365 Days Later

I wanted to end my running streak where it began, Central Park in NYC.  Last year on October 25th my friend, Lizzie, and I went to NYC and ran in Central Park while we were there she didn’t know at the time but I was starting a run streak.  Heck at that point I wasn’t sure I was going to; 365 days seemed like such a long time.  The next morning at breakfast I told Lizzie about my idea of a run streak and that I was becoming a vegetarian.  I’m not really sure what she thought, but I do remember her telling me that is was great that I was becoming a vegetarian but I needed to eat healthy as well.  Advice I followed over the last year.

Penn Station in Baltimore
Penn Station in Baltimore

On Friday I woke up early before work and ran, I wouldn’t have time later.  Lizzie and I were taking the train to NYC and had dinner reservations at 2200 hrs.  The train ride to NYC was pretty quick and painless, last year we took the bus and that was rather interesting.  Once we arrived we walked to our hotel, changed, and walked to dinner.  We had made reservation 3 months ago and had been looking forward to dinner for quite some time.  If you ever find yourself in NYC and want an absolutely amazing meal make reservations at Per Se!  Trust me it is worth it!  We actually had to take one of the dessert courses with us because we were so full.  I can even put into words how amazing the food was!

IMG_6255

Saturday morning Lizzie went to meet one of her friends and I decided to go for a run in Central Park.  Our hotel was only 2 blocks away.  I wanted to try and get a longer run in since I had been taking it easy most of the week.  On Day 364 I managed to logged 12 miles; I looped Central Park and then did an out and back path.  There were so many people in the Park, bikers, runners, walkers, horse carriages, there was even a race going on.  I really enjoyed the run even though it was a bit chilly.  After the run we met a friend of mine for lunch, rested up a bit, had a dinner at supposedly the best falafel cart in NYC according to Yelp!  We aren’t so sure about that but it got the job done.  After dinner we made our way to Times Square to see An American in Paris and enjoy wine from a sippy cup!  Definitely  a highlight!  The show was fantastic.  Again I would recommend seeing it if you have not and are in NYC.

IMG_6242 (1)

Sunday had arrived, this was day 365.  There were plenty of times I thought it wouldn’t get here but it had.  It was gloomy out and a light rain was falling in the city, but it was time to run and weather couldn’t stop us.  We left the hotel and started to walk towards Central Park, Lizzie said to me ‘Are we going to walk or run?’  With that we starting running towards the Park.  We ran out and back and stopped to take a selfie, just as we had done 365 days ago.

IMG_6254

It felt good to complete the streak.  I’ve never done anything for 365 days straight before, at least nothing that required me to go out of my way to do it.  In total I estimate during that time I ran approximately 1355 miles, with lots of them coming during marathon training.  I’m glad I completed the streak, but as Lizzie pointed out to me a year is an arbitrary number, so very true.  Why not make it two years?  I’m not, but what made me choose a year?  I suppose I thought it would be a good measure of time and give me something to do everyday.  Some people have said it was inspiring, I didn’t do it to inspire anyone but I’m glad I did.  I do hope that I have motivated someone, somewhere to run, or embrace a healthier lifestyle.  In the last few weeks of the streak I began looking forward to stopping and resting my legs.  I thought about some things when it comes to a streak and keeping it going.  One person who inspired me and has a streak she doesn’t keep track of (at least I don’t think she does, anymore) is my Mom.  Twenty years ago she gave up smoking, I still remember the day she quit.  We were at the park fishing and it started raining, my Mom, Dad, and I started running for the car.  Before we made it we stopped at a pavilion to catch our breath and that is when my Mom quit smoking.  She took out her cigarettes and threw them in the trashcan.  She was pretty winded and finally realized smoking was destroying her lungs and her health.  She hasn’t smoked since.  I’m really glad she quit that day.  I know my Mom is going to read this so ‘Keep up the streak Mom, you’ve got 19 years on me!’

