Saturday, February 21, 2015

Napa Training Weeks 16 and 17... Taper Time

The infamous taper has started. It seems there's something about taper time that makes all runners restless. It's like you feel like you should cram a little more training in, yet you know that what's been done is done and all you can do is trust in your training and try to rest, eat right, and not do anything stupid.

So... trust in your training. I took everyone's advice and decided not to do any longer runs than the schedule dictated.

Rest. No problem there.

Eat right....well... that's tough. I'm finding myself falling off the good food wagon more and more lately. I've also come to the conclusion the scale at the fitness center MUST have broken over the weekend. Last week I was almost scared to get on the scale on Friday (the 13th) but did anyway and was relieved to see that it still read 124. On Wednesday, again, I was scared to get on after a weekend of bad eating... and it read 119. No way! I was alone in the locker room. I weighed myself three times. Then, I jumped up and down on the scale to see if I would weigh more. Nope, still 119. Does cold weather or the barometric pressure have an effect on how the scale weighs you? I haven't weighed this low since before I had kids. Plus, there is NO WAY I lost 5 lbs in less than a week. Today, I weighed myself again... and got 118. Ummm, I think the scale needs recalibrated or something because there is no way this is right. In any case, with one more week to go I just hope I'm not gaining weight!

So here's the summary...

Week 16
Sunday - Rest. Totally toast after my night shift.

Monday - 4 miles. Made friends with the dreadmill and did it at 8:41 pace.

Tuesday - Rest. I had to rearrange the run schedule to go to a funeral and didn't feel like running afterwards.

Wednesday - 8 miles. I wore my Garmin and hit the roads. Plan was to start easy then finish at marathon pace. I had the Garmin covered up under my jacket so all I could hear were the mile beeps. This is what happened...

I overshot the finish but filed away in my head that I was capable of a sub-8:00 mile after running 7 miles.

Thursday - 12 miles. Ran 9 easy on the hamster track then ran to the dreadmill and did my last 3 at 8:41 pace. My fitness center limits our treadmill time to 30 minutes so I really can't do any long runs on it. 4 miles is the longest I can go and I'm going over by almost 5 minutes when I do.

Friday - 1 mile. I was tired. I had a ton of stuff to do. I finally got to the fitness center but just didn't feel good when I started running and all I could think about was all the other stuff I had to do so I bagged it after a mile. I originally had 5 miles on the schedule.

Saturday - 7 miles. ValenTimes 10K plus a mile warm down. Maybe rest on Friday was good. I ran a 10K PR of 47:57.

Week 16 Total Miles: 32 miles

Week 17
Sunday - Rest.

Monday  - 4 miles. Easy run on the hamster track.

Tuesday - 6 miles. Again, an easy run... except my legs still felt way fatigued from the race on Saturday.

Wednesday - 4 miles. I'm still tired and having a wee bit of panic about it.

Thursday - 8 miles. Felt better but still ran all of it easy.

Friday - Rest. Got up at 4:30 am and spent the whole day at work then rushed home to get my daughter to cheer at the Center Grove vs. North Central basketball game - which turned out to be one of the best high school basketball games EVER. CG tossed in a 3-pointer at the buzzer to send the game into overtime after being 16 points down at the start of the 4th period and never leading the game, then won it in OT, beating the 3rd ranked 4A team in the state. It was crazy exciting. I also didn't get home until 10:30 pm. Talk about a long day!

Saturday - 4 miles. All done at 8:41 pace on the dreadmill.

Week 17 Total Miles: 26 miles

So this is it. One more week to go before my big race. Eat well, rest, and don't do anything stupid!

Saturday, February 14, 2015

ValenTimes 10K

Last year I ran a 5K PR (22:50) a week before the Derby Marathon. I plugged that number into the magical race predictor calculator and it gave me an average predicted marathon time of 3:39:21. Obviously I didn't run that time but it was eye opening to see the potential.

So here I am, two weeks from my goal marathon and the last road race before my marathon this year is a 10K. This year, I looked at the race predictor backwards. I put in a marathon time of 3:50:00 to see what kind of 10K time I needed to run to potentially run that time. It spit out a time of 49:39. My 10K PR was 49:19.

I still have this because I'm a sentimental packrat.

