Sunday, January 31, 2010

Days Go By....

Week 4:
Week’s Running totals: 50.08
Running Total for 2010: 189.45
Weight training: 2
Swim: a little

Whew, week #13 to Boston is complete and I’m glad that’s a wrap. Along with January. Not sure about the rest of y’all in frozen tundra’s (that’s not you, Megsie – brat!) but January was one long and cold month! I’m glad to turn the calendar on my bulletin board (yep, still have one of those old fashioned puppies, along with a bunch of other misc papers of school schedules and upcoming meetings. I'm a visual kinda of girl and need to "see" a large calendar, despite how cluttery it looks) and see February. I know I’m jumping ahead a day but I’m more than ready! My legs are feeling good and my running's going well. I need to get a handle on my diet but feeling better about that. As Katie told me the other day, "Control the things you can - your running and your eating." I thought about this a lot on my run yesterday...

Yesterday I got my first 20-miler in for the 2010 (20.08 to be precise. And I’ll all about perfectionism). Woohooo! I know all y’all pay close attention to my training calendar below and saw that I only had 18 on the schedule. Yeah, well, I love to live a little crazy and adventurous sometimes. Hahah. Not really. I’m kind of a planner and organizer so a bit of excitement in Jill land to get an extra couple miles! Yeah, I know how to live!!! Aaaaaacuuuuuallly, I got in 18.89 miles at “pace” but some new Denver transplant stopped me on my run at that mileage point and asked me a gazillion questions about the trail we were currently sharing, a trail that fingered off of this trail, about mile markers, or lack thereof, how far this trail went, and about 50 other trail related questions……10 minutes later, back to wrap up my run and my legs were officially “done” and running strongwas NOT going to happen. I mean, lactic acid was thick as mud, no way I could do anything but shuffle through the last 1.19 miles to my car; I’m more than happy to help out a fellow runner but geez, my legs were just cramping up fast! So though I technically ran 20.08 miles, I’m only using the pace up to the point of question- woman-extraordinaire - which was, I’m happy to report, exactly 9:00 on the dot! This is a bit faster than where my long run pace should be, but on my plan I had a progression of each mile getting faster after mile 9 and since the last half of my run yesterday was uphill (yes, you read “half” ), I was just happy to just maintain a bit faster than normal long run pace.

Today my legs are not as sore as they can be with a long run – YES! Stiff but not sore at all. I met Tara at the gym this morning (Yea again!!) and we did a quad-athelon of sorts: 1 mile warm up on the elliptical trainer, stretching, a quasi ab and glute weight training (quasi because we did a lot of talking and just a bit of this and that; it was just a get together day and show each a few things – actually, while I think of it, we did do quite a bit of many things), followed by some pool time. 4 fun-filled exercised related things at the gym! Tara hasn’t done a lot of swimming lately so this was a big leap for her. We shared a lane and we just swam. And kicked with the kickboard, and talked about the guy next to us who told Tara he was a runner (who looked more like a body builder) training for a triathlon …. and thought Tara and I were Olympic swimmers. Um, yeah, Too funny. Tara did great in the pool on her first getting-back-in-pool shape and I think she’s going to do awesome in her triathlon this summer. Swim Tara, Swim!

I’ve got some squirrely insomnia something or another going on and am irritated beyond belief that I can’t keep my body asleep past some ungodly hours of the morning. Grrrrrrr! I’m sure it's some crappy combo of age, female-ness, and stress…but come on!!! I stress enough during the day while I’m awake, must I also stress when I should be asleep??!!!! Soooo frustrating. I’m certain it’s affecting my running and training; gotta look into a solution somewhere! Sometime around 4a.m. this morning, when I was wide awake, I heard this ruckus outside my bedroom window. I got up and looked and saw a car but it was squealing out of sight quick and I thought it was probably just the paperboy/person on drugs or something and went back to my land of insomnia. This morning, I saw my neighbor’s fence all smashed in - probably a bunch of nuttsy kids with nothing to do out vandalizing property. I’d beat the crap out of my kids if they did something like that and I found out (jk. sorta. they're all bigger than me these days. Punishment would have to involve money, somehow)I guess I’ll make myself “neighborhood watch person” since I’m up and all anyway. Maybe my lack of sleep has one positive perk.

Here's my newest get-my-lazy-butt-moving song: "Days Go By" by Dirty Vegas. I have to say that I am already sick of my Boston playlist I've started compiling. As one who cannot run more than 3 steps without something to distract the task at hand, the music on my iPod is quickly making me manic. Any suggestions of something upbeat and fast, let me know.

That’s about all the home-front and running news. Time to clean the pit…er, house!

Registration opens tomorrow for anyone interested in running the Chicago Marathon. Maybe it’s me but I think there’s something alluring about running a race on 10/10/10 – so come on and join in!

Week’s End Gratitude:
Tomorrow is February (one month closer to warmth)
Bananas with peanut butter
My really warm, fuzzy slippers
Tara meeting me at the gym today
Afternoon weekend naps

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Training the Brain ....

Biggest Loser week #3, all I can say is: LOOKING GOOD!
Top 5 Weekly Winners:
3 - 3.33%
2 - 3.36%
1 - 4.41%
The Overall Leaders:
3 - 5.88%
2 - 6.12%
1 - 6.81%

YES!! I have to admit, I was kinda surprised by the spike in weight loss this week; seems that frustration with lack of progress can sometimes cause one to give up or at least question what the purpose is if ample gains are not seen. Sometimes when we see poor results, we tend to give up easily and throw in the towel, feeling there’s no point, we can’t do it. So I’m pretty stoked at the progress this week.

I know for me, as a runner, sometimes a disappointed race performance gets me down and I question why I keep pushing myself if I can’t make the mark everytime. I’m 46 and I’ve been racing since my teens. I always say there comes a point in your racing where you just reach your limit; age is the enemy of serious runners. How many 80-year-olds do you see out there winning marathons, or any other big-time races out there?

Like other older, overcommitted but still competitive runners, my goal in racing these days is not to set personal bests with each event. I’m trying to shift my thoughts from PR’ing to just doing my best and seeing where I land. My weakness in running has never been training; I can train so much that I’m seriously overtrained much of the time. No, my problem has always been the demons in my head shadowing me with doubt and fear. Dangle a carrot of a specific race time, and I start to stress. Ah, yes, my legs have never been my problem. My complication has always been the monsters screaming in my head: I might fail; I might succeed, and what that means. Succeeding might be scary, after all, for what it means at the next race. Or succeeding might hurt too much; can I run through all the pain? Pain hurts. How do I mitigate the stomach cramps I notoriously get? How do I do this, how do I do that…yada yada yada, blah blah blah….the list can be endless. It’s more than just nerves, it’s anxiety. And I’m ridden with it.