Not the actual trash can
Not the actual trash can

Looking back on the streak it was challenging at times, but helped me stay on track and maintain a balance in my life.  I am sure I will write more about what the streak has meant to me in the future, when I’m ready to share some things.  In the meantime I am looking forward to letting my legs rest.  If you are wondering did I stop, no, I ran on Day 366.  It is Tuesday evening about 2145 hrs; as I begin to write my blog for Thinking Out Loud it feels odd that I haven’t ran today.  As I showered tonight I actually thought about running after getting out of the shower, and I’m thinking about running now, but it is late and I am much to tired.  Just a few days ago that wouldn’t have stopped me, but today is finally a rest day!

2014, yikes!
2014, yikes I had gained way to much weight!

IMG_6260

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I’m not going to stop running or training, I decided to try and break 4 hours in the marathon again!  I’m running the Outer Banks Marathon on November 8th.  Between now and then I will be training, but with a few more rest days.

Stay tuned!

Have you added a race to your season?

-Veggie Fueled Runner

IMG_5857
–Running 3:16–

Week 14 (9/14-9/20)

Other than the rough end to Week 13, it was a great week.  I’m looking forward to this week and the lower mileage.  I am also looking forward to the finishing my streak in just over a month!  I never thought I would make it this long, I just need to stay healthy and get through the next 6 weeks!

Monday:  5.2 Miles (Pace 7:58)

What a difference a day and some hydration makes.  I ran the same route along the water tonight as I did last night, the weather was near the same, but I was able to run much better.  Sometimes I forget how important hydration is when it comes to running.  I eased into the first mile and then negative split every mile after.  Today’s run was a confidence booster after last night!

Tuesday:  1 Mile (Pace 8:14)

Time got away from me today.  After work I had a meeting I needed to go to which started 30 minutes late.  By the time I got home I didn’t have 6 miles in my legs, plus I had an early day on Wednesday.  I did a loop around my neighborhood to keep the streak going!

Wednesday:  5 Miles (Pace 8:11)

This morning was an early morning followed by a long drive to a college fair I had to go to.  The first session was 4 hours, then a break, and an evening session of 2 hours.  My plan was to run in between the sessions.  I had packed extra clothes with me so I could shower after running.  At the first session I was talking with some of my colleagues I hadn’t seen in a while and they were planning to run during the break as well, though we were all running different distances.  The first session ended at 1300 hrs, which just happened to be when you could register for the SeaWheeze Half Marathon.  After some tense minutes of waiting, I was able to register!  I was really lucky to get in there were only 10,017 spots and the race sold out in 11 minutes.  I was really pumped and ready to run.  I found a gym where I could shower after running, I had to buy a day pass that was $15.  Pretty expensive for a shower but sometimes that is the cost of running :/  The sun was high and the humidity was just as high, it was a rough run considering how cool it had been in the evenings the last few days.

seawheeze

Thursday:  1 Mile (Pace 8:56)

Today was a really early morning after not getting home till late, I only had about 5.5 hours of sleep and a long day ahead of me.  My day was pretty much standing in one spot for about 7 hours while I presented to students and another college fair.  My legs were really sore from standing in one spot all day.  I didn’t have the energy to do a tempo run and didn’t really feel like running at all.  I managed to eek out a slow mile but I wasn’t to happy.

Burning the candle at both ends.
Burning the candle at both ends.

Friday:  1 Mile (Pace 8:33)

I don’t say this often but I was happy for Friday to arrive, it had been a long week!  After another early morning and another 4 hours of standing my feet and my legs were pretty sore.  After work I helped a friend move some dance equipment to where she teaches on the other side of town.  When I finally got home I responded to some work emails and then took a nap for 2.5 hours.  I woke up, ran, ate dinner, had a glass of wine, and went back to sleep.  I was exhausted from the week.  My friend invited me out, but I was too tired to go, I felt bad but I knew I would be any fun.