I ran this time 28 years ago. I thought then that it would be a beginning to competitive road racing but then life got in the way and I stopped racing. I went to college, med school, and finished a residency. I got married and had two kids. I've been a Girl Scout leader, dance instructor, and have carted my kids around to dance lessons, skating lessons, cross country meets, track meets, ice hockey games, dance competitions, soccer games, cheer practice, football games and basketball games. I used to glance at this plaque sitting in my basement and think that I would never run that fast again. 49:19 is 7:56 pace. No way I could hold that pace for 6.2 miles ever again...

Until today. I felt like I was capable of holding an 8:00 pace... and if I could do 8:00, why not push it a little and do 7:56? If I could PR I could prove to myself that I was capable of 3:50.

It was not the ideal morning for a race. It was cold - in the 20's - but what bothered me the most was how windy it was. That little voice inside my head was messing with me. It's windy today so it's OK if you don't PR...

I looked around at the start and started thinking though that there was a chance I could win the women's 10K race. Then we were off...

Mile 1 - 7:31. Too fast. Slow down! Why the heck do I always run my first mile too fast?

Mile 2 - 7:38. Better. We get to where the 5K and 10K runners split and I realize there's one woman ahead of me. I want to speed up to catch her but I won't be running my own race if I do. Pace yourself! She'll come back to you.

Mile 3 - 7:56. Just keep this pace. I peeked at my watch at 3.11 miles and saw 23:58. I remembered from the race predictor that the 5K time for a 3:50 marathon was 23:57. Just keep this pace!

Mile 4 - 8:03. Now we're running into the wind and I feel like I'm faltering... but I think I'm slowly gaining on the woman in front of me.

Mile 5 - 8:10. I almost gave up this mile. We were still running into the wind. The little voice was talking to me again. It's Ok. You ran some really good miles. You will finish in second place matter what your time is today. Second place is good enough. Then, three men caught up to me. I stayed with them for at least a quarter mile. It was much easier running in a pack and I saw that we were running an 8:00 pace. We ran through the 5 mile mark together before two of the guys pulled ahead of me and one fell back. Thanks guys. One more mile to go. I can still do this!

Mile 6 - 7:50. My Garmin was not exactly matching up with the mile markers on the course. Miles 1, 2, and 3 were all long on the course. 4 was pretty close, but then 5 and 6 were short compared to when my watch was beeping. In any case, I ran past mile 6 and the girl yelled out 46:00. I knew then that I was going to PR. I wasn't going to catch the woman in front of me (who turned out to be a 13 year old) but I ran my race and had my time.

Official time - 47:57 (7:43 pace)
PR by 1:22

I'll take it!

Monday, February 9, 2015

Napa Training Weeks 14 and 15... Hanging On

I think I have Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD). It's cold outside. It's gray. I think it either rains or sleets every weekend. All I want to do is curl up in bed and stay there. I'm hungry. I'm tired of oatmeal. I'm tired of bananas. I'm tired of chicken. Did I mention it's cold outside? I just feel exhausted.

The last two weeks have been a struggle. I thought it was smooth sailing after Charleston. I felt good during my recovery week but then it turned into a grind...

Week 14
Sunday - Rest

Monday - 10 miles. Originally I thought I had a pace run on the schedule and was dreading it but then discovered it was just a regular run. Hallelujah! I got it done on the hamster track.

Tuesday - Rest. Original plan was to run 20 miles but I had too much stuff to do at home, I was tired, and I just wasn't in the mood to run so I rearranged the schedule and took a rest day. Then I totally fell off the good food wagon. I just wanted comfort food. Meatloaf and green bean casserole. Then ice cream with hot fudge sauce and salted caramel peanuts... all stuff from my grocery shopping that week.

Wednesday - 5 miles. Hamster track again.

Thursday - 10 miles. Not in the mood to run but ground it out on the track then went to work.

Friday - 20 miles. Again, not thrilled about it but I hit the track early so I could get all my miles in before going to work. I had thought about doing the 10 on Friday and the 20 on Saturday but Saturday was my day off and I didn't want my run to suck up my entire morning. This turned out to be a great decision, mainly because I didn't get home from work until 4 am Saturday.

Saturday - Rest. I was toast after my shift at work. I was suppose to run 5 more miles but just couldn't do it.

Week 14 Total Miles: 45

Week 15
Sunday - Rest. It was raining. Surprise (insert sarcasm)

Monday - 5 miles. Yup, hamster tracked it.