How ironic that as I sit and write this blog, the new edition of RW has a featured article of the one and only Kara Goucher with these very issues. “Her head has always been messed with.”

Ah, I know her pain!

So as I train my legs for Boston, I am also training my mind. My goal is train as fast as I can, train as much as my body allows, and still not get injured. I know I still have PR’s in me, but I no longer want to dangle that time out there and stress over trying to achieve it every race. Those of us who achieve this elusive balance will enjoy a small miracle.

One of my favorite all time books, for training schedules AND mind training strategies to work through the fatigue of endurance sports is: Brain Training fro Runners. I’ve mentioned this book a time or ten but seriously, I love this book. Page 161 has helped me though many a marathons; I re-read that page and those around every marathon eve.

My BL contestants remarkable achievements surpassed my wildest expectations and got me fired up; I hit the gym today and vowed that I will not give up Boston without a fight because I want to see what’s left in me. I may not land a PR there - or I may- who knows, but I will go to Boston with no stone left unturned. I will run those stinking tempo runs (ugh); I will eat the ridiculous amounts of protein (I heart me a morning protein shake!) and stop eating crap when I’m tired; I will hit the monotonously boooooorrrring gym (and might even pick up a weight that is heavier than 5 lbs); and okay okay, I’ll even add stretching daily (did I just say that???) and I’ll listen to the ole bod if it screams, dare I admit it, for me to slow down and let it rest. Eeks, that word rest just caused my heart rate to raise, rest’s a word that hadn’t hit my running vocabulary much so y’all may need to reel me in when I get out of control. Whop me on the side of the head if you must!!!! For me, at least, the best compromise is fewer running workouts but better ones: zippy, hard-charging miles that make me feel like a sprinter, not a slogger. That gets me home sooner, with my sadly aging human infrastructure intact to run another day. My plan, as a type A runner, is to emphasize quality of training. Running, say, three tough workouts a week and going easy on other days will give me better results, in less time and more safely, than slogging through lots of mileage at a mediocre pace. Adding slower, reduced mileage recovery runs on days for the strengthening and stretching exercises I know I need but have been ignoring, or not pushing to my true capacity.

So yeah…this week the Biggest Losers pumped ME up. Who would have thought! But how good it feels!!

Feeling good and strong as I approach 12 weeks to Boston. I think my new shoes have made a huge difference in my knee issue I was having. That weird little tug I was feeling behind my knee is gone (and I’m sure more stretching is just a fluky coincidence). I do have some odd, mysterious numbness just below the knee cap on my left leg. Yes, same leg. I’m just going to ignore it cuz it doesn’t hurt, it’s just the opposite. Now, if I can just get my mind, body parts, and fatigue to follow the same numbness suit, I’m all set for Boston!!!!

Below is a recent pic of me and the kiddos. A quick story behind that picture: I am going to be a quoted, as a running coach, in a book a couple friends have written about the progression from one level of racing to the next. I will plug their book more in upcoming blogs, so be forewarned, but I am pretty excited for them; they wanted a picture of me and my kids. The book is called: Run Like a Mother, and thus, they wanted a pic of me and the kiddos. So there ya go! (and yes, the boys are twins. I know, they don't even look like brothers. I swear my 48" waist carried them to week 34 and they were both in there cooking at the same time - and I have the scares to prove it!)
And finally, my friend, Adam ( is running Miami Marathon this weekend. It's only his 2nd marathon and his first was just a few weeks ago. Help me cheer him on!!! Run Adam RUN!!!!
The weekend’s approaching and long runs are abundant. I have 18 on the plan with the last 9 miles progressively getting faster. And my mind is actually okay with this!! Run strong, friends!

Monday, January 25, 2010

Week 3 2010 / Friends new and old....

Week 3 (recovery week):

Week's Running totals: 36
Running Total for 2010: 139.37
Weight training: 2

Friends: I’ve thought a lot about them recently.

Yesterday I ran with fellow blogger, Tara, on local trail that is convenient to both of us. How cool is that, huh?? I never met Tara before; only things I knew about her is what I’ve read on her blog, but I could tell we were a lot alike. You know, you can just sense that stuff. She’s training for the Colorado Marathon, her debut marathon, which is two weeks after I complete (hopefully) Boston, so we’re both trying to rack up the miles as we get on a schedule and we both love the idea of an occasional running partner. The weather decided to turn blistery cold and windy for the weekend (of course) so we didn’t have time to chit chat much before our 5 mile run but we hit it off instantly; I had a great time getting to know her. The miles flew by in seconds, despite my frozen hands (even with fleece gloves) and her lungs bellowing because of all her messy, ickiness she endured with that nasty embolism last year. Poor thing, I felt so bad. She’s an itty-bitty, tiny thing and cute as can be - I just enjoyed every second we were together. In typical ADDness, I forgot my phone and my camera battery was not charged but I did manage to get some unsuspecting bystander to get one picture snapped. Tara’s great, I consider her a new friend and I can’t wait to run and/or workout at the gym-y with her.

Another blogger, Meg, called me upon the completion of her marathon today. Where she’s been calm and collected about her upcoming marathon, I took it upon myself to be stressed and nervous about it in her behalf. That’s what friends do for one another, you're welcome, Meg! I've got that stress thing down pretty well! I’ll let Meg tell you her marathon victory story but for someone I’ve also never met, Meg and I have a blast emailing our nutsoid life and kid stories – and we are going to be sharing an over-priced Boston hotel together. She is a wonderful new friend which I truly feel blessed to have in my life. I think we’re going to have a lot of laughs in Boston together. Oh, and run our hearts out, of course! And then we're gonna celebrate in style with all those bloggers out there in true Blog land style: FUN!!!

These new friends I’ve met via the world of running blog addicts, like me, are the people who cheer for each other up hills, through intervals, when we don’t feel like running, on that loooooong run and on race day. Miles forged together create a special friendship and intimacy.