IMG_5982
Single serve, so you don’t have to open a whole bottle…don’t judge me 😉

Saturday:  12 Miles (Pace 8:51)

After a solid nights rest I was feeling pretty good!  The weather was overcast and really foggy when I woke up.  I drove to the BWI Trail to meet FKBT and Sarah to run.  Even though it was overcast it was still humid.  Sarah was doing her long run, 22 miles, and I needed to do 12.  I planned to run one loop with her and then she would continue on.  FKBT was planning on meeting some friends to go on a long bike ride.  At the start of our run, another runner waved me down, we belong to the same running group on FB, and he recognized me.  It was nice to meet him, I’m always surprised by how awesome the run community is and you never know when you will actually meet someone you only know from social media!  As we went around the loop lots of other runners and bikers said ‘hi’ and one walker even shared some words of encouragement as we passed them.  People on the trail are much more friendly than most in Baltimore.  It was a nice loop to run around, differently scenery and some hills but nothing to big.  I think I slowed Sarah down a bit, I like to go a bit slower on my longer runs, we actually talked about that at the beginning and she said it would be good to test out her pacing.  After my 12 we stopped together briefly to take a runselfie and for Sarah to get some water and she was off on the loop again.  It was nice to get the run out early in the day.  My legs still were not fully recovered but I was happy to get the miles in!

Still smiling after 12 miles!
Still smiling after 12 miles!

Sunday:  7.3 Miles (Pace 7:47)

After an hour of trying to get my new printer from work to scan I was ready for a run.  The air was cool and crisp perfect for running.  I decided to run at the Promenade along the water.  I was hoping to run 6 miles but once I got going I figured I would add some extra to make up for what I had missed earlier in the week.  I eased into the run with a slow mile and then what felt pretty easy turned out to be a 7:30 mile.  I was feeling pretty good and decided to try and stay around that pace.  Half way through my run I was surprised at how strong I was feeling.  The miles were just passing by.  I finished strong and really happy with this run considering how the week had gone.  Even though this was a low mileage week it was rough, standing in one place really took its toll on my legs and feet.  I am a bit nervous for the upcoming week and the 50+ miles I will need to do.  Oh today was day 330 of the running streak, 5 weeks to go!  4 weeks until the Baltimore Runinng Festival and 26.2!

IMG_6023

Total Miles:  32.5

-Veggie Fueled Runner

IMG_6016

Week 4 (7/6-7/12)

Well Week 3 didn’t go exactly as planned.  The weekend was a lot busier then I thought it was going to be and I missed my longer run 😦  Don’t forget to sign up for my giveaway on July 30th!

Monday:  4.4 Miles (Pace 8:00)

I ran with a great group Charlotte Running Company!  They really made me feel welcome, which was great since before I went to the run, I wasn’t sure I wanted to run.  The course was was full of hills, so much so I’m going to consider that my hill workout for the week!  The run was very scenic and I met some great people during the run. I was really glad to be in Charlotte and really happy I came to the run club.

Tuesday:  7.2 Miles (Pace 8:00)

After Monday’s run I was excited to get out and run with another new run group, but unfortunately I was let down.  The group I ran with 5 on the Booty didn’t match up to the great running experience I had the night before.  I ran to the group, which was about a 2 mile warm up and then a 5 mile loop with the group.  The course was pretty flat and even though it was very warm the humidity wasn’t nearly as bad as it is most of the time in Baltimore.  I was glad to get in a longer run!

Wednesday:  3.1 Miles (Pace 7:58)

Unfortunately, due to work commitments I wasn’t able to run with another group in Charlotte today.  I actually ran during a break in the middle of the day when the sun was high and the heat was cranked up!  Though it is hot in the south the humidity doesn’t compare to home.  I ran a loop around the city that I am familiar with and passed by several well-known landmarks; Epicenter, Time Warner Arena, NASCAR Hall of Fame, BB&T bank, and Bank of America stadium.  It was a nice run around the city and reminded me why I like visiting Charlotte so much.

Thursday:  2.25 Miles (Pace 8:11)

Well I said Monday would count as my hill workout, but as I looked at the training schedule I felt like I would be going off track if I didn’t do hills again today.  I did 4×400 hill repeats.  I found a hill with a good incline not far from the hotel.  It was suppose to climb close to 100 degrees today, fortunately I was able to get my run in earlier in the day but it was still in the 80’s.  After two repeats I took my tank top off and set if by a light pole.  I had seen people do it earlier in the week and no one stole it, so I figured I would be okay.  The last repeat was grueling but I finished it, picked up my tank top and ran another quarter mile to cool down.  I’m glad I decided to do hills again.