Tuesday - 10 miles. So this was my pace run. It was 20 degrees with 15 mph winds. I tried SO hard to not run the early miles fast but still blew through the first mile.
Mile 1 - 8:20. Ugh. I have GOT to slow down!
Mile 2 - 8:33. Slow down, slow down...
Mile 3 - 8:40. Better. I hit the turn around and the wind hit me full force.
Mile 4 - 8:42. 4 and 5 were the uphill into the wind miles. I swear if it's this windy in Napa I'm running behind somebody!
Mile 5 - 8:47
Mile 6 - 8:37. Made the turn around and flew downhill with the wind at my back again, then realized I was running 7:55 pace. SLOW DOWN!
Mile 7 - 8:40
Mile 8 - 8:46. I hit the turn around and the wind just took my breath away again.
Mile 9 - 9:04
Mile 10 - I was DONE with the wind after mile 9. Just totally done. Ended up walk/jogging home.
Average pace for 9 miles was 8:41.

Wednesday - 20 miles. Last 20 miler of this training cycle. I had kids to cart around in the evening and it was suppose to snow so I went out at 8 am to get the run in. Thankfully, it was sunny and not as windy as Tuesday. I kept my Garmin covered up and just listened for the beeps for my mile markers. I ran 10 miles out from my house and ended up somewhere in the northern part of the next county, running past some really nice countryside scenery and scared up two turkeys. It was a nice easy run. I picked up my pace the last mile to see what I could run it in... and ran mile 20 in 8:49.

Glad I got the run in early. It got nasty in the late afternoon then started snowing.

Thursday - Rest. Active recovery at work all day.

Friday - 10 miles. Easy run on the hamster track and... drumroll... I MADE MY GOAL RACE WEIGHT!! Woohoo. Now I just can't gain any weight for 3 more weeks.

Saturday - 5 miles. OMG! The sun came out! I worked the night shift Friday night so I slept in Saturday morning. When I woke up the sun was shining. I wasn't sure if I was going to run on Saturday as I was sure I'd be dead tired after my shift but the sun lured me outside and I got 5 easy miles in.

Week 15 Total Miles: 50

So now it's down to 3 more weeks. I'm not sure what I'm going to do mileage-wise this week. The training program calls for 34 miles, then down to 26 after that, then it's marathon week. I feel like I need to run more than 34 miles this week then do a two week taper. I'll have to see how I feel.

Friday, February 6, 2015

Making Weight

I weighed in at my goal race weight today!

It's the highlight of my week. It's been a tough 2 weeks. I plan to post the training updates after my run tomorrow but it's just been hard. My goal was to lose 10 pounds since, theoretically, that's suppose to take 15 minutes off your marathon time with no change in your level of fitness. Obviously I've been working on improving my level of fitness too but making goal marathon weight is huge for me.

Ten pounds. It doesn't sound that hard. But for someone like me, it's incredibly hard. I started out at 134 lbs. To lose 10 lbs, I had to lose 7.5% of my body weight. It took me two and a half months. You see shows like The Biggest Loser where people lose double digit pounds every week. Let's say someone starts out at 300 lbs. They just have to lose 3% of their weight to lose 10 lbs. Plus, besides running, my other hobbies include baking/cooking and grocery shopping... really not the past times you want when you are trying to lose weight. I can bake up a 1000 calorie dessert in no time flat... and oh the deals! Kroger had their Mega sale going on the last two weeks so I've been grocery shopping almost every day. I seriously would have gone every day if I had a bigger freezer. My hollow legged children have been loving it.

It's funny what will motivate people to lose weight. I didn't try to lose weight for my wedding. I don't go on diets for Spring Break. I have in my life watched what I ate when my clothes started fitting a bit snug since I hate shopping for new clothes but I'm not one to religiously step on a scale. I think that these last couple months have been the first time in a looooong time that I actually consciously made an effort to lose weight... all for a better marathon time.

I felt like a high school wrestler trying to make weight. Now that I have, I just have to keep it off for another 3 weeks. I have done a long run of 20 miles or more once a week for 5 of the last 6 weeks. This week was my last 20 miler. The mileage will go down after that so I'll really have to be careful... but for today, I'm HERE.

Sunday, January 25, 2015

Napa Training Weeks 12 and 13... Progress

Week 12 I felt like I turned some kind of corner... like all the miles finally are coming together. I had a GREAT week! I then spent this past week worrying that I had overdone it, peaked too early. Now I just need to settle down and grind out my last 5 weeks. Here's the summary...

Week 12
Sunday - 13 miles. It was sleeting. I ran with a headband to keep my ears warm and a baseball cap over that to keep the sleet out of my eyes and felt absolutely ridiculous. I told myself this was the last crappy weather run I had to run this week.