I’ve been blog land “tagged” a few times lately (sorry, Beth, you are indeed in loserville by no one asking ya - haha) to list some number between 7 and 10… of “things” about me. Us in blog land don’t get the opportunity to meet many fellow bloggers; the select few I will be fortunate enough to cross live paths are just a small fraction of those that I actually read about daily and become attached to. So these lists, I suspect, are a means to learn a little more about the runners we cheer for each day. I wrote one of these lists a few weeks ago but I keep being tagged again so instead of me doing another, I gathered up some older friends, both runners and non, from my past to do a list for me. About me. Of me. Anything they wanted to say which WAS any part of me. So here’s a few:


1) you love being a Mom
2) you love to run, and run RIGHT
3) you dig mountains and other like challenges
4) you are crazy busy trying to make ends even remotely be in view of each other in this economy
5) you love sugar
6) you are looking for something deeper and more soulful
7) you are in process of becoming even more amazing


Emotional vulnerable

Borderline obsessive when it comes to running

Great smile


Always has encouraging and positive comments for other people

Loves her kids and is very protective

Take on too much as once. Can read as “over ambitious”.










Good Mother

Good Natured



Emotionally needy


Lots of fun

(I apologize for the spacing issues....err!!!)

I gotta love Elaine for having those deep insights. (she’s a great runner and super smart - just took her LSAT’s in her mid-life and passed with flying colors. Way to go, Elaine!!!) I have a few others who wrote but will leave it at that because for the most part, these lists are from people who evidently know me pretty well. I often wonder how I got so lucky to have friends like these. I could laugh and half-kiddingly say that once they find out what I'm really like, all bets are off. But the thing is, they already know, and seem to keep me anyway, cracks and divots and all.

So bloggie friends out there, what do you think you know about me? Maybe you can make up your 7 (or 10) things about me from what what I’ve written - go ahead if you want. No feelings hurt (I mean, Lisa called me “emotionally needy” and I forgave her – eventually :)). In my next blog, I’ll share my thoughts on what you’ve said.

But no matter what, I’m truly blessed for each and every one of you! Thanks, guys!

Entering Boston training week #4 with feeling good legs and ready to ramp up the pace and the miles. A strange numbness around the front of my left knee...but I'm ignoring it. Run well , friends!!

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Failure Paves the Way to Success

Week #2 of The Biggest Loser at work and all is not going well. In fact, it’s plummeted. I know I know, how, after that amazing yellow-piece-of-paper-pep talk I passed out last week, could everyone NOT be enamored with inspiration and come out mean and lean this week? I mean, geeeeez, that was some serious brain training there!!! First I have to say that many did not weight in yesterday; we were off school because today was the first day of the 2nd semester so yesterday was a day for make-up finals and therefore many contestants were not there (including myself, thank you!!). Still, of those that weighed in, the biggest loser winner for the week was a mere 1.88% weight loss. HUH? That’s it? Have we given up already, folks? Seriously!!! If I gave up every time I failed on a run or a race, I’d have never run again after a middle school track meet. No…that’s not how it’s done here!! We fail and we get up and we do it again and again and again until we get it right, dang it!!!!! It’s not easy, nothing we want so badly is. Did I give up my goal to get to Boston after I took off too fast and nearly expired my existence at mile 18 in Big Sur? Did I give up running a marathon after I landed in a medical tent with an IV sticking in my arm due to being overly dehydrated at the San Diego Marathon 8 years ago? (Sorry Megsie, that was one of the worst marathons I’ve ever run!) Did I give up and walk in Boston last year at mile 22 with the worst stomach cramps I’ve ever endured? For that matter, did I give up running marathons, period, at that infamous mile 22 in Boston when I swore to all the heaves above I’d never run another marathon? NO, NO, NO, and NO!!!!! (that last one was only a little well-deserved, mid-race temper tantrum). If I didn't fail from time to time, I wouldn't crave it as much as I do!

I think runners are just cut from a different cloth. One BL contestant told me, “I have so much going on, I couldn’t focus this week.” Yeah well, I have a marathon coming up in Boston in a mere 13.5 weeks and in the words of the one and great Steve Prefontaine: If you fail to prepare, prepare to fail. I have so much going on in my crazy, chaotic life – my weekly my calendar looks like hieroglyphics with so many things scribbled in with arrows and stars and reminders. But I have to prepare for Boston. It’s not an option not to.

Runners don’t know the words failure. At least not this runner girl. I make tons of mistakes. And I cry and whine and complain, I puke and I throw temper tantrums full of big time drama, but I do not give up! The day I give up running after my dreams is the day I fail. I have not reached my potential, I cannot quit. I'm not trying to be self-righteous here, I'm just saying that we can't give up because it becomes too difficult....or especially when it becomes too easy.

Here’s a great article from a friend y’all should read, if you get a chance about not giving up:

Okay, off my soapbox! This Biggest Loser contest is going to put me in an early grave! Maybe I should start a running club with these guys and just make them get their butts out on the track daily!

Running news:
Week 4 of Boston training and it’s time for a recovery week. 3 weeks building, 1 week recovery. Many plans advocate this and I’m a fan!
Monday: Easy 5 miles, felt really good. Yea!
Tuesday: I had hill repeats on my plan but decided to switch Thursday’s intervals to today. I missed intervals last week due to an over-indulgent extra 4 miles the day before scheduled intervals. Retarded, I know. I got a temporary brain cramp and thought I had to get in missed miles so, feeling good, ran 8 hard miles and not 4 easy, as scheduled, and wham, come Thursday’s intervals, my legs were spent. My mind knows better than to up the easy day run before a scheduled quality run but somewhere in my A.D.D.ness, I thought maybe my legs had forgotten. They did not. They have such a good a good memory, darn it! Sooooo, I felt I should try intervals today instead of hills; I needed to test the speed waters. I did 4x1 milers at 10K pace. Well, I did them at 7:30 which would be muy, muy bueno if I could run a 10K at 7:30 pace, so said pace was a 10K “hopeful” pace. But nevertheless, I felt great and had no problems doing them. The ticket to these mile intervals is to stress lactic acid, not to overstress the capacity to do them. Lactic threshold is the point in which your body starts to fatigue at rapid rates. Running at lactic threshold pace is thought to raise your lactic threshold, which should allow you to run faster, and longer, in the future. The biggest challenge in doing threshold runs is to hold the proper pace and resist turning your threshold run into a time trial. Not easy for us who have self-diagnosed A.D.D and think running the fastest we can on every run is the ticket to running faster races. Not that I’ve ever fall into that category (ahem). This is just a little tip for ya from my running coach classes.
Tuesday morning before I did that nice little set of intervals, I was at the gym doing a killer arms/core workout. Cuz Megsie told me her Boston coachy told her that arm strength would be beneficial for the marathon. I’m just going to be a big girl and admit this: I HATE (and I am not afraid to use that word, when appropriate, like now!) to weight train. But I do it. I go screaming and kicking but go I do. 3 times a week cuz that’s what’s recommended. And I don’t like even one single second I’m there. But I was there!! And as of Wednesday night as I write this, my arms are still sore; I take that as a sign I worked 'em well. Oh, and I need to also mention that some lame, jerk at the gym came up to me while I was working out and said, “I need to use that [piece of equipment], that you’re using, you can use it after I’m done, I should just be a few minutes.” Um, hello, I AM USING IT, Lame-o!!!!!
Wednesday: 4 miles easy (Please note: I did NOT have an A.D.D. moment and run 8 instead 4. I therefore should be fresh for Thursday’s hills. And more weight training I hope).

