Monday, November 7, 2011

Back to the drawing board

Marine corps Marathon 2011 marathon number 4 completed! As most of you know, this certainly was not my best run ever, but...I had a wonderful time. I got to complete the last half of the race with my best buddy Jamie! We even crossed the finish line holding hands. True story. The course was spectacular and the weather great. But best of all, I got to share with my team mates and close friends some of whom ran thier very first marathon (niki, chris, richard) and others whom rocked solid pr's (jason, Brinson, sherry, Teresa l, teresa d). Most of all, I am proud of everyone for the grit it took to even begin this 4 month journey.

As for me, I know where I went wrong. I didnt follow a training plan like I should have. I ran daily, on a whim, with no attention to adequate recovery. And I failed to do what I know works- yasso 800s. So, over the next few weeks leading up to Boston training I plan to get my legs back. That means sticking to a plan. For those of
You interested, I highly recommend Hal higdoon. He has a book called the marathon which I
Have found highly inspirational and motivational over mt past 4.5 years of running. (thanks Amy for introducing me to it).

I am thinking very strongly about Louisville 2011 just need my iron buddy Jamie to commit too! Everyone encourage her!!

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

I am an IRONMAN!!!

Epic-that pretty much sums up how i feel about this entire journey. If I have spoken with you, I am sure I have let you know that I had a spectacular race and could not have possibly been more pleased with the outcome. I have so many thoughts running through my head and am not sure I can adequately sum them up in one post. So several may be to follow.

First, I want to say how amazing it was to spend the entire weekend with many of my closest friends and training partners. Laying, lounging, laughing, stressing, sleeping (sort of), and hugging all of you in such close quarters couldnt have been more perfect. I started this journey with you all and finished it with you all. So for those of you thinking about embarking on the Iron journey...this is the way to go. Who better to understand what you are feeling and going through than those you have trained with, laughed with, and yes, cried with over the past 6 months? I wouldnt have had it any other way. So...thank you Jamie, Allan, Kathy, Tony, Jason, Gretchen, and Scott for the journey of a lifetime. You, my sweet friends and encouragers,  made my weekend.

I guess i should start by saying how awesome the trip was from the moment we arrived in Louisville. I think i acted like a kid on Christmas. Check in was an incredible experience. From the moment they put the bracelet on our hands to the first siting of Mike Reiley to the crossing of the finish line, we were treated like Ironmen. One thing I noticed, as soon as you donned the blue bracelet, every other person wearing the bracelet felt the need to look you up from head to toe sizing up your potential race abilities. And admittedly, we did it too. Fun things throughout the weekend included Sully's (thanks bob and IAMTRI) and the underpants run. Where else is it perfectly acceptable to run a bit under 2 miles in your underwear? Only in Lou before the Ironman :) check out our pictures, they are phenomenal.

Race day-wow. One of the most moving moments for me was when the cannon went off for the pro's to enter the water. I had the privilege and joy of thanking and hugging all of my dear training partners and friends as they too got ready to race. My favorite picture I have seen thus far is of all of us jumping in the water at the same time. We started the journey together and we were going to finish it together. So yes, I would say it was off to a perfect start.

I had an incredible swim time for me. I made it successfully out of the water in an hour and twenty minutes and four seconds. I felt great the entire time. No cramps and little fatigue. Much faster than I originally hoped to swim. If my siting were a bit better, I think i could have swam even faster. None the less, I was thrilled. I even got to run into Allan in the water-just like warrior's, but minus the duck poop.  When I got out of the water, I was dizzy and had a left leg cramp. Took a few steps, but was able to run to T1. What I didnt expect was the overwhelming generosity and kindness of the race volunteers. They were beyond accommodating and helped me get through transitions smoothly. I am telling you, IM knows how to put on a good race and make sure you get what you pay for.

As most of you know, cycling is not my strong suite, especially with rollers. However, on raceday all the stars aligned for me and I rode well for me. Never once in the 112 miles did I unclip or leave the saddle (probably my proudest moment of the race). Beautiful weather. I also did well with hydration and nutrition. So by the time I was ready to run, I felt strong and ready. Dont get me wrong, I have never been so glad to get off the bike. But all in all, I would say it was a good ride.

Running is my favorite part. And rightfully so, I had a great run. Despite quads that were: shot to hell. It is said that in the marathon portion of IM you will run an hour slower than typical marathon. My marathon PR is 3:38 and IM marathon was 4:38. So, I would say that this is a dead on prediction. Although my legs hurt and I was exhasuted, there was never a moment where I thought I wouldnt or couldnt finish. I can truly say I enjoyed every single minute of it.

