~20 Hot & Humid Miles~

Another EARLY morning, but so glad I got out there when I did because it was a HOT one!

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Energize and some oatmeal for breakfast before today’s long run.

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We are actually under a heat advisory, Β so I honestly didn’t expect too much from this run. That and the fact that I ran 17 miles just 3 DAYS AGO!

Yes, normally today would be a speed work day, but I had to switch my running schedule up because I am traveling to New Orleans for the Beachbody Coach Summit tomorrow through Sunday! I didn’t want to miss my long run, especially since it was a 20 miler. Those 20 milers are SO IMPORTANT! So, I knew I had to get it in before I left for New Orleans!

This is NOTΒ the type of weather a runner wants to see at 6:12 am! Ugh!

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There was a beautiful sunrise this morning and some cloud cover though…

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…which always helps!

Before today’s 20 miler…

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…and after 20 miles…

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Can you tell that it was humid?! πŸ™‚ I was soaked!

Right down to my feet…

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20 miles in the books…

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I was so happy for the cloud cover I got throughout the run…

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…as it definitely helped to be able to finish out the last few miles. Today’s run was tough, especially the last 6 miles. It was just so hot by the end of today’s run…

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I did have some encouragement from people around my neighborhood that always see me out running. Hearing that they admire my determination, wishing me good luck and telling me great job after a tough run, definitely helps and makes it all worth it!

The GOAL for today’s run was 20 miles @ 9:12!Β 

I didn’t think it was going to be possible between the heat and running 17 miles 3 days ago, but…

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…I FREAKING DID IT! It took me until the last mile to actually hit it, but I did it! πŸ™‚

Here are my splits for today’s run…

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THREE HOURS of running! Wow! It’s been a long time since I have done that!

After a solo 1 mile cool down walk, it was time to walk the pups, but I needed to change first!

And…who doesn’t walk their dogs while eating a mini bagel and drinking hydrate?

I walked Dasha first, since it was getting so warm…

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Then it was Dakota’s turn…

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And the temperature when we got done walking…

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Too dang HOT!

I was so happy to head back inside in the A/C to drink my recover, stretch and watch some Rachel Ray before a shower.

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Then it was FINALLY time for a second breakfast…

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I love breakfast food after a long run!

Day 10 Β β€” COMPLETE!Β 

Next run is Sunday…due to travel and Coach Summit, but I will still be working out!

Thank you for reading and following my journey to the Chicago and Kansas City Marathons!

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Sunrise – 17 Miles – Dog Problems

4 AM! Yep, that’s what time I was up this morning! And on a SATURDAY!

When you are up before the sun, energize is a MUST!

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I definitely look more awake than I really was! πŸ™‚ I needed to be up early enough to eat breakfast and give it time to settle before heading out for today’s long run.

Breakfast was…

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Also it takes me awhile to get around, especially for long runs…

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Those band-aids and body glide are life savers! They don’t eliminate all of my chaffing, but it definitely helps to lessen it.

Then I needed to get my water and fuel ready as well.

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I forgot how different it is running with a Camelbak on. Definitely took me a few miles to get used to it and kind of forget about it being there. I had the Gu gel before I left. Then I ended up eating the power bites and drinking my hydrate and water throughout the run. Imagine that…having water and fuel with you on a long run actually helps! πŸ˜‰

I was impressed with myself this morning because I was out the door by 6 am for my warm-up walk. It didn’t feel TOO bad out there, at least while I was walking and before the sun got above the trees!

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One plus to being up so early…

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…a beautiful sunrise!

A BEFORE my run photo!

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And 17 miles LATER

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…bugs and all! πŸ˜‰

End of run weather…

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…felt SO much warmer than that, especially in the SUN!

Today’s run was a tough one. I am not sure why, but I really just think it is the heat and humidity that is making it harder than it should be!

And the hills…

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…I only did the bigger hill twice today too! The rest aren’t big hills, but I run them A LOT over the course of 17 miles!

I did start out slower today, which I thought would help and it did, but not as much as it should have.

GOAL for today’s run was 17 miles @ 8:57.Β 

Even though it was tough today, I am happy that I was able to finish pretty strong and under goal pace with 17 miles @ 8:54!

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I had to keep reminding myself that I have done this before and that I could do it! It might not have been pretty, but I GOT IT DONE!

