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Thursday, October 31, 2013

Not in Training

I'm having the hugest internal battle right now.  Part of me wants to get right back at it and part of me keeps hearing the words of the orthopedic in my head, "Take it easy for a couple weeks, then come see me."  Well, what is easy?  I worked out three times last week.  One weight lifting session, one yoga class and one run.  This week I've only been to the gym once so far.  I went yesterday and did the elliptical for a half and hour and then did three sets of pull ups.  I feel like a slug!  I want to take it easy, but it's really hard.  I know my body could use a little bit of a break.  But how much is too much?  What's the right "easy" amount of running?  This week is busy because of all the school activities for my kids, so it's a bit easy to slack.  Unfortunately, the candy is flowing and I'm not being the best ever.  I feel justified one minute, then guilty the next.  I suppose I'll just have to find the right balance.  Wish me luck!

Happy Halloween!

Sunday, October 27, 2013

Back at it

Today I met up with Michelle in Millcreek Canyon and we ran the pipeline trail.  I couldn't find my Garmin in the dark, so I just decided to leave it be.  It was odd to run without it, but there is no reason for me to know how far we went.  We ran for nearly two hours on this beautiful fall day.  I felt good, but can feel little tweaks in my feet, knees and hips.  I took it nice and easy today.  It felt good to move. I think we ran around 8.5-9 miles.
I went this week and got myself some new trail shoes.  I decided to try something with a wider toe box.  These are La Sportiva Helios and were super comfy.  They also have a bit more of a toe bumper, so I was happy that it didn't hurt at all when I kicked a rock!  I think they're winners!
The forecast calls for cooler weather and rain this week, so I was happy to get out on this beautiful, clear day!

Saturday, October 26, 2013

Finish Line Photos

I just found these photos from the Antelope Island 50k finish that Jeff had taken on his phone!  

I love this one.  Look at the happiness on the girls faces!

Notice Lila and Kurtis are still running along side me.  Lila is like a gazelle when she runs!  
I love these!  What a fantastic memory!!!

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Training Totals

1 38.12
2 35.14
3 35.44
4 37.42
5 34.2
6 28.28
7 41.28
8 28.53
9 35.86
10 39.2
11 37.27
12 43
13 35.15
14 4.02
15 3.82
16 32.64 (Race week, including race mileage)

Sixteen weeks of training, for a grand total of 509.37 miles since June 30, 2013.
Average=31.8 miles/week, 127.3 miles/month.

Welcome Back, Workout

I have been feeling really great the past couple days, so I decided it was time to get back on the horse.   I will still take a few more days off from running, just to give my body a fair chance at recovery.  Since I'm planning on adding more weight lifting to my weekly routine, I'm planning on doing less full body lifting and do some area specific training throughout the rest of fall and winter.   Today was back and biceps day.  It felt great and arms are all shaky and hard to lift now, so I think I did a good job.  I also tried out the Versa Gripps Jeff got me and I love them!  They help you grip onto heavy weights so that you can lift entirely with your muscles and your grip strength is taken out of the equation.  Very handy!

Today's routine:
Dead lifts
Seated lat pull downs
Seated close grip rows
Bent over dumbbell rows
Bicep curl with barbell

Thank you, Jeff!

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Pictures are my Favorite!

A gal by the name of Lori Burlison was out on Antelope Island on Saturday taking some fantastic pictures that she was kind enough to share with us runners.  I know of Lori, but I don't know Lori.  Regardless, she took some beautiful pictures and I'm thankful.  Check out her whole album here.

Here I am climbing, climbing, climbing with the Great Salt Lake as my backdrop.  

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Revisiting Goals

In April I made myself some goals for this year.  It's been about six months since I sat down and wrote out my goals and I thought now would be a good time to revisit those goals and see how I'm doing.  Here they are:

1. Stay injury free 
Number one is probably the trickiest of all those goals.  I've done fairly well, and since I completed my big race for the year and am feeling fantastic I'll say I managed that one, albeit by the skin of my teeth.