Coming into fourth street live with the lights and hundreds upon hundreds of people screaming and cheering for you was epic. I had the biggest smile on my face and had enough energy to scream..."Mike Reiley....LET ME HEAR IT!!!!" I am still in shock that yes, I am an Ironman. Although finishing was awesome, the best part still was hugging all my IRON friends and know that they too, met their goals. I am so proud of you guys. And yes, I firmly belief in the Ironman motto...anything is possible. As tired as I was, and exhausted, my first thoughts were "when do we do this again?" So, I think it safe to say, if anyone wants to embark on this journey again next year...count me in. I have a PR to beat!!

Monday, August 22, 2011

6 days out.

First and foremost, thank you all for the words of encouragement and hugs. So today, thanks to facebook, it is has fully hit me that this is happening. soon. For almost a year now, i have followed the official IRONMAN site on fb. I have watched as they have talked about other IM events. Today, the first post about Louisville appeared. Wow. Seriously, could the next six days slow down just a bit? Yesterday, I had a headache. That doesnt happen to me! Now is not the time for this to happen. Grr. On a lighter note, literally and figuratively speaking, I am trying to decide between racing my wheel set or the roval's (thanks steve p :) ) although, you will be missed and i still wish you were sharing this experience with us. I am torn between racing a wheel set I am comfortable with or a more aero set. I guess tonight will be the determining factor. Sigh. Breathe in, Breathe out.

I am going to offer up my sincerest apologies ahead of time for being distracted, tearful, and a bit moody over the next week. Do not take it personally. It is the single biggest thing I have ever done in my life and I want to do it well. So any advice, encouragement, or ice cream thrown my way is always greatly appreciated. More so than my words could ever express.

Big shout out to Piney Flats Bike and Fitness for taking care of my bike and helping me get stragihtened out. You guys rock. I still fell like one of the luckiest people in the world to be a part of the running and cycling community that I am. I couldn't ask for better training partners and friends.  I owe you all lots of hugs and trips to menchies.

I keep refering back to Adam Goucher's advice to Kara on the day she raced Boston- "Race confident, calm, and free." His blog about her racing experience rocked-as did her post race blog. Way to keep it classy Goucher's- you all are a true class act.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

10 days...and counting.

"It is not a successful climb unless you enjoy the journey." ~Dan Benson

I have enjoyed my journey to say the least. Tonight, I am thankful Jamie Williams whom rode with me and let me talk. Good advice, from a good friend. How I would have made this journey without her I do not know. Things I learned tonight: female brand of dez nuts is slightly uncomfortable. I did not enjoy the "warming/cooling" sensation. These things should come with a warning! Thankfully, I had the insight to try it tonight before IM. I could have seen that being a potentially dangerous 112 mile ride. Or uncomfortable at least. :) Oh...and Jill Kearns, we missed you! I am slightly jealous that you are going on a cruise, but cant wait to hear all about it! come home soon!

Taper mode is really quite discerning. We only had an hour ride to do today and I felt lazy.Worst part is, I still want to eat my arm off. Shouldnt I be wanting to eat less, not more? I am already stressing about this being over. Thankfully, I have three new goals 1. Marine Corps Marathon (MCM) 2. Train with Dustin Mohr @ Get Mohr Fit 3. And cycle cross! all of which I am very excited about :)

Lastly, big shout out to my bff Jamie Mains. Happy birthday buddy!!!! I had fun with you tonight and enjoyed our talk. You are special. Love you. Mean it.

6 am swim comes early. Thank you Glenn for being my constant alarm clock, even though I often hit snooze :)

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

T minus 11 days

Today called for a 45 min run + 15 i missed from last night. I had a nice comfortable run with Jamie Mains and Brinson in downtown Johnson City. Thanks again friends for running with me and sticking it out. You all rock. Shout out to Varinka, Rachel, and Brian (maybe?). Good to see you all and thanks for the words of encouragement. This whole process seems surreal. I cant believe it is almost here!!!

They say that you get depressed when this is all said and done. I can see it. It has consumed my life for almost 6 months. Thankfully, I have two big goals set for me in the upcoming next couple of months. On October 30, I will be running the Marine Corps Marathon and shooting for a new BQ time as well as running for No greater sacrifice in memory of my friend Ben White.  Today I also bought a new cross bike!!! Masi CXR with 105. woo hoo! I like new challenges. So bring on fall sports!!! Hopefully, I will try to get some decent sleep over the next few days.

Thanks again for the support!!! <3

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

12 days and counting

Tonight, my dear training partners Alan, Kathy, Jamie, Jason, Gretchen, Scott, and myself got a nice long swim in. We completed 2.3 miles. Shew. Exhausting. But...we swam great. I actually felt pretty comfortable. Don't get me wrong, I was tired at the end and ready to be out of the water. But all in all, felt good. Two things I learned tonight-i was hungry a mile into swim (will carry a gel in IM) and dizzy when getting out of the water. I think I will take my time in T1. Jason and I got a 3.5 mile run in after. Have I mentioned that this nice cool weather in the evenings makes me all giddy inside?????? I cant wait for fall.