Cooled down with an EXTRA long cool down walk. The first mile was solo. Then I went back home and the hubby and I took the pups for their 0.80 mile walk. They sure do love their morning walk!

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Then it was FINALLY time to drink my recover, but I changed it up a little bit today.

 

Orange recover with a banana, Vegan Vanilla Shakeology, mixed with water and ice! Definitely hit the spot after a hot run!Β Drank it while I did some much needed stretching, or at least tried! πŸ™‚

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Well…I thought I put that towel there for me…but I guess not! This girl cracks me up!

I sat down to stretch and THIS happened…

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And, yep, that’s blood on my sock AGAIN!

I did have a couple of issues between miles 9 and 10 with my feet and/or shoes and wasn’t sure I was going to be able to finish the 17 miles.

The first one was THIS one again, even with a band-aid!

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It didn’t look too bad until I took off the band-aid…

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Yep…it hurts! Not sure why it is happening, but I am going to try loosening the top of my shoe a little bit more next time because it is only doing it on my long runs when my feet really swell up! And only on my left foot!

The other foot issue was with my right foot…

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…it’s a little bruised there right where the ankle joint is. Again, I think it was because my shoes were too tight once my feet started to swell. I stopped and loosened them up, which helped. I will start with them looser next time and hope that helps.

So all things considered, I have to be happy that I was still able to come in at under goal pace for today’s 17 miles.

After a shower, which stung (thank you chaffing!) and some food, it was nap time…

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…yes, I was laying on the floor because Dakota WAS hogging the whole couch. As soon as I got down on the floor, she came and joined me. I think it is safe to say that she is MY DOG! πŸ™‚ She is attached to my hip 90% of the time!

Day 9 & Week 14/16 Β β€” COMPLETE!Β 

Next run is Tuesday and it’s another BIG ONE!

Thank you for reading and following my journey to the Chicago and Kansas City Marathons!

Believe YOU Can & YOU Will!

believe

SO TRUE!

I doubt myself all the time, especially after a bad run. The speed work days are tough on me because I am having a hard time hitting my time goals, but I know what I am doing is making me stronger.

I NEED to stop doubting myself and trust the process of what I AM doing! I have to remember…

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I know the hard work will pay off in October, but it’s hard to see that far ahead!

With all that being said, today’s run ended up being really good, even though I didn’t believe it would be.

I got up at 6 am and had a small snack and some energize before heading out for my run.

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I needed to get out pretty early this morning because it was going to be a HOT one here today!

One of the reasons why I didn’t hold out much hope for this morning’s run was because of this…

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That humidity definitely makes breathing and running difficult, but I pushed through it and just took it one mile at a time.

GOAL for today’s run was:

~ 1 mile easy

~ 5 miles @ 7:53

~ 1 mile easy

How today’s run ACTUALLY went:

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Ended up with:

~ 1 mile easy

~ 5 miles @ 7:52! πŸ™‚

~ 1 mile easy

This run definitely gets a thumbs up…

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…and honestly, felt MUCH easier, even with the heat and humidity, than the 2.51 miles at about the same pace on the treadmill. I am NOT saying that it was easy, but EASIER! πŸ˜‰ The last 1.5 miles were tough!

Here’s what it looked like when I was done…

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I have to admit it was beautiful out, despite the heat and humidity…

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Love that bright, blue sky and the sun shining through the trees!

Also, sweat in your eyes, HURTS! Especially when you wear contacts!

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Finished my cool down walk with some hydrate, after I got the sweat out of my eyes…

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I love that our neighborhood HOA decorated for the 4th of July with flags at the end of everyone’s driveway.

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Finished my cool down walk, then headed inside to get the pups for their walk.

Took Dasha first, since it was getting hot and she is so much older. She didn’t want her picture taken today.

Take 1…

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Take two…

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Better…at least you can see her sweet face! πŸ™‚

Then it was Dakota’s turn. She didn’t want to cooperate for pictures either!

Take 1…

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Take 2…closer πŸ™‚

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Third time’s the charm…

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It warmed up quick this morning…

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Their short walks tired them out today!

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Then it was time for The Price Is Right and recover while I stretched…

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And last, but not least…breakfast!