Friday:  1 Mile (Pace 8:35)

I landed in Baltimore around 1830 went to dinner with some friends and since the training plan has today as a rest day I only needed to do a mile to keep the streak alive!  I decided to run a mile loop around my neighborhood, after running in Charlotte all week it was sort of depressing to be back home and running through Dundalk.  No worries though, next week I will be in Providence!  I really do enjoy running other places!

Saturday:  15.1 Miles (Pace 8:59)

So I changed up the training plan again today; today was supposed to be a 6 mile run at race pace, but two of my friends were planning on a long run so I decided to join them.  I like running with people, it makes the run go by more quickly and you are suffering together! 😉  We started early, 0730, it was overcast and not to humid, we usually loop Ft. McHenry, but they don’t open till 0900 so we ran around the city a little while before heading that direction.  It worked out perfectly we arrived at the Fort just after 0900 and we were at 9 miles, so we could loop the Fort and head back and we would be at 15.  By this time time the sun had started to come out and heat things up, but it was better than our last run together when it started pouring down rain.  In the last three miles the sun was brutal around the harbor promenade, but we kept our pace and finished strong.  Our run was a good start to our Saturday and we were all glad to get it out of the way!

Sunday:  4 Miles (Pace 7:45)

Since I switched up my long run and did it yesterday and I made up some miles I missed last week earlier this week, I still wanted to make sure I did all my miles for this week so I ran 4.  Wow, did that make sense?  I wanted to run at a bit of a faster pace since my longer runs are slower.  I ran each mile with a negative split and actually think I could have been a bit faster but I had a pretty large lunch and my stomach was a little upset so I didn’t want to push to hard.  The evening air felt nice, over the heat I had been running in this week.  When I finished my legs felt strong and I knew I had a good week of training!

Total Miles:  37.05

-Veggie Fueled Runner

JWU Charlotte #cxclt15
JWU Charlotte #cxclt15

 

Week 3 (6/29-7/5)

Week 2 of training is in the books and it was a good one.  Ran in everything from the humidity to the pouring down rain!

Monday:  3 Miles (Pace 8:16)

Today, I was pretty worn out and did not feel like running, but for the streak and my training I did.  The weather was warm, in the 80’s, not nearly as hot as it was last week thank goodness!  I ran in my neighborhood, there were quite a few people out and they are beginning to set up for the Heritage Fair this weekend.  That is a tradition in these parts!  They say in Dundalk we have two seasons Christmas and 4th of July.  Normally the end of my loop is a slight decline, I decided to change the route a bit and end on a slight incline.  I ran negative splits each mile.  During my daily runs I haven’t been trying to set a blistering pace, especially as I’m increasing my mileage.  After my run I stopped at Subway and order a 6 inch veggie sub and walked home in the cool of the evening.  At the start I didn’t feel like running but afterwards, I felt refreshed and energized as I do most times!

Tuesday:  6 Miles (Pace 8:37)

It was overcast when I started running today and was hoping to get my run in before the rain came.  In mile 2 of my run, the sun came out for a little while, but then in mile 5 the sky opened up and there was a brief shower.  By the time I finished my run the rain had passed.  Even though it was overcast, it was still humid and muggy.  When the breeze picked up it felt nice and kept me somewhat cool during the run, but even before the rain came I was soaked with sweat.  My legs felt strong but tired if that makes any sense.  I had even splits during the run, I wasn’t trying to do any speed work and just wanted to stay consistent.

Wednesday:  1.2 Miles (Pace 8:21)

I went off the plan again today, I was extremely dehydrated and not feeling well all day.  I felt like a reset was needed.  I waited till the evening air came so it would be a little cooler when I ran.  I took the pace easy and was actually surprised I had any fluid to sweat out.  I was just glad to keep the streak alive, earlier in the day I thought I may be calling it over.