Other news:
I get sinus infections frequently. I mean, so much that I’m sure an antibiotic doesn’t even help anymore. Stress brings them on, for that I am certain, and just common garbage in the air. I am trying to be good and “clean” the nosey more but just take note, you’ll be hearing a lot about sinuses in the coming months, especially since spring is (hopefully) here soon. I’m certain I need something surgical done. One day.

Julie said the nicest thing about me on her blog in her “Tribute to My Favorite Blogs” post. Thanks, Julie :). She said I was always in a good mood. Obvious she’s only been blogging for a few weeks. Stick around, Julie; you’ll see it’s not all rose-colored glasses here in Jill land. One blog had my ex-trainer’s girlfriend SLAMMING me for being “mean.” Yeah, whatever. Not going there. But for the most part, I’m nice, unless people are insensitive and then I can get a wicked tongue. I just get hurt easily. Sensitive girl and all here.

Tonight for dinner I had potato chips and a protein shake. How’s that for balance?

Mel wants me to write 7 things about me. I’m guessing these are 7 things about ME, darn it. I’m not sure I know 7 things about me but I’m going to think about this a little more and jot down some truly amazing stuff (and no, Garbo, you will not learn much about my childhood). More on that later.

I am WAAAAY behind in blog world reading. Thank goodness I’m back to work tomorrow and can get caught up!

Run well, friends!

Monday, January 18, 2010

Week 2 / Gratitude / Sunday

Week 2
Week's Running totals: 42.80
Running Total for 2010: 103.37
Weight training: 3 (yep, you read that right!)
Swimming: 1

5 Things Gratitude:
Matt. Enough said
Full moons
Mexican food
My cat, Patty (official name is Patrick. He loves to roll around outside and makes me laugh)
Paint - cuz I'm tired of my bedroom wall color

One thing I'm NOT grateful for today: that I woke up at 3:45 a.m., wide awake, on my day off work, with a splitting headache. I'm thinking I have sinus infection number 4 million 33.

I was pleasantly surprised I was not very sore yesterday after my 17-miler. I went to the gym and ran a couple miles to shake out the lactic acid. More 3-way lunges, other glute work, ab work, and topped off the gym with a sluggish mile in the pool. Which, who cares about slugging through a mile in the's just a recovery swim.

Run well!!

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Training For Joy

My new miracle shoes

It’s funny when you’re out on your long run and a million different things pop into your head about what you’re going to say on your blog that night about your run; fun, witty and full of expression words….then when you sit down to write, none of those thoughts out there come to mind and you're left staring at a blank screen for an hour.

Sooooo, today: Matt, from running group I occasionally run with, told me the other day he’d run my 17 miler today. Well, originally it was 16 but with a mileage week going further and further in the red, I upped the run another mile. He was game. I was afraid. Matt runs a sub 7 min/mile. I do not. I think I can run one mile at 7 minutes, possibly 2. Proved in October I cannot run a 5K at that pace so 3 miles at 7 is out!

I emailed Megsie the other night and expressed my anxiety and prayed for my survival. Matt’s a sweetie, though, and said he’d run my pace; he just wants to get in the miles since his brother’s generous birthday gift to him was the registration for an upcoming 50K next month in Alabama. Matt found out by an email confirming his registration. Gotta love siblings!

So I’m game. What the heck. It’s only my legs. My sanity. My annoying glute. My “mystery” ailment behind my knee. My slower than molasses long run last weekend.

Matt said he had the perfect “fun” course for us to run: a 17-miler from his house near City Park to Sloan’s Lake, a lap around the lake, then back to his house. Oh, and btw, “the last 5-6 mile are uphill.” Um, did I ever mention me and up hills are not bff’s? It is hard for me to find peace with my body - I struggle with air (aka, need mask and oxygen tank on wheels with a pole, beside me). He said the long, arduous hill at the end is good Boston training for me since um, yeah, that lovely set of hills at mile 17 in Boston kicked my butt last year (welcome 3-way lunges, in case you were wondering why I’m obsessing over getting these puppies in each week!).

I was nervous about the hills. The pace. The fact I don’t normally run that far with anyone and I’m not a big chatterbox when running. Give me a Michelob Light with Cactus Lime beer and some great Mexican food and I’ll talk your ear off; but I’ve always been a lone long run runner- I’m usually gasping for oxygen, the more the better, so how do I mutter a complete sentence for 17 miles? The thought had my head spinning. Sometimes the anticipation and fear alone will inhibit my breathing and jack up my heart rate long before I even set out for a run.
But I was also ready to stop being afraid and give it a shot. I knew Matt would wait, if I had to slow, but I was ready to see what the legs, and the head, had in me.

We took off after lunch; which also had me worried since I’m an early morning long run runner and thus wasn’t sure what to eat. Sensitive stomach girl here didn’t want poor Matt waiting for me in the bathroom for countless hours. Been there done that with my friend, Dennis, one time (actually, the very first time I ran with him. Can’t believe he ever ran with me again after that fiasco). So I made sure not to eat any form of any sugar, since I’m convinced this is the culprit for my bad stomach issues. From his house, up a slight hill, downhill through the historic preststigious mansions surrounding the Denver Country Club and onto the gradual downhill Cherry Creek Path (which happens to be along Cherry Creek). A little concerned about my pace being a bit faster than the normal snail’s pace but figured we were on a gradual down so just maybe I could hold on with Matt’s help. Cross the creek at the fabulous flagship 4-story REI store, potty break and over the highway onto 23rd street and into a part of the city I have never run before. Not overly scenic but new is new and it was so nice to look at something “different” for a change. Turn on a side street and we’re suddenly at Sloan’s Lake. Wow, like wow! We were half done and I couldn’t believe it! The time went quickly. Amazing how fast time goes when in the company of sounds other than my own wheeze!
Matt did most of the talking - things like the 23-hour relay we were on this past summer; the paces and mileage of elite marathon runners (and how we’ll never be. Ha); crazy, stupid things we did as kids and how we never managed to break our necks doing them; his upcoming 50K; things that make our stomach cramp during a race. You know, just “stuff.” I muttered a few single syllable words like: uh-hu, right, ok, sure, I know, wow, really?....with an occasionally 3 to 4-word sentence. I loved listening, just can’t speak and run well – despite the multi-tasker I am!