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I am LOVING these overnight oats! Makes for a quick and easy breakfast, especially on run days!

Day 8 Β β€” COMPLETE!Β 

Next run is Thursday!

  • Do you prefer to run when it is warmer or cooler?
  • Any other The Price is Right watchers out there?Β 

Thank you for reading and following my journey to the Chicago and Kansas City Marathons!

Happy 4th of July

Wishing everyone a Happy & Safe 4th of July!

Dasha feeling patriotic…

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Dakota feeling patriotic…

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It was a rough morning for me. I couldn’t get out of bed this morning, as I wasn’t feeling all that well. Darn allergies and sinuses! The pollen has been HORRIBLE here lately. Then on top of that it was raining and storming here, which never makes it easy to get out of bed!

By the time I was ready to workout, it had stopped raining, but it didn’t look very promising out there still…

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It took me until this afternoon to FINALLY get my run in. Thank you energize…

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Unfortunately, it didn’t go as planned either! I was SUPPOSED to do speed work today, but due to the weather I ended up doing my run inside on this…

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…and we ALL know how I feel about running on the treadmill.

Today’s run was supposed to be a backwards ladder with 200 meter recovery in between for a total of 2.51 miles running. Since I was on the treadmill and wasn’t feeling well, I decided to just run the 2.51 miles as fast as I could without a break.

I ended up finishing the 2.51 miles in 19:43 for a 7:51 pace…

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…as you can tell, that was enough for me for today! I was DONE! I am happy that I at least got the miles in, even if they weren’t exactly as planned, because honestly I didn’t feel like doing ANY! So, I am proud of myself for at least doing something!

I began with 15 minutes of walking for a warm-up and did 15 minutes walking for a cool down as well.

Then I went upstairs and enjoyed my recover while I did some stretching and foam rolling…

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I don’t like foam rolling because it HURTS, but it makes everything feel so much better later! πŸ™‚

After a walk with the pups and a shower, it was time to refuel with a patriotic Shakeology!

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Happy 4th of July!

Day 7 β€” COMPLETE! (Sort of!)Β 

Next run is Thursday!

Thank you for reading and following my journey to the Chicago and Kansas City Marathons!

Run, Eat, Nap, & Eat Some More

I MUST go to bed earlier on Friday nights, so I can get up and get out for my long runs earlier! You would think I would know this by now, but I guess not.

While it wasn’t overly hot today, it would definitely have helped to be out and running at least an hour earlier!

It was a beautiful morning for a long run…

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…but it was about 10 degrees warmer at the end of today’s run compared to last weekend.

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Ugh! That 10 degrees in complete sun makes a HUGE difference.

Before I get into the details of today’s run, let’s start at the beginning.

I set my alarm for 5:30 am today and even though I didn’t want to get up, I did! The first couple of weeks of getting up super early on Saturday mornings is tough, but once I get used to it (and go to bed earlier) it won’t be so bad! πŸ™‚

Started my day with some water, energize, and oatmeal before today’s run…

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If it isn’t broke, don’t fix it, right?!

I just think that I might need to add a little something more OR fuel during my run because I was getting hungry about half way through today’s run.

I have a hard time fueling during my long runs, but I know I need to and that it would have definitely helped for today’s run towards the end. I did have a gel before I started my run, but should have had at least one more half-way through. Got to work on the fueling part!

It’s HARD to forget YOUR GOALS when you wear them on your head! πŸ™‚

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On the schedule for today’s run was 15 miles at an 8:57 pace.

GOAL pace achieved, but it wasn’t easy!

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I ended up with an 8:51 pace, which I am definitely happy with today. This run was tough compared to last week’s.

However, that 8:51 pace includes a bathroom and water break during mile 6, hence the increase in time ANDΒ a water break during mile 13! It’s getting that time in my training where I need to carry my Camelbak, which would probably help my fueling issue as well, since I would have water with me.

I am very happy with how consistent my miles AFTER mile 4 were! I knew those early fast miles were going to hurt me later. 😦 I also ran a lot of HILLS throughout these 15 miles, and it doesn’t matter how big or small they are when you are running them every lap and a half or so. Ouch!

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Not a huge elevation gain…504 feet over the course of 15 miles, but it still hurt! Got the bigger hill in twice and the second biggest hill in once today.