2. Cross train twice a week
I've actually done much much better at this one than I had previously!  Weight lifting and yoga have made their way into my weekly routine and I'm loving them both.

3. Get to 130lbs (was weighing between 135.5-138)
This one is probably the simplest goal (notice I said simple, not easy!)  I am now hovering between 132-135, so I'm certainly getting there!

4. Do hills
Bam!  Done!  I am feeling like a much better uphill runner these days!  Antelope Island 50k proved to me that my hard work is paying off.  I was able to run much more uphill than I used to be able to!

5. Do speed work
FAIL!  Yeah.  I have done about zero speed work.  The year isn't over yet, right?

6. Enjoy running
This goal is my favorite and I have to say with 100% certainly it has been achieved!  I have loved running more and more this year!  Just check out the geeky smile on my face in all my running pictures.  Yeah.  I'm loving it!

Overall, I'm very pleased with myself and the progress I've made so far this year.  Now, I guess I'd better start thinking about speed work...

Two days before race day.  Lean, mean running machine!


I told my husband I was going to go for a walk today and he laughed at me.  True, I'm not much of a walker.  I've always found walking boring.  However, there is a time and place for a nice walk, and today was that time.  After two days of sore muscles, I woke up today finally feeling back to normal.  Katherine kindly agreed to go for a walk with me, so we headed to Dimple Dell gully.  It was cold and pretty and felt nice to stretch my legs.  We walked for an hour, which felt great!  Plus I got to share all the details of my race with my number one running buddy!  I'm still feeling very happy from with my race day performance and ready for a bit of rest and maybe a few weekends of sleeping in!  

Sunday, October 20, 2013

Antelope Island 50k

My second 50k was officially a smashing success!  Not only did I get the hugest PR (personal record) ever, I enjoyed the whole race and felt fantastic afterwards!  

I woke about a half an hour before my alarm yesterday.  I tried to go back to sleep, but it was no use so I got up and started getting ready.  I was feeling excited, but not nervous.  My mom was up and wished me luck as I headed off to the island.  The morning was cold, but not bitter.  It was going to be the perfect weather day, 58ยบ and sunny.  

I had been worried about my monthly coming, and in fact she did rear her ugly head that morning.  Fortunately, not in full force and I was able to run my race with zero potty stops.  I did, however, stop at Walmart for a potty stop right before heading onto the island, which turned out to be a great idea because the race porta potty line was rather long!  

At the race start I ran into my friend Laurie, and some other folks I know from the running community.  The start of the race was a riot.  Jim Skaggs, the race director called us all over and drew a in in the dirt with his foot and teased us about crossing his timing mat!  Just after 8am we were on our way.  There were just over 100 of us.  I was quickly toward the back of the pack and just enjoyed being comfortable in my pace.  I was actually feeling really strong and able to run much more of the first uphill section than I have been able to before.  The beginning of the race was uneventful.  It was chilly and I was feeling happy to run.  I had no problems and enjoyed the familiar White Rock loop out to Elephant Head aid station.  

I only stopped at the aid station long enough to shed a layer.  After the aid station is a lovely downhill.  Then, the switchbacks of death.  The last time I ran (or death marched) up these switchbacks I was in a bad place.  I was ready to have my revenge on these bad boys!  I alternated running and walking up them, and feeling happy that they weren't kicking my ass!  Luckily, the climb ended much sooner in this race, as we headed over the saddle and down to the south side of the island.  This was all new terrain to me, and I really enjoyed it!  The scenery was beautiful and the trails were quite nice.  Plus, there was some downhill.  My favorite!  

I had no signs of problems from my knee.  Cortisone and rest had it as good as new!  I was feeling like a champ and pushing myself as much as I felt I could.  Around mile eleven there was some horrible footing that made me pretty nervous.  First it was large, golf ball sized gravel.  Then it switched to deep sand.  Then large and small rocks mixed.  Then, more sand.  It seemed to last for a long time, but there was only about a half a mile of it, really.  After this came hell hill.