Thursday:  3 Miles (Pace 8:04)

Today was the fist time since running cross-country in high school that I actually did a speed workout.  Before the run I was sort of nervous.  I programmed my Garmin 220 for interval training; today I would be doing 4 x 800s.  I put off the run earlier in the day and it was close to 21:30 when I started (military habit with the time, 9:30 for civilian types ;)).  I started with a non-timed quarter mile warm up before the intervals.  I was bummed I couldn’t see how fast I was running the intervals until the workout was over.  The training plan says to run faster than marathon pace so I was running what I felt was reasonably hard.  After each 800, I took a quarter mile break, I ran very easy and tried to focus on getting my breath under control.  After the third interval I wasn’t sure I had another one in me, I focused on deep breathing and took off for the final 800.  I was happy to finish and for the cool down!  I was really happy to see my 800 times, surprised actually!

1st-800:  3:25     2nd-800:  3:15     3rd-800:  3:19     4th-800:  3:16

Each 400 break was around 2:30.  My overall 800 pace was 3:18, I’m pretty happy with that for my first speed workout in almost 15 years.  My 800 pace was much faster than even my 5k pace, I’m actually thinking maybe I should run a 5k soon to see where I am at.  I haven’t ran an ‘official’ one since December when I PR’d at the beginning of the streak.  Tonight was a good run, and a nice surprise!

Friday:  1 Mile (Pace 8:46)

This morning when I got out of bed my legs and feet were throbbing in pain.  I should have stretched before bed, lesson learned.  My big toe on my right foot was really sore as well, the intervals really kicked my butt!  I spent the morning catching up on some work and writing the blog about becoming a race director.  My best friend called and convinced me to go out on the boat for a few hours, even though I knew I should have ran, I decided to go the weather was perfect for it.  It wasn’t a long trip, I told a local business owner and friend that I would work his snowball stand at the Heritage Fair.  I’ve been helping out the last 3 years at Stouten’s Snowball stand, best snowballs around!  On the boat my quads really started to tighten up, so much I thought I had pulled something, after massaging them for a bit, I was feeling better.  We headed back in after only an hour and a half, I had to go work the snowball stand.  I spent the next 6 hours on my feet, when I finished up it was late, after 10.  I did not feel like running.  I changed and hit the pavement, my legs felt like lead blocks.  My feet clunked as the hit the ground, not my normal quite stride.  I couldn’t get into a good groove so I just clunked along for a mile, to keep the streak alive.  I’m not looking forward to the 6 I have to do tomorrow, oh and another 6 hour shift at the snowball stand.

Saturday:  6 Miles (Pace 8:00 )

Today was a busy day, lots to do on the 4th of July.  Even with a nap I didn’t feel like running but knew I had to, I didn’t want to run late again, especially with more miles to do.  I went back and forth between wearing my sweat gutr or a hat, since it was raining on and off most of the day.  I opted for the hat.  Starting out I was hoping for an 8 min pace, but during the run I thought I was feel strong and thought I might be able to squeeze in under that.  At the end I was right at 8 mins.  About half way through the run, I saw something that really bothered me and got me thinking for a while, it was the Confederate flag.  It got me thinking so much I actually wrote a brief blog about it.  The run was overcast with light rain on and off.  I felt good through the run, but was glad to be finished I had so much more to do today!

Sunday:  1 Mile (Pace 8:49)

Well today I really went off the training plan, I was supposed to do 8 miles and when I woke up I had every intention of doing so, then the day started.  During breakfast I started receiving emails regarding a situation in the community which I needed to address, throughout the day I tried and stay out in front of it.  I don’t want to go into to much detail but it was distracting.  Next week I am traveling for work, so I needed to get a haircut, cut the grass, do laundry, and a few other things.  I also had to work the final shift 6-hour shift at the snowball stand.  After standing for over 18 hours in the last 3-days I just didn’t have 8 miles in me and I didn’t get home till close to 2230.  The days events and dealing with a variety of things left me feeling deflated, though I think I could have ran more than a mile, I still had some emails I needed to send and that was bothering me on the run, so I kept it to 1 mile.  Hopefully, I can make those miles up, and it is still early in the training cycle.

Oh, Don’t forget to sign up for my free giveaway!!!

Total Miles:  21.2

The Sweat Life
The Sweat Life

Week 2 (6/22-6/28)

Week 1 in the books, and running on the plan has already strengthened my legs, but has tired them out in the process.