I was SO happy to be finished today! That sun was HOT!

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After a 1 mile cool down walk with the hubby, some hydrate and water…I was feeling better, but it felt even better to go inside and take off my SHOES!

I got my recover and TRIEDΒ to stretch, but…

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…somebody missed me while I was gone and thought I was sitting on the floor for her! πŸ˜‰ And how could I say, no!

I did FINALLY get my stretching in…

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…which felt AMAZING!

After a much needed shower, I was craving french fries and salt, so THIS happened…

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I really try to keep it healthy, even after my long runs, but sometimes you just need to treat yourself.Β The Greek Pasta was definitely a healthier option and this was only part of it! Delicious too!

It’s difficult to eat back 1,508 clean and healthy calories. THAT would be a LOT of food and I already feel like that’s all I have done today besides run and take a NAP!

Yes, I got my nap in today, which is why I am so late posting this! πŸ™‚

Day 6 & Week 15/16 Β β€” COMPLETE!Β 

Next run is Tuesday!

  • What do you use to fuel during your long runs?
  • Do you take a nap after your long runs?

Thank you for reading and following my journey to the Chicago and Kansas City Marathons!

Tempo Treadmill Thursday

A LATE run today due to thunderstorms and pouring rain this morning. The thunderstorms woke me up around 2:45 this morning and I couldn’t get back to sleep. It took me an hour to get back to sleep, which made it difficult to get up and get going!

Thank goodness for energize! This stuff is liquid GOLD!

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Thanks to Mother Nature, my run today was completed on the treadmill! I have a love/hate relationship with my treadmill. I am happy that I have the option to run on it, especially during marathon training, when the weather doesn’t like to cooperation with my running schedule. πŸ˜‰ But…I find running on the treadmill to be harder than running outside on the open road!

I tend to get bored running on the treadmill and need something to keep me from watching the miles go by…slowly…no matter how fast I am running! I usually watch TV or a movie. Today, I chose a movie…

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This was only the second time I have watched this movie and it definitely helped to make the time go by faster. Funny movie!

Today’s run was a tempo run…

GOAL…

1 mile easy

5 miles @ 8:12

1 mile easy

How it ACTUALLY went…

1 mile @ 9:27

5 miles @ 8:05 — Splits were 8:05, 8:01, 8:10, 8:06, 8:03

1 mile @ 9:18

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7 miles with 5 of those out of my treadmill comfort zone pace was NOT EASY, but I got it done and at a 1% incline!

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This isn’t my longest treadmill run, but it was definitely long enough for today. Treadmill runs are mentally tough for me! My longest was a few years ago during marathon training and ended up being a 16 miler! Not ready to do THAT again anytime soon!

After my cool down walk I did my 15 minutes of stretching.

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Stretching definitely helps to keep me injury free. Yes, it takes extra time, but it helps me to recover and my muscles feel so much better too!

Enjoyed my recover drink blended with a banana afterwards.

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There was a break in the weather after I was done running, of course, so I headed outside with each of the pups for a short walk.

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They sure do love their walks!

I don’t think we will be able to get out again later for our evening walk, as the storms are starting to roll back in. 😦

Day 5 Β β€” COMPLETE!Β 

Next run is Saturday and the weather is looking good!

  • Treadmill Runner or Outside Runner?
  • Do you stretch after your runs?

Thank you for reading and following my journey to the Chicago and Kansas City Marathons!

P.S. Share a picture of your fur babies with me! πŸ™‚

Two Words I Hate…

When it comes to running, there are two words that I hate…

Speed & Work

I know speed work is good for me, but right now I am not liking it. It’s hard for me, and even more so right now because I am doing it around the neighborhood where it isn’t flat like a track would be. I guess if I take that into consideration, I am not doing too bad at it. I am just not where I WOULD LIKE to be! πŸ™‚

I changed up my breakfast this morning before today’s run…

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…but I don’t think that had anything to do with my performance. I believe it was from my eating habits over the weekend. I am back on track with my nutrition as of yesterday and should definitely feel a difference for my runs later this week.

The weather was PERFECT for running again this morning, even though I got out there a little later than I was hoping to. I got started with my warm-up walk around 8:25 am.