Mile 12 brought us back to the REI with a potty and gel break and then back on the CC path – which is now uphill. And thus the mind begins to cramp. I put my headphones on and told Matt I’d just follow in behind him, he’d set the pace and I’ll see what I can do. Usually, when I’m alone, I just slow down here. But I was feeling surprisingly good and wanted to see what I had left. Parts of this section are rough. Not steep, by any means, but just loooonggg and gradual. I kept looking at my watch and it was fluctuating between 8:30 and 9:30. Matt said, “You’re only a few seconds off your marathon pace.” I know. WOW! A few times it jumped to the higher 9’s as the steepness increased but I was in awe that I was holding strong. And no aches and pains. No screaming glute. No mystery ouchie behind the knee. No stomach problems. Only a minor hot spot on the left foot as I was wearing new shoes and I always need a couple weeks of miles before they feel good. Matt said, “Let’s take it strong here for a couple miles, give us a small break then charge it the last mile.” Um, okay.

With two miles to go, I dropped my water bottle and stopped for a brief couple seconds to get it. I let Matt go on ahead and I caught up with him at the Country club. Crossing the road, we now were back at the gorgeous old mansions and a very difficult hill. I slowed but remained under 10’s here and just felt so incredibly strong. We turned and were on a gradual uphill on 7th Ave with gorgeous big, old trees lining the road. Living in suburbia U.S.A. where trees are scarce, I love this street - it reminds me of the large Oak trees from my childhood in Iowa. I decide it’s time to push the pace, with a mile to go, and was really happy my legs decided to agree. I looked at my watch a few times and was ever so pleased to see the pace in the low 8’s with a couple high 7’s. THIS, kids, is not typical Jill.

We finished the 17 miles with an avg pace of 9:00 on the dot. Wow, WOW! Last week I ran 15 at a 9:20 pace and felt like crap…today, I ran 17 with an awesome friend 20 seconds faster and felt great!

It was 60 degrees and sunny – such a gorgeous day in Denver and in my head. An exclamation point of a beautifully written run! I won’t always write solely about one run but I had to share today with ya. Maybe it was my new shoes that left my legs feeling great for once, or that my dear friend, Matt, was a wonderful diversion to my own negative thoughts (I'm trying to talk him into being my coach - ha).... but I’m grateful that running empowers me, and grateful that I am part of this running legacy. Now if I can just hold this feeling, cup it carefully in my hand the way I used to catch fireflies as a child, Boston is going to go well. It's funny how you can train for other aspects of running, but you can't train joy. It blinks and disappears; elusive as that firefly, but when you have it ...ah, you are a different runner, even if it's just for that one run.
Whew...I think that beer from above is calling my name....
I hope everyone had great runs today and tomorrow. And to those running marathons and others, run strong!

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Pep talks are an acquired skill

Week 1 of The Biggest Loser contest at work came to a completion yesterday, full of weigh-ins and lengthy confessions: “I ate blank [30 cookies] because I was blank [stressed] because my blank [cat] blank [puked] on the blank [new carpet] and I was therefore too tired to cook.” Followed with, “I didn’t exercise because blank [I’m too busy with finals].” Fill in blanks with whatever you can dream up; 71 contestants, I heard it all. I just listened (I’ve come to the conclusion that we, as a whole, need validation. I know I fall into this category with my running and other aspects of life), nodded in agreement and then proceeded with a, “There are no excuses!” I know, I’m a warm and loving coach, pep talks are clearly an acquired skill (ahem!). By contestant #22, I was done with the sympathetic route and just told them: How bad do you want this? This is a lifestyle change. If you expect to see results, you cannot do the same thing you have been doing. You wouldn’t be here if you were happy with your weight, let’s move towards positive directions and find the solutions! It will NOT be easy; nothing we want so badly is, but the rewards are worth the sacrifices – let’s DO IT!

No one ever said I was soft with my words. Ha.

BUT overall the numbers were pretty good. I mean, we’re not talking Jillian (despite my name being very similar, I can sadly admit that her and I are not in the same fitness category. She’s sporting some pretty amazing arm muscles that I envy to death, amongst other muscle-y parts!) and Bob here; I give a basic workout along with a 6 small meal/day plan that honestly, no one admitted to fully adhering to. If they did, we’d be seeing amazing results. Nevertheless, here’s our results:

We lost 206 pounds this week or 1.53%
Average % lost per person was: 1.45%

The top 5 this week:
5. 3.75%
4. 3.83%
3. 4.03%
2. 4.32%
1. 4.59%

Those numbers aren’t anything to cry about. Sure, we had a few that actually gained (one, for his credit, was on a new thyroid medicine); a few stalemates; and some that barely squeaked by with a fraction of a negative number, but I’m very proud of those who got out there and gave it their effort!

I left each contestant with a little yellow piece of paper that read:
It’s precisely our busy, tired lives that require us to take care of ourselves for wholeness. Exercise keeps everything else in check, alleviating misplaced burdens and unaired emotions. It is purposeful for our own well-being as well as for those around us. We are better parents, friends, workers and everything in between because we have made the time to take care of ourselves. Every single one of us makes time for what is mandatory. For a runner, running is mandatory; it keeps us healthy, it keeps us sane. For me, running is mandatory; I have to make the time. Pay homage to the weight loss you truly want by determining you are a deserving individual. Make the time to achieve your goal and soon, very soon, you will wear that badge of honor and see the results you want!
“If you want something you’ve never had before, you have to be willing to do something you’ve never done before.”