I Will...
I will be rested~I will be strong~I will be excited~I will be confident as I hit the water~I will have smooth transitions~I will pace myself~I will eat~I will drink~I will sweat~I will not run out of fuel~I will stay loose and relaxed~I will take each hill one at a time~I will run a steady and consistent marathon~I will think of my family~I will remember all the hard work I have done to prepare for this day~I will not break down~I will look up and smile~I will not worry~I will not be alone~I will conquer the challenges I will face throughout the day~I will have courage~I will be proud of my accomplishments~I will encourage those around me~I will think positively~I will remember to take it one mile at a time~I will challenge myself~I will give it my all~I will enjoy the day~I will remember the day~I will finish 140.6 with a smile.~ I will be an IRONMAN

Ford Louisville Ironman August 28, 2011

Monday, August 15, 2011

Almost time

It has officially been forever since I updated this. What can I say? Ironman training took over my life. Clearly, so much has happened since my last post. Countless hours in the pool and at Warriors swimming in the duck poo lake. Yes friends, duck poo. I have pedaled more miles than i ever dreamed possible. Jamie and I finally completed our first 100 mile ride! it was a great riding day for us. I think that might have been one of my favorite accomplishments to date! Thankfully, the past few weeks have been great running weather. I have found my love for running again with this approaching fall weather.

Rather than spend this blog talking about the ups and downs of the past few months of training, i want to start by thanking people, personally, whom have supported me along the way (in no particular order :) )-

Jamie Williams- My Ironman faithful training partner and friend. Wow, what a blessing to have met you and the friendship we have formed over the past 6 months. I cannot wait to hug you and cry with you when we are finished and holding our medals!!! I couldnt have done this without you. You are a wonderful friend and person. And my rock through these past few months.

Tony Williams-Thank you for sharing Jamie with me over the past few months. and the countless miles you rode with us. Had it not been for your words of wisdom and coaching, i would still be spinning without getting anywhere. I appreciate your help more than words can ever express.

Jason Lewis-You are ultimately responsible for me being here. Even though I know you dont have facebook and will only get wind of this from someone else telling you...Thank you for believing in me, supporting me, picking me up when i was down, and most of all being my best friend. You are stronger than you give yourself credit for. When i found out that you too had broken your wrists, my heart was sad for you, but...I knew you, and knew it wouldnt stop you for a minute. So here is to qualifying for Kona. Go big or go home...broken wrists and all :)

Jamie Mains- I love you sweet friend. You have encouraged me every step along the way, when i thought i couldnt run anymore, you cheered me on. You are the ultimate running partner. and my partner in crime. Thanks for dragging me through many hot sweaty miles early in the am. and late at night. You believe in me even when i havent believed in myself. "that's what friends are for..." :) <3 u bestie

Jill Hayter (and David)- What a joy and blessing it has been training with you all over the past several months. I could go on and on about how much i love you and am glad to be a part of your life. Thank you for pedaling through the past 6 months with me. And ALWAYS being encouragers.  There is not a time I could feel down or unsure when you are around. that is a gift, and I appreciate you sharing it with me. Thank you for being such a wonderful friend and such a big fan. And to answer your question, should you choose to embarq on this journey...I will join u

To my foot Rx Running family (Allison, Steve, Chris, Terry, Sherry, Teresa, Debi,  Hannah, Ben, Tom, Linda, Jason S., Brinson, niki and everyone else) Thank you thank you thank you!!! Every mile i have ran over the past 6 months has been with one of you all or more by my side. Words of gratitude will never be enough. As the next few weeks come to a conclusion, I look forward to starting my next journey with you all...Fall marathon training. here is to long runs on the creeper followed by stops at the port a pottys and trips to wendy's. Hoo Rah!

My cycling friends (Melissa, Varinka, Spencer, Dave, Rachel, Kathy, Alan, Scott, and Gretchen)- as you all know, the bike has been my biggest obstacle to over come. Thank you all for pedaling through it with me. I am a runner, through and through. but...I have grown to love my bicycle equally as much. thanks to you all for sharing your passion and enthusiasm with me.

I am sure there are so many more of you I have forgotten to add on here. Considering it is nearly midnight, please forgive me. I will try and chronicle my thoughts/feelings over the next few days on here. and please please please follow myself, Jamie, Alan, Scott, Gretchen, and Jason at on raceday! let us hear it!

Monday, April 25, 2011

Blog Slacker

I am as bad as I originally thought I would be at blogging. It has been over a month. So, the cliff notes version of my training will be as follows: 

Swimming: I am progressing right along to where I think I should be. My  biggest problem is failing to go to the Monday class. I need an accountability partner! Monday's are the days we work on technique, and I still need all the help I can get! Typically, Monday's have been the scheduled rest day in my program and I find it very difficult to get up and go at 6 am! I am going to change my rest day in the upcoming weeks. Maybe that will aid in me getting up and going...