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I wasn’t feeling great when my alarm went off at 6 am, so I ended up sleeping for about another 30 minutes. Maybe that had something to do with how my run went as well. :/

While my speed work didn’t go as I had hoped that it would, I still got it done and gave it everything that I had in me today.

Today’s speed work GOAL was 4 x 800 between 3:17 & 3:23 with 2 minute recovery after each repeat.

The hills around the neighborhood…

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and tired legs definitely made for a tougher run this morning, but here’s what I ended up with for today’s speed work…

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My first 2 800’s were faster than I thought and closer to my goal, but I didn’t hit my goal range at all today. 😦 That is very frustrating to me, but I know that I still have lots of time to work on it.

I should have been between 6:34 – 6:46 for my pace, but ended up with a 6:59 pace! Only having 2 minutes of recovery in between each repeat was tough as well, but I wanted to follow the program!

For my cool down, I did a nice and easy 1 mile run and then finished it out walking.

So I gave today’s workout a sideways thumbs up, because it could have been worse and I still did it! I was smiling though because it was done! πŸ™‚

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It was another beautiful morning…

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Came back after today’s speed work and grabbed my recover drink before walking the pups! My legs and body needed it! I don’t know how I ever survived without it!

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Day 4 Β β€” COMPLETE!Β 

Next run is Thursday!

  • Do you enjoy speed work?

Thank you for reading and following my journey to the Chicago and Kansas City Marathons!

Neighborhood Half

Marathon training means no more sleeping in on Saturday’s! 😦

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I don’t like getting up early, but I like getting my run done early enough in the day, so I can still get other things done.

I need to make sure I have time to drink my energize…

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and eat at least a little something before I go, especially for long runs like today!

The banana did well for me on Thursday, so that’s what I went with again today, and no issues again. Might need to add a little something more before next weekend’s long run though.

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I also like being able to beat the heat and some of the direct sun.

Although that wasn’t as much of an issue for today’s run…

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It felt AMAZING out there this morning! It was so nice not having it already 70 plus degrees by 7 am!

Today’s GOAL was 13 miles at an 8:40 pace. I couldn’t ONLY run 13 miles. I had to make it an actual half-marathon. πŸ™‚

It was a REALLY good run today. I actually didn’t worry too much about the pace, as an 8:40 was feeling easy after speed and tempo work this week. I even added in the bigger hill in the neighborhood twice. It doesn’t look that bad, but it sneaks up on you, especially when you run it during miles 5 and 10/11.

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It’s not easy running 13.1 miles around your neighborhood, especially when the biggest loop you have is about 2 miles.

That being said, here is how my half-marathon went this morning…

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13.1 mile at an 8:29 pace! πŸ™‚

So happy with how this run felt! I didn’t fuel or hydrate during it, mostly because it was so much cooler than the weather I had been running in, but I also didn’t need the fuel.

Oh, funny story about why mile 12 was so much faster! Some how I was thinking that I was running mile 13 and only had a little bit more to go, so I picked up the pace a little bit. Then when my watch beeped for the mile, I looked down and it told me I still had another mile! πŸ™‚ I just laughed and was like, oops! I knew I still had enough in me to finish out the 13.1 miles, but I think I will pay better attention from now on! πŸ˜‰

All finished…

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And what a beautiful morning for a run…

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A little bit longer of a cool down walk today while I drank my hydrate…

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It was just SO nice out…

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Ended up with a little surprise though when I got home and took of my shoes, which is ALWAYS the first thing I do when I get home. I hate having my shoes on any longer than I need too! πŸ™‚

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Thankfully, it wasn’t as bad as it looked…

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Finished today’s workout with some much needed recover and stretching!

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Day 3 & Week 16/16 β€” COMPLETE!Β 

Next run is Tuesday!

  • What’s your favorite distance to run? Why?
    • Marathon 26.2, I love the challenge!
  • What’s the first thing you do when you get home from a run?
    • Take off my shoes!
  • What do you eat before a long run?
    • Right now a banana and I drink my energize, but looking for other/more ideas, which is why I am asking! πŸ˜‰

Thank you for reading and following my journey to the Chicago and Kansas City Marathons!

Tempo Run

I am so HAPPY with today’s run!