Let’s see if that kicks a little fire in them or not. :)
Btw, my Floridian Friend, Adam, wrote an excellent blog here about just this very subject. He's getting ready to run his second marathon in Miami in a couple weeks (Jan 31st) - stop by and wish him luck (his first was just 7 weeks earlier than this one. What a stud!!! :) )

Running report:
Sunday: Went to the gym and did a bunch of leg weights, stretched a ton, and swam a few laps. Nothing earth shattering but I’ll take it.
Monday: Nada. Sore. Tired. Knew my body would fare better with rest. Okay, let’s not take the pep talk I gave with eloquence above and insert here. Our bodies need rest for fuel, too, and I knew I was going to do myself more damage by running than not. I chose not.
Tuesday: Still a tad sore from 3-way lunges on Sunday (will I ever get to the point of them not killing me for days after!?! Ugh) and got a late start so headed over to the gym for some hill repeats. 1 mile wu + 10 ¼ mile hills up and 10 ¼ mile hills down + 1 mile cool down. That was a good, sweaty workout. Good pace. Did a slew of arm weights and some ab stuff and 2.25 hours (omg!) after I entered the gym, I finally left.
Wednesday (today): Behind on mileage (I have a disease, is there runners-anonymous out there?) for the week due to an added recovery day Monday, I ran 8.3 miles at the state park by my house. 59 degrees and sunny – a perfect day to be outdoors (yea Vitamin D!). Wish I could have run on the trails but rapidly melting snow has left them extremely muddy; I don't relish the thought of mud running. I felt strong and steady but again struggled with that pace thing. For the effort I was putting in, I thought I was running faster. Nope. Avg pace: 9:03. It was suppose to be a recovery run anyway with my pace actually slower but it just “felt” faster. That little annoying “issue” behind my knee was there again but not screaming as loudly as Sunday. Still think it’s hamstring related. Fully intended to go to yoga this evening but some horrible stomach issues after so just went home. Will stretch before I plop into bed here soon.

Other News:
Obviously, the daughter has not fixed my girly baby shower blog. Sorry. Maybe this weekend.

Run well, y’all!!

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Week 1 of 2010 /10 things/ B climbing 14er

Week 1 (This week plus extra 2 days from Jan 1 and Jan 2):
Week's Running totals: 60.57 (42.25 for this week + 18.32 for previous two days in Jan)
Running Total for 2010: 60.57
Weight training: 3 (still playing with this but 2 core/arms and 1 legs)
Swimming: 1/2 (anything less than a mile is a fraction of a swim :) )
Yoga: 0 (I am still rearranging my schedule. Not sure how to fit this in. Yet!)

15.25 miler went okay yesterday. Not sure what's up but my pace just seems really forced. Hard. Tough. I'm constantly looking at my watch and I absolutely don't like that; I can't get into a groove and enjoy the run when I become obsessed with what my pace is. I think I'm going to leave my Garmin home next weekend when I have 16 on my plan. I know I hear gasps from a lot of ya but I need a run where I am just running and enjoying it; it has been a LONG time. But "the glute" was annoying, my ankle was screaming (the left one, which I twist and sprain at least once during marathon training. It flares up now and then but normally I just ignore it, it's not anything to worry about. Been going on and off like this for about 10 years!) and no long run can be complete without some new ailment, it appears, so yesterday's was some mystery muscle behind my knee. I'm thinking it's a tight hamstring so I spent a lot of time stretching it today. I test ran a extremely slow mile. I think it's fine. I hope. Feeling good going into week #3 of Boston training. Got my Boston tickets today and plans are coming together. I am actually starting to get a little excited!!

As mentioned in last post, Marcia tagged me to write 10 things that make me happy. I thought I'd come up with some profound list that would make everyone go "Ahhhhhh, that's so cool" but I didn't. It's just cheesy and pathetic but here ya go (I'm going to replace it for my usual end-of-the-week gratitude list):
1) My 3 kiddos. Most of the time.
2) The Rockie Mountains and that I live so close to them (moreso in summer when I can run in them then in winter when I just lie in my bed in the mornings and look at their amazement. Yes, I have a very nice view from the bedroom window!)
3) The color pink. Duh.
4) Iowa. And my sweet, dear, long-time friends from Iowa. I miss it, but not enough to want to move back guys.
5) The ocean. I know why people flock to CA.
6) Flannel sheets!!!
7) Cute Boots (though I don't own very many, they're just tooooo pricey. Whah!)!!!
8) Running shoes. No brainer! But don't you just love the smell of all those chemicals of new running shoes? ahhhh....
9) A clean house (if you saw it now, you'd laugh at that comment. I do like it clean, I just can't seem to keep up lately).
10) Memories of good times.

Today, twin #2 went and climbed him 14,265' Mt. Quandary today. He's the only 14-year-old I know that asked for an ice axe, crampons, and a video on climbing Mt. Everest for Christmas. He's way into it. And the snowier the better, I think. Not me. Burrrr! But he goes with a group, in particular a good friend and his dad; and they just love it. He left at 4a.m. this morning and returned one very tired and extremely sore puppy at 7:00 tonight - but beaming. Here's a few pictures from excursion today.

There she is: Mt. Quandary!
Snowy Trail


Almost to the top

Those little dots at the top of the peak are people!

Brendan (B) at the top. 4 hours to reach the summit! So very proud of this guy!

Happy miles to all this week!!

Friday, January 8, 2010

I WON....I won IwoniwonIwonnnwiwon i won!

Wow, wow, and wow! I won something!! ME!!!!! My mailbox was jammed packed today with this enormous package and I just smiled as big as a smile can get; I hadn't purchased any post-holiday sales (darn it!) so I knew it could only be one thing: Inside, was my winnings from Shelly's blog, It's Just One Foot in Front of the Other, where I just casually mentioned in a comment that I thought the penguin socks in the picture were hers - and I WON!!! Here's me (notice the bright highlights from previous blog??) and my new swag above and a close-up of the great gifts below.

Okay, these are horrible pictures, on both, but here's a run-down of all my cool loot:

- Dark Chocolate covered pomegranates. Um, hello - totally yummy!!!!
- Blackberry Vanilla lotion from Bath and Body Works. Smells heavenly!
- Pink bubble gum. Who doesn't love bubble gum??!!??
- 3 pairs of the cutest, and I mean CUTEST, heart socks! All the kids will be envious when I wear these to school next week!
- The most adorable penguin card which reads: Peace.

I must have accidentally made it known that my favorite color is pink or something cuz all these really cool things all have a common theme: PINK! Even the pomegranates are pink, in a sense. I am just the happiest runner in blog land today!! Thank you, my dear - you totally made my day and I am beyond grateful for your over the top generous gift! I'm certain I will be a better runner tomorrow on my long run because I'll think of all these cool things and smile :)!