Monday - Rest. Spent the day at work.

Tuesday - 5 miles... on the hamster track.

Wednesday - 5 miles... on the hamster track.

Thursday - Rest. Flew to Charleston.

Friday - 15.4 miles. "Pace" run except that I had to guess on my pace and distance since my Garmin malfunctioned. I was only suppose to run 13.

Saturday - 26.4 miles. Charleston Marathon... except the course ended up officially being 0.1918 miles long. We were all given new official times. If you missed my race post, it's HERE. My new official time ended up being less than a minute off my PR.


It still blows my mind. 9 months ago I was absolutely dying the last 6 miles of the Derby Marathon and now I've run less than a minute off that time on what felt like an "easy" run. What was different? I am better trained? Probably... but I felt ready last year. Did I fuel better? Most definitely. Did I pace better? Probably not. I ran with a pace group last year too, albeit we started at a faster pace and I couldn't maintain it, but it's not like I started crazy fast. In any case I am feeling better about Napa all the time.

Week 12 Total Miles: almost 65

Week 13
Sunday - Rest. Spent the day at work.

Monday - Rest. Another day at work.

Tuesday - 6 miles. I was a bit nervous my legs would be tired and sore so I hit the hamster track.. and my legs felt fine.

Wednesday - 6 miles. The Garmin lives again. I recharged it and cleared the memory, then took it outside and it worked perfectly fine. I have no idea what was wrong with it in Charleston. So this was suppose to be another easy run and I generally don't wear a watch on my easy days but I wanted to see if the Garmin was working so I wore it. Then I found out that my "easy" pace for 6 miles was 9:12. Maybe I'm getting faster after all.

Thursday - 5 miles. Hamster tracked it at night after working all day. I was so tired I fell asleep on the couch waiting on the kids to get ready for bed.

Friday - 2 miles. The two runs I had left for the week were a 5 miler and a 13 miler. I decided to do 13 on Friday while the kids were at school so I'd have more time to do stuff on Saturday. My legs decided not to cooperate. One mile into my run my left hamstring started pulling. After the miles I put in in Week 12, I was nervous all week that I had overdone it and had been pleasantly surprised thus far. When my leg started hurting I thought about just running 5 but then decided not to push my luck and just turned around at the mile mark and ran 2. Maybe I'm being overly cautious but getting injured over 3 miles just didn't seem worth it.

Saturday - 13 miles. Hamster tracked it in case my leg gave me problems but it was fine. I'm beginning to wonder if running in the cold makes my hamstring seize up more or maybe it's just in my head cause I don't like running in the cold.

Week 13 Total Miles: 32

So now my recovery week is over. I've got 3 more weeks of hard training before a 2 week taper. I still feel like I have a lot of things to work on pace wise and nutrition wise. As of yesterday, I'm 2 pounds away from race weight but I'm freakin' starving and I still can't eat enough carbs in a day while keeping my calories down. If you know of a low calorie high carb food, please tell me!

Sunday, January 18, 2015

Charleston Marathon

I finally had some time this evening to look at my official results and the whole surreality of this weekend is setting in...

I just ran a marathon as a training run, a day after a hard 15.4 mile run. I never felt tired. Nothing hurt. I had to restrain myself from running too fast. I ran my second fastest time ever, just 3:08 off my PR. I got on a plane less than 6 hours after the race, came home, and went to work this morning like any other day. Now that I've had a chance to reflect, it all seems so surreal. Did I dream this? No, I have a medal and photos and internet results. It really happened!

Backtracking, LOTS of interesting stuff happened in the two days I was in Charleston.

Thursday, my Garmin quit working properly. I was suppose to do a 13 mile pace run. I was excited to be running in shorts and a T-shirt. My Garmin showed a green satellite but would not track any distance or pace. I tried restarting it three times then gave up and decided to use it as a stopwatch. Plan was to run 65 minutes out and then run back. This way I'd be guaranteed to have run at least 13 miles.

I stayed with my niece in North Charleston. I told her I just needed a road that I could run on that would go on for at least 6.5 miles. I was told to turn left out of her driveway, left at the end of her road at the duck pond, then take the next right and right and I would be on one of the main roads in town that would take me into downtown Charleston. I ran as instructed and ran all the way downtown. Once I got downtown though, it got more treacherous as there were more people on the sidewalks and cars pulling out of narrow alleyways. I had to keep stopping and finally said "screw it" at 63 minutes and turned around.