I am still trying to figure out what to eat before these harder runs. I don’t have as much time after I eat to let it settle because it is just getting too warm too fast. I felt MUCH better after a small snack before today’s run…

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Decided to try 12 oz of water, a banana, and energize mixed with 8 oz of water before I ran today. I gave myself about 30 minutes afterwards before I went out to run and no issues! Wahoo! πŸ™‚

It’s another HOT one here in KC today, so I made sure to get out earlier this morning. It was already in the 70’s by 7:30 this morning and humid! So glad that a cool front is headed our way tomorrow.

On the schedule today was my first tempo run. I like tempo runs so much better than speed work!

GOAL for today was…

~ 2 miles easy

~ 2 miles between 7:23 & 7:35Β 

~ 2 miles easy

It was nice to only focus on 2 miles at a time, instead of thinking that I needed to run 6 miles!

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When my run gets a thumbs up, you know it was a good one! πŸ™‚

How it actually went…

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~ 2 miles easy @ 8:47 pace

~ 2 miles between 7:23 & 7:35 — SO CLOSE to that 7:23 —Β 7:24 pace

~ 2 miles easy @ 8:27 pace

Overall pace was an 8:13 for 6 miles.

I am actually very surprised by my EASYΒ miles, but after a 7:24 pace for the middle 2 miles, those last 2 miles felt like I was crawling.

After my 1/2 mile cool down walk, it was time to re-hydrate and walk the pups. I decided to walk the easy one first, aka Dasha, so I could drink my hydrate along the way.

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I can’t believe she actually was looking at the camera! πŸ™‚

Then it was time to walk our new baby, Dakota, aka our wild child! She is doing so much better though and actually enjoys her walks now, as you can tell from her smile.

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Looking for trouble…

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We even walked through a sprinkler! Boy, did that feel good! That sun was HOT!

A great tempo run today!

Day 2 β€” COMPLETE!Β 

Next run is Saturday…long run day!

Thank you for reading and following my journey to the Chicago and Kansas City Marathons!

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Day 1 of Marathon Training!

IT’S HERE…

Today was the official start of my marathon training!Β IMG_6906Okay, so I wasn’t really THAT excited about it! Honestly, I was so nervous for today’s run that I dreamed about it last night.

I am actually training for 2 marathons in October that are about 2 weeks apart…FullSizeRender (12)The BIG DAYS are October 8th and October 21st! πŸ™‚

I am using the same training plan for these 2 marathons that I used for the Berlin Marathon, where I ran a PERSONAL BEST — 3:50:28.

I swear by this book…IMG_0380 (1)You only run 3 days a week, which is one thing that I really love about it. While I love running and training for a marathon, I don’t want it to take away from everything else. The plans in this book allow you to train at a high level, recover, and have a life outside of training as well.

Today’s run didn’t go quite as I planned. First of all, I got out to run MUCHΒ later than I wanted to and it was already warming up. My stomach didn’t want to cooperate, so I ended up walking the pups first to let it settle some more after breakfast.Β IMG_0334

On the schedule today was SPEED WORK!Β Speed work is not my favorite and I don’t have a track to run on. So today’s workout was done around my neighborhood…

IMG_0382While the elevation isn’t high, there is not much around the neighborhood that is flat like a track would be.

Everything considered…stomach cramps before and during the workout, warm and sunny weather conditions, and no track to run on, today’s workout turned out better than I was expecting.

My GOALΒ for today’s workout was 3 x 1600 (1 mile) between 6:51 and 7:02 with 400 (1/4 mile) recover in between.

I was really hoping to be closer to the 6:51 end of my range, but this is what I ended up with…Β IMG_0381It wasn’t easy, but the fact that I kept the 3 mile repeats close to the 7:02 end makes me happy. I believe with better running conditions and feeling better that I would have been able to push myself more and get closer to that 6:51 pace. I will have a chance to redeem myself in a few weeks! πŸ™‚

This picture was before I knew exactly what my splits were for today’s run…IMG_0345 (1)Feeling a little bit better about today’s run now that I have had time to reflect on it.

Finished today’s workout with a nice and easy 15 minute cool down walk and some hydrate!Β IMG_0360 (1)Tasted SOΒ good after 3 tough, sweaty miles in the hot sun!

Day 1 — COMPLETE!Β 

Thank you for reading and following my journey to the Chicago and Kansas City Marathons!