In other news:

Abbey was home from college for a few brief minutes to get her hair cut. I made her get rid of the snowflakes on my borders because honestly!!!! it's ($*@* Jan. 8th and I am officially DONE with snow and cold; I didn't need my blog border to remind me how cold it is! It was so insanely frigid here the past couple days that I think I'm going to move West and see if I can live in Meg's bathroom or something. This is just nuts! So right now, the blog's looking a little baby shower-ish, which I hope to rectify, but she left before I could say yeah or nay (patience isn't one of her virtues. Wonder where she gets that from?!!? Um, that was a rhetorical question, you didn't need to actually answer). I personally don't mind how pink it is (come on, what's wrong with it??) but I'm certain many of you will be nauseated when you open me up! So hopefully in the next few days she can come back and help me make it all beautiful and not so Pepto Bismol like.

Gradual warm up coming this weekend (YES!!!) but still a lot of snow on the ground - which is going to make long run of 15 tomorrow challenging. Did I mention I'm sick of winter? Spring marathon training is a constant challenge and rearranging of the schedule. I think I need a sponsor so that I can quit my day job and just run my long run whenever the weather is cooperative. Any takers? :).

My weight training on Wed (last blog) left my arms a wee-bit sore. Anytime I'm sore from weight training I gotta consider that a success (unless I pulled something, which I'm not ruling out I could never do because half the time I'm just out there randomly pulling whatever together, but thankfully it wasn't that kind of sore!). I blew off tonight's weight training because I think I need to re-adjust my calendar yet AGAIN - weight training on easy days is not really, um, "easy" so I need to switch those days. ugh. Easy 4 instead of 5 today went well, too, and 11x400's yesterday were smooth sailing also. Took forever and a day to finally GET to them but eventually I did. I am having a tough time adjusting back to the real world after two weeks off and actually took two (count that number, people. One, TWO! ) naps after I got home from work yesterday. Huh? Started intervals at 8:00 p.m. last night when I should have been going to bed. What is wrong with me??? Don't answer that, either!

Marcia, from Running off at the Mouth, tagged me to write about 10 things that make me happy (She's off to Boston, too, Meg!). I'm going to go for my long run tomorrow and think about that list more so going to hold off on that for another day. I could ramble off 10 in a heartbeat but wanna make sure to answer correctly... :). And I'm really tired. So off to bed I go so I'm all rested and ready to run (er, skate? snowshoe?) tomorrow morning!

Thanks again, Shelly, I love each and every gift! And thanks to EVERYONE who'd been so supportive with me lately. Tucson, Boston, loss of trainer, weight training. You guys have been the best pick-me-uppers and have fueled me immensely! Thanks!

btw, the calendar. If you click on the date, it brings up the entire schedule for that day. I've had a few questions. Hope that helps.

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Off to a good start....sorta

Just a quick blog, it's approaching that bewitching hour to hit the hay!

Well, you'll be glad to know I went to the gym all by my lonesome today. I decided the only way I'm going to get to the gym is to go directly from work. Do not go home (Do not pass GO. Go directly to jail). And ya know what? I did it!!! A killer core and strength training workout that's probably going to have me wincing tomorrow - but oh well. I still need to sift through countless (and I mean hundreds) of prior training logs and decipher which core elements work best where, but I think I managed tonight to get in what I needed and I didn't wimp out and exit early, like I like to do when I am with only me. Now, if I can keep this going, all's going to be good. I did end up cutting my easy 5 miler down to 3 .... a little too tired after that weight workout. Which is fine, they were just recovery miles anyway. I think it's time, after this week, to start the two-a-days (weight a.m., running p.m.)...I just wish it weren't so flipping freezing outside right now; it's so hard to crawl out of my flannel sheets and down comforter at 4:30 a.m. when the thermometer says 3 degrees (as it currently does). ugh.

But I hit an almost all-time high for A.D.D. moments today. I was in a rush (typical) to get to work today and digging in my closet for shoes. It was dark and I grabbed two. Put 'em on and out the door and off to school. An hour into it (an HOUR, mind you), I look down and this is what I see:

Oh my gawd!!!!!!

A quick trip home (how sweet to live 1 mile from house to school, huh?) to rectify the situation (and thankful no one actually noticed, except the one I actually told why I was leaving):

Ahhhhhhh....that's better. I prefer the blue patent leather Dansko's over the black ones anyway. :) Sometimes, I just gotta love myself for being such a dork!

My training calendar is updated for the week, but I did switch Tuesday and Thursday around because Tuesday's weather wasn't calling for the Arctic cold front and snow to prey upon me like it is right now - so in one of my better calls (ahem), I decided to run hill repeats on a 40 degree day with only a touch of snow on the road instead of 9 degrees with a ton of snow (and I can do intervals on my basement treadmill. yay). The hill repeats went very well - I gotta pat myself on the back for that decision! Anyway, I will update my calendar each week for those that want to follow. Maybe you can make me accountable :).

Run strong, friends!

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Don't Fear the Reaper

It’s Sunday night and I’m feeling pretty proud of myself for day 3 of the New Year and adhering to one of my promised “new me” changes by landing in bed before midnight. I somehow got into a horrible habit of hitting the pillow well past the mandatory sleep time runners need. Heck, I’ve been way past half of the recommended sleep. Trying to crank out “one more thing” before closing the day and that thing turned into one more and then yet another. I know this was affecting my training. But sometimes, many times, it’s not a matter of when I get to bed, but rather when I wake up - which seems to be at the ungodly hour of like 3a.m, and never falling back to sleep. Well if that’s the case, then I should try to land on my pillow just a tad earlier than I have been. A good goal, I think (one thing that’s good about this is that I have no problems getting up for an early marathon or a training run in the mountains. I’m up anyway, let’s just go!! But it does make for a very long day…especially when I have to work). Normally, though, I have no problems falling asleep. Sunday night, this was not the case.

One word: Anxiety.

Over what? Initially, I wasn’t sure. At 8:00 that night, I was doing some writing and was lying in my bed doing so (I know, I know…a very bad habit I got into … no wonder my back hurts from time to time.) and I was so tired, I almost passed out right there – but come 10:00, when my head hit the pillow, I was wired and I was wide awake. Errr! Go. To. Sleep. NOW. Jill!!!! NOW!! Okay, NOOOOOWWWW!!!!

Didn’t work. Does it ever when we force it?

I don’t like change much. I’m kinda one that gets content with the way things are, and I definitely like my duckies all lined up and organized. You can call me anal if you want…I am, but not about everything – just certain things. Ya know, like my training. Monday marked the first day I would have started back with my trainer after my mandatory time off from Tucson. Monday marked a day of change – I’m starting the New Year all on my own. Ah…welcome anxiety!! It all hit me during my alone time with me – when I needed to sleep. I realized I didn’t have to get up at 4:45 the next morning and start my weight training and I suddenly questioned everything about my running. The fact I’ll be doing 99.9% of it by myself for Boston absolutely terrified me. And I couldn’t sleep. I was fearing the reaper....that weight training reaper!

