Monday, April 30, 2012

Kings Mountain Marathon, Complete!

Kings Mountain Marathon, NC! 26.2 complete! April 21, 2012. What an awesome 6 months of training and the girls I trained with in my Galloway group have become a much closer group to me. The 13.1 with Donna in Jacksonville, Fl was such an amazing experience, I will post more about it shortly. It's only April and I have my first marathon under my belt! I already have my sights set on my next marathon in October. I have picture and stories to share, but now it's time for bed. I can't believe tomorrow is May 1st. Where has the time gone?

Friday, December 30, 2011

2011 is Drawing to a Close

I am watching "Spirit of the Marathon" on Netflix right now and it is just the boost I needed. I ran my October 29th 1/2 marathon in Greenville, SC and felt great. My buddy Mel trained and ran right along side me. The ankle really held up and I was quite pleased. This was by far the most well organized and exciting race I have done to date. The best part was meeting my running hero Jeff Galloway the night before when my husband went to a dinner with me and waited while I got to chat with Jeff for a short bit. What a terrific man. He makes all the time in the world to really talk to people. The following Saturday I joined a Galloway training group and have met a terrific group of men and woman. We have been training for the 26.2 with Donna in Jacksonville, FL (I am running the half). This group has given me the missing sense of community I had been longing for and has helped me to become a fast runner. I've made several new friends and feel terrific going into this New Year with a good deal of training already under my belt. This next year will definitely bring a marathon! Happy New Year! Happy Running! 26.2 I see you!

Saturday, September 24, 2011

First Day of Fall

It's September, and the crisp weather feels great. I sprained my ankle July 26th while training for my October 29th marathon. I had to wear a "space boot" for a few weeks and start a physical therapy regimen. It has now been almost two months and I have been off the trail almost this whole time. I just went for my first run this morning with my group and it felt awesome. We completed just over 2 1/2 miles and I was so happy to be out this morning. I have had a few nice walks with the dog these past two Saturday's, but I am anxious to see how my October race will go. I have decided to downgrade to the 1.2 marathon, as I have been out of training for too long. I'll schedule another one for several months out and get back into training. So nice to be back!

Sunday, April 10, 2011


On April 2, 2011, I completed my first half marathon training run ever! Mel, Brandon, and I had an awesome morning on Swamp Rabbit Trail and we finished with a killer up hill to the coffee shop. Danielle and Jenny joined us for the last 4 miles, and we were all laughing at ourselves when it was time to leave the table and go home...there was a lot of moaning to accompany our stiffness. We wore it like a trophy!

To date I have lost 8lbs! I have always exercised, but nothing has ever made the weight come off. I was so excited to see 161lbs on the scale this morning. I just might actually see the 150s soon. I never thought that would be possible.

I have also been pleasantly surprised at how much my running ability has changed. I have been running 4.5 miles every Thursday with a friend and working up to 0 walk breaks to change up the distance run/walk training we are using for the Marathon. I still need small walk breaks sometimes, and take them, but it is so much easier now.

The high school where I work hosted a 5K race yesterday (April 9, 2011) to support two wonderful women and their fight against breast cancer. Christie, one of the two amazing women, is a runner! She completed 6 miles before the race, and another 6 after. What a rock star!

This is Jessica, my Thursday running buddy, and I at the finish line.

It was hot and muggy, and I ran the whole thing just to see if I could! It felt amazing. I finished in 38 minutes, and then discovered the distance ended up being 3.5 miles instead of that's even better. I won a $10 restaurant gift certificate in a raffle and had a free massage too!

I was looking through some old photos and came across this one from the summer of 2004.

I was 25 and about 145lbs. That's a 16lb difference from my current weight. What a difference in my face! But, I am really seeing some changes just in the 8lbs I have lost. I would love to reach this weight again :-) That's my current goal. I've never set a weight goal before, ever. So, here's to it!

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Let the Torture Begin!

Kings Mountain Marathon, NC! 26.2 complete! April 21, 2012. What an awesome 6 months of training and the girls I trained with in my Galloway group have become a much closer group to me. The 13.1 with Donna in Jacksonville, Fl was such an amazing experience, I will post more about it shortly. It's only April and I have my first marathon under my belt! I already have my sights set on my next marathon in October. I have picture and stories to share, but now it's time for bed. I can't believe tomorrow is May 1st. Where has the time gone?

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Beautiful Weekend Weather!

Stephen and I just returned from a beautiful walk downtown Greenville with our dog Charlie. The weather this weekend has just been gorgeous and has really helped the winter blues to start going away. This brisk walk to the dog park and back helped get my workout week off to a good start. Thanks Stephen for your Sunday morning motivation and energy! Even Charlie seemed to need some real outdoor time. He had great fun romping around with the other dogs.

After the race...
I completed the Green Valley Road Race 8K yesterday and was so proud of Margie and Danielle for completing their 2nd ever race! Mel and Brandon really pushed themselves and finished well ahead! A nice surprise was to see Jessica at the race too!

The course was not well marked at all, so we ended up completing somewhere around 5.3-5.5 miles instead of 5. Jessica ended up doing an extra 2 miles! She was running in the same race and they sent her a different way than us!?? :-( It was weird, but I still had a nice time.

I ended up downtown later in the afternoon because it had finally warmed up from 22 to 53 degrees! Much better than the freezing morning temp! And every family and jogger in Greenville seemed to have the same idea as me; be outside! I ended up briskly walking another 2.9 miles for a total of around 8 miles for the day.