Monday:  3.1 Miles (Pace 8:12)

The heat and humidity has not subsided, we are having a classic Baltimore summer!  Today I took a loop around the neighborhood, I waited till later in the evening to run but that didn’t provide any relief.

Tuesday:  5 Miles (Pace 8:30)

I’ve been doing some cross training and riding my bike a bit more, on Tuesdays I run at Tin Roof and normally ride my bike.  I went a bit early for an appointment I had and then rode to Ft. McHenry.  We normally start running at 6:45, but the skies opened up at 6:15 and there were bad storms for about an hour.  Once the rain let up, I rode home, in total I did 2o miles on the bike.  The storm had really cooled things down and it was still overcast when I started running.  That didn’t last long about two miles in the sun came out and the temps started rising again.  I did have a negative split for the run!  My quads were really sore, as I was running I was thinking about scheduling a massage for Friday!

Wednesday:  4 Miles (Pace 8:12)

Today’s training plan called for 3 miles but I decided to do 4.  On Wednesdays I normally run with City Sports Run Club, that is where I first started running with a group about 2 and a half years ago.  The group isn’t as large as it was in the past, but a few new people came this evening.  I didn’t want to turn around before any of them since there was just a few of us.  Each mile was a negative split, the run felt strong and it wasn’t as humid as it had been the last few days.

Thursday:  1.5 Miles (Pace 7:02)

So I was feeling unsure about the tempo run the training plan called for, I’ve never done one before and was hoping someone would run one with me but everyone was busy or had already ran.  I decided I would do hills with November Project and Sarah in the morning tomorrow.  Tonight I decided to do a quick mile and a half, faster than my race pace.  When I started I was thinking about a new PR for the mile but the humidity was a little much and I didn’t warm up for it.  No excuses, I just didn’t have it in me, but I was happy with the run!

Friday:  4 Miles (Pace 8:24)

Normally I’m not a morning runner, which is kind of odd considering when I was in the military I was up almost everyday at 4 am or early for PT.  Today I woke up at 5:30 to go to November Project and run with Picky Runner.  When I went outside I was pleasantly surprised at how cool it was, and thought maybe I should start running in the morning more often!  I rode my bike to Patterson Park, that is where NP meets.  I think I am finally starting to get over my social anxiety with NP, they pride themselves on being weird and I think I’m starting to get use to it.  Most people think I’m an extrovert, but those who really know me, know I’m an introvert and it takes a lot for me to be comfortable in social situations where I don’t know everyone.  In between 1/2 mile hill repeats, we did partner pushups and hoisties and every other repeat we were suppose to do ‘last man up’ sprints.  Last man up sprints use to be called ‘Indian Sprints’ but we live in a post-PC World now.  I did a variation of those exercises and ran with some new people today!  I didn’t catch their names, maybe next time.  NP has a lot of good runners and happy people, so I think I will keep going when I can.  Today was a good day of running days like today are why I run, or maybe it was all the endorphins, running releases those, It’s Science!  All this before 8am!

Saturday:  11.1 Miles (Pace 8:59)

I decided to move my long run to today.  After a few hours of delays and wishful thinking that the weather would clear up, my friends Cat and Elizabeth convinced me to go running, well I suppose we all convinced each other.  The weather had finally cooled and was in the 60’s!  When we started the rain had stopped but it was cloudy.  The wind started to really pick up in mile 3, by mile 4 the rain had started but wasn’t to bad.  Somewhere around mile 6 the sky really opened up and it stayed that way the rest of the run.  At first it really didn’t bother any of us but by mile 9 our shoes and clothes were soaked and we just wanted dry feet and to not be weighed down by our clothes.  Around mile 10 is when we all came to the consensus we were miserable, but Cat was trying to talk me into another 3 miles.  I just didn’t have it in me, my stomach had started hurting a while back and I just wanted to finish the 11 and call it a day, that is what happened.  Even with the rain, it was a good run and it was nice to run with Cat and Elizabeth, we are pretty much the only ones left that started (other than Theo) running together 2 years ago.  Today, I wondered, and I imagine all distance runners do at some point, why am I out here doing this?  I’m not sure there is an answer to that, today the answer was because my friends are out here doing it with me and my legs need the miles!