I woke up yesterday in a complete sleepy-eyed fog and stumbled into work. Great. First day back and the kids are going to wonder just how wild of a NYE night I had playing cards with the neighbors.

Fast forward to finally exiting work Monday, having somehow managed to make it through the day, excited because I had a hair appointment to get new highlights. Nothing like some new brightness to the hair to elevate your mood, huh?? The woman that does my hair lives in my neighborhood and her biz is in her basement. Convenient!! And she’s just really nice, I love spending time talking to her. Well, in typical A.D.D. form, I knock on the door of her house and she answers, “Hi, what’s up?” Um, I have an appointment today? Apparently, no. That’s tomorrow, she stated. Yeah, I love my A.D.D moments! She managed to work me in regardless – yea – and it pumped me up for the 7 easy miler I had last night.

Hop on the treadmill at 8:00 last night to finally do my 7. I know, late, but I had so much to do when I got home and really was procrastinating the whole thing. I brought my book I’m reading, my iPod, my cell phone so I could text the daughter who just went back to college and turn on some HGTV. Nothing like a little distraction for the task at hand: running. I’ve never run with a book at the forefront o f my treadmill – I have to say, I liked it! It wasn’t the easiest thing to read but wow, it really helped pass the time away.
But while reading, texting, watching tv, and listening to my music, a song came on. And not just a song – a song that literally erased my anxiety in a flash.

Don’t fear the reaper
Baby, take my hand
Don’t fear the reaper
We’ll be able to fly
Don’t fear the reaper

Metaphor girl listened and the words of Blue Oyster Cult hit me like a brick. Okay, the lyrics don't pertain to running, I'm not sure what they are referring to actually, but this is what translated: Don’t be afraid, Jill. Trust your training, your experience, your judgment. You will be just fine. You know what to do. Hold your own hand, you will fly! Yeah, I'm just kind of corny like that! I tell ya, I'm just all about anything inspiring and this song seem to find it's way to my head!

I went to bed last night and felt good. I slept well (ish) and woke up feeling energized to tackle the weight/core training on my own. I may not like it (anyone actually LIKE weight training??), and I may not enjoy it….but I know it’s pivotal in my marathon performance and I need to stick with it.

At work, there’s a Biggest Loser contest going on, starting today, for staff and faculty to see who can lose the most amount of weight in the next 12 or so weeks (I forget the exact time frame). The chick running the thing asked if I would be interested in sharing some of my wisdom so I made a weekly exercise and nutrition guide, it’s pretty basic in the exercise department – I have no idea what type of lifestyles most are coming from…but just determined a sedentary one was probably where most were. Today was weigh-in #1. For the entire day, I listed to about 60 people explain to me why they have fallen from healthy habits and gotten into a rut of bad choices. I guess I was the priest they were making their confession to. I had to smile. It is very special for me to take something I love as much as running and tie that into words and images that resonate with people coming from every perspective, especially a sedentary one. I explained to many, who told me they had no time to work out, that every single one of us makes time for what is mandatory. For a runner, running is mandatory; it keeps us healthy, it keeps us sane. Running for me is mandatory and there are no excuses!

There are no excuses. Weight training and core strengthening is mandatory, I will do it. I’m going to sit down tonight, with my newly brightened hair, and make a plan of what I need to do and, like my running, find no excuses not to do it. I’m actually very excited. I will not be afraid :).

Friday, January 1, 2010

Week 52.5/End of 2009 mileage/Gratitude

So 365 days turns out to be a few days over 52 weeks. I wanted to send my year's tally for 2009 and well, I might as well do a gratitude list also.
Week 52.5:
Week's running totals: 19.25
2009 Running totals: 1821.94
Weight/core: 2 (I did them on my own and I pushed them hard. So hard, in fact, I couldn't even walk after Monday's 3-way lunges. yikes. This must mean they are doing something beneficial, yes?)

- I was able to finish the year with some pretty high mileage and not endure any serious injuries. Oh, a knot, or 10, in my right calf and some glute pain from time to time but nothing that some stretching and massage therapy couldn't cure to get me right back on the running road.
- My friends: running, non-running, blogger and e-friends all alike.
- My daughter, Abbey, is making new friends in college. This is a major feat; high school wasn't the best social environment for her.
- My camera so I can document to you all my running, and non running, stuff :).
- My new Jack Daniels' Running Formula book, which has "proven programs" for the marathon! Yah!

Yesterday, as mentioned in last blog, was the annual New Year's Eve run/lunch with the Pickled Prostates group that I sometimes latch on to. I'd run with them more often, but they all run at lunchtime in downtown Denver and I don't work downtown Denver so only get the opportunity to run with them on occasion when I'm not working. Summer, when I am off work, tends to be a bit too hot to run at lunch for this girl. But we do a lot of summer weekend race prep runs sprinkled with some races and well, I just adore these guys. Picture above at top is of part of the group yesterday (many were not able to make it). I am in the front, kneeling, in blue jacket. It was a gorgeous, sunny day - a great day to toast to 2009 and all our accomplishments!

I'm not going to lie to ya, I am way lethargic today from one too many New Year's cocktails last night and have had one seriously lazy day. I did, however, manage to get in a 4.46 mile run in at an 8:46 avg pace, which I find amazing considering how miserable I feel. No more alcohol til Boston celebration! I just don't handle it well. Anyway, the first week of Boston running is going quite well. I made all my runs and I did all my weight training/core work. Monday, I did some leg work and it was probably today before I did not feel the effects of those. Seriously, ouch!!! I'm trying to get my glutes stronger to tackle the hills in Boston that I fought, and failed, last year so doing lots of hill training and glute development. I think it will be better once I do them regularly. If they hurt bad, they must be working some under-developed muscles, eh? On the docket is a 13-miler tomorrow but I'm going to see if I can do 14. If y'all notice, I have a calendar at the bottom of my blog; I will update it each week to let you know in advance my training for that week, if you want to follow along. It's going to get intense a few weeks, but I'm up for the challenge. One thing I want to do is start swimming at DU as part of a master's swim team so will add that after I figure out the logistics.

I'm hoping 2010 is going to be as incredible as 2009. One of my goals: 2010 miles. Seems fitting. I can't wait!!!