Now that I am tracking my training load points each week, I knew I needed more to reach my goal for the week, so this extra walk got me there. I want to run the 10k I have planned for March 5th with good effort. To do this, I need to be completing between 800 to 1,000 points per week. Last week I logged a total of 831pts and this week was 925! Yeah! :-) By training this way, I can really see how much effort I am exerting and I am very mindful about the effort I put into each workout. I didn't do this before and this is really helpful. I am still using Jeff Galloway's training run distance schedule for the 1/2 marathon (April 30th) and I am doing pretty well with my distance, but I am getting to the point now that I am going to have to step it up even more during the weeks to come. Joining Jessica on Thursday after school for speed/endurance runs will definitely help me here. Now I have had incredible energy this week; I just pray this continues through eating better and getting a good nights sleep.

Thanks to Lauren Runs' latest blog post, I have an idea of how to meet my long run goals and still continue with my Saturday group planned runs when our distance goals are not the same. So this coming Saturday, I am scheduled to train for 8 miles, but we are currently run/walking our upcoming 10k road course. I think I will attempt to go out earlier than normal and run 2 miles before I meet with the group, so that I can log my 8 miles for the day. I wouldn't miss running with my friends on Saturday morning for the world! This is my saving grace and motivation!!! However, the following Saturday calls for a shorter run of 3 miles, so should I meet up with them part way through their run? Hmmm. Reading other blogs and joining's 13.1 blog group has helped a ton. Any suggestions would be welcome.

Here's to a great week of warm weather! Boy is it needed. I've had some crappy motivation. It's the people around me completing goals and getting out there that keeps me going, like Mel Edwards and her super amazing goal-setting! Thanks everyone.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

8K On the Horizon

These past two weeks have been exhilarating, challenging, frustrating, painful, and so so satisfying!

Twelve days ago, on a Friday night, I hit the pool at the Y with a vengeance. The swim workout posted was for 3,250 yards and I knew I could do it. I made it to 2700 yards and got kicked out of the pool because the Y was closing. Booo! I didn't pay attention to the earlier closing hour. Oh well, 2700 yards! Woohoo!

But, I had to stop a few times to knead out an on setting charlie horse. This ended up plaguing me over the next week in the form of a severely tight and tender right calf muscle. It may not have helped that my Saturday group run consisted of a new 10K route. I tried to rest it for 2 days, but I felt the need to walk it out and see if that would make it feel better. I did that and it felt good (1 hour walk on the treadmill). I ended up running 4 miles on the treadmill the next night because I was both itching to get moving and moving just felt better. After talking to a Y Wellness trainer, I decided to take the next day off and rub it with bio freeze. That was a "duh" moment for me. I use that stuff on my back whenever I am having pain. Needless to say, resting, exercising, and gelling my calf all helped, but gosh was it painful to the touch.

The first Saturday after our 5K race took us to new heights. We mapped out our new 10K road race route for March 5th. This was a tough day for everyone as we were not all feeling our best. The next Saturday was much better. A much more positive attitude was buzzing for the group. I needed the run and the company because I had had a bad morning. I had to meet the group at Coffee to a Tea after they had completed the first mile and then I was good to go. It was such a beautiful, drizzly crisp morning. Lunch at the coffee shop after was the highlight :-).

On another note, I started using my heart rate monitor as a training tool. I've had it for months, and used it sometimes, but I never knew what a powerful tool it could be! Mel runs with one and I would sometimes hear her say she was working in a certain zone and meeting her 85% target hear rate. I was so curious about it that I pulled my HRM manual out and discovered a plethora of information. Oh man, was it frustrating and infuriating when I first tried following a sample workout and did a few of my normal ones, only to discover I was not working hard enough to keep my heart rate in my 85% target zone! I just didn't believe the numbers. I just decided to not stare at it and not worry about it. That was too frustrating. Low and behold, once I took to the streets and was running at my normal rate, my heart rate was cooperating too. I started keeping a chart logging roughtly how many minutes I was working in each of my heart rate zones (there are 5). There is a simple math formula to calculate minutes worked vs heart rate zone to yield a "training load." Timex's (my HRM brand) training chart suggests to complete a training load of 800-1000 points in a week to be able to complete a 10K, 700-1000 to maintain your current weight, and much more for that marathon I want to run this year. Once I felt comfortable changing up my running routine with my monitor, I really knew I had some powerful information in my hands.

I am an excel junkie and love charts and organization, so I converted my paper chart to an electronic one with pretty formulas that will give me immediate feedback after each workout. I am now able to walk, bike, run, and do all sorts of cardio workouts, enter my information, and visually see what my training load yielded for each workout and what my current total for the week is. It's awesome to compare one workout to another and see the numbers. Last weeks total was 831 points for may training load, so I was quite happy. So far this week, I am at 541.

I am running an 8K this Saturday and am quite looking forward to it. Danielle, Margie, and I will run it together. Mel and Brandon are going to go for their best time possible, as they both need qualifying times for placement in the Disney Marathon next January! Go Mel and Brandon Go!

I am not too worried about time on this one because I had a pretty hard run after work today with my friend Jessica. She is a runner! No 1/1 pace on this run. We had awesome weather and completed 4.6 miles through the park in 59 minutes. This included a potty break and several short walking breaks. My buns were feeling those hills. Jessica can do this with her hands tied and set a pace slower than she normally runs, but it kept me in my 85-90% heart rate zone for 54 minutes!! A few times I got over the 90% mark, so I cut it back there. I don't think I would have pushed myself that hard if I had gone by myself. So glad you decided to come out after all Jessica! We are going to make this a regular thing on Thursday's after work. I am really looking forward to becoming a faster runner and changing up my run/walk routine just for something different.

Here we come 8K!