*Note, my phone didn’t survive this run 😦  I’m now on the market for a new phone, but I’m not really sold on an iPhone 6 upgrade…decisions, decisions.

Sunday:  3 Miles (Pace 9:28)

Today I only wanted to run a mile, but I ran with my best friend John.  He is training for the upcoming Heritage 6k next week and wanted to run farther.  After the run yesterday, I really didn’t feel like it but once my legs loosened up, I knew I had 3 miles in me.  The pace was slow and that was fine with me, it let me go a bit further.  We picked up the pace the last mile and I took off in the last half mile, I just wanted to stretch my legs out.  It was a good end to week 2 of marathon training!

Total Miles:  31.7 

Week 2 Photo

Week 1 (6/15-6/21)

Marathon Training has begun!

Monday:  3 Miles (Pace 7:47)

The training plan recommends running slower than race pace.  I’m not sure if that means for all your runs or just your longer runs.  Today I decided to run negative splits for the 3 miles.  It was hot and humid, and I was glad to get it over with.

Tuesday:  5 miles (Pace 8:12)

Today was awful, this had to be one of the most humid days yet!  I ran downtown with Tin Roof Runners, I wanted to start off at a slower pace but my friends took off right out of the gate.  I forgot my Sweatgutr and sweat was pouring into my eyes and stinging horribly.  Every time I ran by a restaurant I looked to see if there was a napkin I could grab to wipe my forehead, no such luck.  The only thing that kept me going was knowing water was at the end!

Wednesday:  1 Mile (Pace 8:19)

I was really busy today and pretty dehydrated from Tuesday’s run.  I diverted from the training plan and got my mile in to keep the streak going!

Thursday:  3 Miles (Pace 8:09)

I wanted to run a more relaxed pace today, to get ready for my upcoming long’er’ run.  My quads were pretty sore and it was also suppose to be a hills day, but I planned to do some hills on Friday morning with November Project, so I just did a loop around my neighborhood.

Friday:  3.5 Miles (Pace 8:17)

Hill Repeats!  I did quarter mile hill repeats near my house, I didn’t make it to November Project.  I should have gone though, they run at 6:30am when it would have been much cooler.  I saw one other runner out, I think most people are running early morning or late evening when it is a little cooler.  My quads were a pretty sore after the run today!

Saturday:  7.1 Miles (Pace 9:14)

I moved my long’er’ run to today because I was going to be busy Sunday.  It was really humid, I wanted to follow the plan and get in 10 miles, but after 5 I knew that wasn’t going to be possible with the scorching heat and humidity.  I was running much slower than normal and just trying to get in the mileage.  When I knew quality miles weren’t going to happen anymore I decided to cut the run short.  I had an encounter with a driver who didn’t know the rules of the road in Mile 1 which quickened my pace more than I wanted early on.  (There will be a blog about the encounter)

Sunday:  1 Mile (Pace 9:02)

Mile legs were really sore after the first week, I used today as a shake out run to loosen up my quads.  In the plan it does say you can modify the runs if needed.  I don’t want to go to far off the plan, but today was one of the days I needed to, I just wanted to get a run in and keep the streak alive.

Total Miles: 23.6

IMG_5291 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

You can now follow me on Bloglovin

Through the Winter…end of the streak?

After setting a PR in early December it was clear winter was on it’s way.  I bought a new winter running shirt from Lululemon, made from their Rulu fabric, it felt really soft and when I used it for the first time I knew it would keep me warm even in the coldest of weather.

The year before there were about 8 of us that ran together all through the winter, it really helped to keep each other motivated and in shape for when spring arrived.  We became known as the ‘Core 8.’  This year the Core 8 wasn’t around, some had moved away, life changes didn’t allow them to run as much, and this winter seemed to be even colder than last so people seemed a bit more reluctant to run, even though the year before we had ran in 7 degree weather!  That being said, this winter I had a lot of solo runs, which I don’t mind but on some of the days it would have been nice to company.