This was a two mile climb.  Straight up!  No switchbacks.  No curving trails.  Just a brutal two mile climb up to the next aid station.  Around mile twelve I was getting really tired of this and sang out loud to myself as I hiked.  Finally, I made it to a runnable section and Where is my Mind by the Pixies came on my MP3 player.  This was fitting, as I was feeling a smidgen insane and actually fueled my ability to run faster.  Finally I saw the second aid station and two friends at the same time!  Missy, who was volunteering and Laurie who was running.  What a sight!  I ate a couple orange slices and Laurie and I headed out of the aid station together.

I was feeling really happy to be done with that big climb and wanted to pick up the pace.  I soon left Laurie and headed down some smoking fast downhill.  I passed a group of men and headed out onto the start of the Mountain View trail alone.  I was feeling really happy and knew that if I could keep my pace I'd finish between 6:30-6:45.  I texted Jeff to let him know my ETA.  He replied, "you're a badass" which fueled me even more!  There were always people in sight in front of, and behind me and this, also, was a huge help mentally.  

At the mile 20 aid station I was beginning to get tired, but was feeling really great.  A fellow named Bob that I met at the Pie-n-Beer Day marathon was volunteering and helped me with my water and drop bag.  I only grabbed the Pay Day candy bar, but decided to drink some Gatorade also.  That was a mistake because it gave me the crazy burps.  Luckily, it wasn't debilitating, just annoying as hell.  

This whole section of trail had a ton of dried sunflowers all over the trail.  They were poking me, and I had to dodge them like a maze.  I was becoming quite annoyed with them and I said out loud, "Fuck these sunflowers!" and then immediately laughed out loud, because, I mean really?  I was pissed at flowers!?  I amused myself.  I ran through the final aid station without stopping.  There was no point, I was nearly there.  On through the sunflowers!

I started having a rough patch at exactly the marathon mark.  It wasn't bad, just a low point.  I was able to keep running and kept using all my motivating tactics.  I thought of Jeff's text.  I thought of my friends and family.  I thought of how hard I had worked to train for this race.  I imagined Katherine running along with me.  I pushed myself harder.  And then, I was at the final turn to the finish line!  It was a bit of a climb.  Not long, just steep.  Then, the road started downhill and I knew I wasn't more than a mile away.  I turned up the heat.  I pushed myself as hard as I could.  I talked to myself and told myself to run faster!  Then I came over the last hill and I could make out my family at the finish line!  I looked at my watch and realized I was going to come in an entire hour faster than the Buffalo Run!  The kids ran out to me, and again ran into the finish line with me.  I was smiling all the while!  

It was really a very fantastic day!  I am thrilled with my time and how I felt through the race.  No dark places, only good hard work.  After the race I felt great!  We even went out to dinner last night.  Today, I am sore, but okay.  After I took a hot Epsom salt bath, the family and I spent the afternoon cleaning the chicken coop and putting the garden to bed for winter.  From one ultra to the next...

Moon over the causeway.
At the starting line.

First climb, done!
Climb number two.  Not too long and not too tough.

Heading into the switchbacks.  
Lovely south side of the island.

What!?  Rocks!?


Up.  Up.  Up.  The longest climb, that never seemed to end.  But it did!  

Mountain View trail.  

F$@KING Sunflowers!  HA HA
Watch out for Buffalo poop!

Getting tired, but still having fun!

See the salt flats?

Two of the only buffalo I saw all day.
The last climb!  Yay!
Smiling as I came into the finish with the kids!
Craziest tan ever.  Compression sleeves + KT tape.  Lovely.  And the great news?  My knees don't hurt!

6:37:05  (Buffalo Run time was 7:36!)
29.64 miles
13:23 pace
23 out of 32 females
77 out of 103 overall

P.S.  I spent a lot of the race yesterday thinking about doing the 100k next year.  Just thought you should know.