The run back was harder. It got up to almost 60 degrees and I ran into a headwind. I got back to the duck pond, hung a left, then hung a right into the road that T-d into the pond. Where was her house? I stopped my Garmin at 2:16 and started walking. I was at the pond. Obviously I just turned down the wrong street. Her house had to be close.

NOTE TO SELF: When leaving on a run from someone else's house in an unfamiliar city note the address of where you started.

I hadn't done this. I had no idea of her street address or the name of the street she lived on. Of course I didn't have a phone with me either because I don't run with a phone. Don't panic. Don't panic. Her house has to be on one of these other streets by the duck pond.

It was while I was walking that a young man on a bicycle rode past me. He then turned around and came back to me, got off the bike, and started walking with me making conversation. Basically the whole encounter started with, "Do you work at a Chinese restaurant?" "No, I don't." Some other small talk, then he asks me out on a date. Ummm... I don't think so. "No, I'm married." Plus I'm fairly certain I'm old enough to be his mother. After that statement he got on his bike and rode off.

Now where the heck is my niece's house?!! Then I realized the pond is an oval. Her road T-d into the short side of the oval rather than the long side. I had to hang another left and then a right to get back to her house. I did this and there it was. Phew!

After she came home we drove the route I had run. Ended up it was actually 7.7 miles to my turnaround point. So 15.4 miles total for the day. A bit longer than 13 but then again, I don't think I ran 8:45 pace for all those miles either. I ran a good effort though.

Later that evening I also had a chance to meet up with Melani, one of my online Sole Sisters. It was great to be able to finally meet her in person. We decided to grab some food at a restaurant near her hotel downtown.

Easier said than done! There were lots of restaurants...  seafood, steaks, burgers, pub food... Mediterranean food... Lebanese food we didn't recognize... all things that would be great post-marathon but not before. We walked and walked and walked until we were all the way down by the waterfront. We finally asked a hostess if she knew of anywhere that served pasta. Joe Pasta was the answer. Joe Pasta is located about 3 short blocks from Melani's hotel. Somehow we missed the only place downtown that served pasta. By now we were both starving, our feet were tired from walking, we were miles from her hotel (or at least it felt that way!) and both of us had a marathon to run in the morning.

We hailed a bicycle powered rickshaw taxi and got a ride back to Joe Pasta. Food at last!

Melani and me

Saturday morning my niece, her friend Patti, and I all got dropped off at the starting line where we ran into Melani and her friend Tracey... and my stupid Garmin would not work again! It did the same thing as the day before. It showed the time but no distance. I decided though that this was not a big deal because all I had to do was finish 26.2 miles at a nice easy pace. This was my easy long run for the week and, especially after running longer than intended the day before, I did not want to do anything to my legs.

Plan was to run with the 4:30 pace group. That's a 10:18 pace. I'd been running closer to a 10:30 pace on my long runs recently but I thought 10:15 was doable, especially since this would be a supported run with aid stations. There was an aid station every 2 miles. I planned to eat a GU every 4 miles up to mile 20 and drink Gatorade at the aid stations in between to practice my fueling.

At the starting line all of us realized this was a little race. There were less than a 1000 marathoners and a little over 2500 half-marathoners. We started at the same time. No corrals. We just lined up in the street by whatever pace runner you thought was appropriate.

Melani, Tracey and I started together right by the 4:30 pace runner. Beth was running the half and Patti was running slower so they started somewhere behind me. The first couple miles were congested as usual. I ran a nice easy pace and I kept looking for the 4:30 pacer who had been right next to me but then I thought got a little behind me. At the 2 mile mark my watch read 22 minutes. Hmmm... I wanted to run easy but this was a little too slow. I picked it up a little. I got separated from Melani and Tracey at this point.

Somewhere between miles 4 and 5 I saw someone ahead of me with a blue pace sign. Maybe that was the 4:30 pacer? I caught up with them and realized it was the 4:15 pacer. Then I heard from the runners around me that all of them felt the mile markers were off. Everyone was reading the course to be anywhere from 0.3 to 0.5 miles long - so probably why I thought I was slow at the 2 mile mark. This was throwing the pacers off too. They said they were trying to run 9:43 pace but several miles later I heard that they were up to 30 seconds off at times.

OK, new plan. Stay with these guys for as long as I feel good but absolutely DO NOT run faster then them! I felt great but I knew that I was not going to get a BQ today so this was NOT the day to push it and try to PR and blow out my legs 6 weeks before my goal marathon. DON'T DO IT!!!