Winter has arrived
Winter has arrived

The run group I run with on Tuesdays, Tin Roof Runners, continued to run through the winter, but the numbers dwindled.  (Sidenote:  Do you know there are only 3 words in the English language that begin with the letters ‘dw’, do you know the other two?)  I managed to keep the run streak alive, but it wasn’t easy.  I like to run when the sun is still up and with daylight being shorter during the winter, that meant I had to run at night sometimes, this year there seemed to be a few more storms than the year before.  On day #130 of the running streak we had a winter storm that left snow and ice, I was sliding all over the place trying to run.   I knew I had to do something so I wouldn’t fall, I went to City Sports in Harbor East and one of the people I run with sometimes recommended Yaktrax.  Yaktrax are basically crampons for runners, they worked great, didn’t change my stride, and I could barely tell I was wearing them on my shoes.

YakTrax
YakTrax
Great gripping power!
Great gripping power!

The rest of the winter continued and so did the run streak, pretty uneventful.  As the weather warmed up I started to incorporate some hill training in preparation for race season.  This year I had picked four races I wanted to do; Philadelphia Hot Chocolate 15k, Frederick Half Marathon, Baltimore 10-miler, and the Baltimore Marathon.   Though the Hot Chocolate 15k was a relatively flat course I was already looking past that to Frederick and some hills, hence the hill training.

Hills of Patterson Park
Hills of Patterson Park

In the beginning of March, I started to feel some pain in my right knee.  During the run streak I have had pain on and off in different areas of my legs from running so much, so I figured the knee pain would go away in a few days.  It didn’t it only got worse, it became very hard to start a run without limping or wincing with pain; it was time to make a doctor’s appointment.  I asked Sarah, who her Sports Medicine doctor was, she has had to deal with injuries before and I remember her telling me she had a really good doctor.  She recommend a doctor from Johns Hopkins, I made an appointment, but would have to wait a few days to see the doctor.  I really contemplated ending the streak because I didn’t want to jeopardize my race season.  I decided to cut back on the miles, run easy, and wait to see what the doctor said before making any decisions.

Trying anything for support
Trying anything for support

March 24th, after a physical exam and getting some x-rays I waited for the doctor to come back into the room and give me a diagnoses.  When she did, she told me I had Patellar Tendonitis, runner’s knee.  She said I would need to go to physical therapy twice a week for a few weeks and I should be alright.  She recommended the physical therapist that was right down the hall.  I asked about running the 15k on April 4th and she recommended talking to the Physical Therapist to get their opinion, but she did say I could keep running but stop if the pain became to much.  The earliest appointment I could get at the Physical Therapist was April 3rd.

April 3rd came and after an evaluation from the Physical Therapist, he told me I couldn’t race the next day, I pretty much figured that was coming so it wasn’t a huge disappointment.  He was worried it could do more damage and set me back, putting the run streak in jeopardy.  When I asked him about running everyday, he said I could still run, but no hills and I was limited to a mile a day for now.  I asked about the Frederick Half and if he thought I would be ready?  He said he thought so but he didn’t want to rush my recovery, so we needed to wait and see once the race was closer.  Over the next 6 weeks, I went to physical therapy twice a week and did exercises at home, hoping my knee would get better.  Several times I thought about ending the streak, in hopes to expedite my recovery, but I did not.  Each week the therapist said I could run a little further if it felt comfortable and the pain started subsiding around week 3.  By the end of week 6, the physical therapist gave me a clean bill of health and the okay to run the Frederick Half Marathon, which was in about a week.

Like new! (Yes, I realize this is my left knee)
Like new! (Yes, I realize this is my left knee)

My knee felt strong and ready to go, but I wasn’t sure if I was race ready.  My longest run since the beginning of March had been 7 miles and I only did that once.  I couldn’t do a long run now to see where I was at, it was to close to the race.  I would have to rely on my base of running and pace myself a little more than I may have if I hadn’t been injured.  I was really happy to be able to race and that I didn’t have to end the run streak!  My next challenge was in front of me…the Frederick Half Marathon…

How was your experience running last winter?  Have you had a running injury, what did you do?

-Veggie Fueled Runner

IMG_4661