yelling for help and someone came to help from a nearby house and they finally got away.  He doesn’t know where the other dog came from exactly, only the general vicinity.  Thankfully Lucy’s wounds are not worse and the husband didn’t get injured at all.  We are treating Lucy at home and watching the wounds for infection.  So scary.

2.  In other news … my left shin has been feeling twinge-y lately.  Boo.  Last night it was aching after my run so I got out my trusty 5 gallon bucket and did an ice bath.  It’s feeling better and I’m hoping it stays that way.  I think all the jumping around while doing the 30 Day Shred videos last week aggravated it.  I’ll be having none of that so no more 30 Day Shred for me.  I’ll have to find a different alternative for some cross training at home.

3.  I just registered me and the husband for a trail half marathon in October.  This is one of two half marathons that we are doing back-to-back on my birthday weekend with our running friends.  Friday I’ll be turning 32, Saturday we’ll run 13.1 on trails in Napa, and Sunday we’ll run another 13.1 on the bike path in Folsom.  I’m so excited.  It’s going to be a lot of fun.  Bonus – we’ll qualify for Half Fanatics :)


How about some fun stats:
05.17.12 lifetime stats
I love this feature on Daily Mile.  Since I started tracking my activities in January 2010 I’ve burned over 1200 donuts.  Booyah! 


Do you use Daily Mile?  If so, how many donuts have you burned? 

Anyone a Half Fanatic?

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Training Tuesday

Another week of SFM training complete!  And what a great (running) week it was.

11 weeks to go!

Last week:

I nailed all my workouts last week, including two “cross training” workouts (Monday & Thursday).  I did Level 1 of the 30 Day Shred on Monday and Level 2 on Thursday.  Tuesday was hill repeats.  The temps have started to rise and it was warm out which made this workout even harder.  Wednesday was my new 4.55 mile loop from my house to the park and back.  My buddy Kat joined me and we had a good run, even though it was warm again.  We've got an unspoken ability to push each other just when we need it.  Friday was a 5 mile tempo run with the husband.  It was warm, again, but we got ‘er done.  I love our Friday runs together, just the two of us, where we get to talk about our week and pound out any leftover work stress from the week :)

map 05.12.12
Long Run Map (from my Garmin)

“Mountain Lion Running Club”

Saturday’s long run was a little different than we’ve been doing.  I planned out a point-to-point run for us to do.  We were up early and dropped one car off at the end of our route and then drove back down to where we planned to start.  We did 16 miles, starting at Sacramento State University (my alma matar) and ran on the American River Bike Trail all the way to Nimbus Dam on Hazel Avenue.  The bike trail has some rolling hills, though nothing like the hills we usually run in Folsom.  It’s mostly shaded but we did have a few stretches where we were in the direct sun for a while.  We started early (just after 6 a.m.) and beat the heat but it was still warm out and the sun left me drained for the rest of the day.  We drove up to my hometown on Saturday night (to spend Mother’s Day with my mom) so I did a recovery run on Sunday morning around the neighborhood I grew up in.  I ended up over at my high school so I ran a mile around the track there. 


This week will be a bit of a step back week.  I’m running a half marathon on Sunday (#6).  The week didn’t start off too great … I already skipped a workout (cross training on Monday) but after a long weekend and some insomnia I was exhausted and opted to sleep in instead.  I’m looking forward to the race on Sunday --- I’ll be running with the husband and my running buddy Kat.  We plan to keep the pace easy like a training run and have fun.  The race starts & ends at a local winery that we love so I think we are going to have a lot of fun :)