I fueled exactly as planned. I felt like I was constantly squeezing a gel in my mouth and the miles went by pretty quickly. I was surprised by how good I still felt. At mile 22 the two pacers looked at me and another guy and said "Well, I guess you two are it." We were the only ones left in the pace group. They said if we felt good we should go on ahead. I then had to tell them this was just a training run and I had to stay with them so I wouldn't do anything stupid.

At mile 24 the pacers said we were actually a minute ahead of pace. At mile 25 one of the pacers decided he had to hit the port-a-potty. Now what? Rather than stand there and wait, I proceeded on. Run easy. Don't do anything stupid. No kick. No nothing. Just run across the finish line with a smile.

4:13:37. Seconded fastest time ever, the day after running over 15 miles, and it felt easy. I know I could have PR'd yesterday if I had pushed it but this was not the time to push things. I am SO glad I came to Charleston! The course was perfect. The weather was perfect. This was just the confidence booster I needed. Plus, if I still have this Boston bug next year then this would be the course for a BQ attempt because it's flat and FAST!

Beth (my niece) and me

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Napa Training Week 11... On the Edge

Admittedly, mileage-wise, I've made myself a pretty aggressive training program this time around... and last week I found myself leaning over the edge of overtraining.

I ran 54 miles in Week 10. I had 58 miles planned for Week 11. I learned that sometimes you just have to step back.

Sunday - Rest.

Monday - 5 miles. Nice easy run.

Tuesday - 12 miles. The weather is getting nasty and I hamster tracked it. Still a nice easy run.

Wednesday - 20 miles. I had 24 on the schedule. The air temperature was almost zero outside. I hit the hamster track again with 4 gels. Plan was to fuel up every 5 miles. Miles 1-15 were nice and easy. I got a little bored. I picked up the pace a bit. 16, 17, and 18 were great. At 19 my left hamstring started pulling and throbbing a little. By 20 I was getting hot poker jabs of pain in my hamstring which put a cord of fear in me. My left glute and my lower back were killing me too. I stopped after 20. I've come too far this training cycle to risk injury. Admittedly, I felt pretty defeated going home without those last 4 miles.

Thursday - Rest. I spent the day taking my daughter to the orthodontist, scheduled a massage, then spent a couple hours at work in the evening, all the while hoping my legs would recover well.

Friday - Unplanned rest day. I had planned to run 12 miles. My legs still felt fatigued when I woke up. The next week was suppose to be a drop down week but I switched things around so it will be another big week. I felt like I could run 12 miles, debated running 12 miles, but in the end decided to step back and give myself another rest day.

Saturday - 5 miles. I woke up with my legs feeling fine. Big sign of relief. I originally planned to get my run in and then get my massage. It's still freakin' COLD outside and for some reason my fitness center was closed. I seriously thought about finding a friend with a treadmill or even getting a Y membership (they were advertising no registration fees until 1/19/15) so I could run indoors. I hemmed and hawed until it was time for my massage. 60 minutes with Katie. Not your relaxing rub and buff massage. 60 minutes with Katie is 60 minutes of towel biting torture with her elbows and god-knows-what-else digging into your backside... but she really knows how to unknot your legs and glutes and will work on exactly what you want. She did my left hamstring, glute, and shoulder. Just what I wanted. Didn't even touch the right side. Once the torture session was over, I bit the bullet and ran outside.

Week 11 Total Miles: 42
3 good days, 1 "meh" day, 1 unplanned rest day, 2 rest days

I will be the first to admit I am a fair weather runner. For YEARS I would start running every year while we were on Spring Break in Florida - so the first week in April, then stop running sometime in October. I turned into a year round runner when I joined my fitness center where I could run on an indoor track.

So I switched around my training plan a bit because I couldn't take the cold weather anymore. Rather than do a drop down week in Week 12, then run my own Goofy - 13 mile pace run followed by a 26 mile long run - in Week 13, I decided to do the 13 and 26-milers in Week 12. Why? Because I found a warmer place to run. My niece lives in Charleston, SC (MUCH warmer than Indy right now!) The Charleston Marathon is January 17th. It sounded like the perfect supported long run. So I'll be off to Charleston at the end of Week 12 to do both my pace run and my long run. I won't be running the marathon for time but it will be my long run for the week. Plus, I'm hoping to meet up with one of my online Sole Sisters and catch up with my niece!