Cycling: I guess I am coming along. As I knew it would be, this is still my greatest struggle. I fight with all I have to hang on to the wheel. Yet, still loose it. Jason tries to remind me that I am new to the sport and this is my first real season on a bike. Go figure, I would pick this year to do an Ironman. I have been taught to spin a high cadence, but every time i do, i drop the wheel. Aghh!!! I am working on it though. I have had a bike fit thanks to Ronnie, and I feel so much more comfortable on my bike! If you haven't had one of these and plan on spending a significant amount of time in the saddle, I would strongly recommend getting one. This weekend, I am riding a 50 mile benefit ride. I am hoping that I will average 15 mph for the whole ride. To those of you that are experienced, that seems like nothing. But for me, it will be a huge gain to hold my Ironman pace for a long ride. Here is to hoping!

Running: Wow, this part of my life has changed drastically. I went from running 50-60 mile weeks to 25-30 mile weeks. And, my times have dropped dramatically. I now average about a 9 min long run. Don't get me wrong, I know that is respectable, but i am used to running for speed. In the past, a long run would have been 830-845. So, I am trying to get used to my new pace and enjoy the run. I am now only running about four days a week. Program calls for 2 one hour runs, a 30 min run, a 15 min run, and a 1 1/2 hour run. Typically, I count Tuesday Foot Rx speed work as one of my one hour runs. The other is dedicated to the Thursday night Foot Rx group run. The shorter two runs are followed after cycling, concluding with the longer run on the weekend. Although, as Debi would say "My body is tired and my legs are toast, I am going to go out and give this run my most!" I can say I am doing that. Running less has increased my love for the sport all the more! Now, I cant wait to hit the pavement. :)

I have also completed my first sprint TRI of the season coming out with a second age group placement! I was very pleased to place, but disappointed in my performance. The swim I completed in 8:51 (51 seconds slower than I would have liked), with a swim-bike transition of 4 min. That is terrible!! i should have been out of transition in approx 1:30!! The bike I averaged about 16 (and for the most part, I was pleased). The run on the other hand...ugh. I did it in 2530. I felt like my legs were cement! But, it was an awesome experience and I cant wait to do it again!

Until the next post- "Race confident, calm, and free."~Adam Goucher, as said to Kara Goucher as she prepared to run Boston 2011!

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Bring On Spring!

It has officially been forever since I posted here. So I will try to make my active endeavors as short and sweet as possible. Suprisingly, I actually ran well at the Disney Princess Half. Offical time of 1:45.09. Pretty pleased. Especially considering my weekly mileage has dropped drastically and I have felt my runs are not that quality over that past month and a half. There are countless stories to tell from this trip. Despite the no sleep, delayed flights, and random hotel knockings, we had a good time. I felt like a kid all over again especially since I havent been to Disney World since I was a kid. After race results were posted, I did get to see myself running out of Cinderella's castle. I offically have the worst running side ever! Looking at myself, I am extremely suprised I can run as fast as I can. Guess Jason wasnt just picking on me, I really do run funny. I got Jason a GoPro for Valentine's Day. I have a feeling it is going to come in handy for me as well.

On to Ironman-now that the half is out of the way, I think I have decided not to do a spring marthon and focus solely on becoming a better cyclist (or a cyclist at all) and training effectively for the ironman. Long few weeks ahead. But now that I am healthy (at least for now) I am ready to hit this full on. Bring on spring and warm weather and longer daylight hours! Here is to happy training!

I just found out that I got into the Honey Hive Program (Honey Stinger). Woo Hoo for being a sponsored athlete by the best tasting products there are! (yes, i called myself sponsored, because technically I am :)). No, I am not getting loads of free gear and products, but I am getting a nice discount on the best tasting energy all natural products there are. As many of you know, I hate hate hate all energy gels, chews, etc. At least until I tried Honey Stinger products. I could seriously eat everything they make like candy. And it is good for you! I can testify that thier products rock. Before the race, I had the mint chocolate protein bar and a few smoothie energy chews. Yum! About mile 8 I had a ginsing honey gel. It tasted great and gave me that extra push to the finish line for a big PR! (First one in the half in a year!) Please please please go try thier products. I cant say enough good things!!

If anyone is up for a ride this weekend give me a shout. (or run-will likely run chasing snakes practice run on sat) happy thursday all!

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Boston Athletic Organization Announces Changes

So...BAA (Boston Athletic Assosiation) announces new standards. To sum it up-from September 24, 2010 until Boston 2012, race qualifying times remain the same. However, you will be allowed to register in waves. They faster you are, the quicker you get to register. Since I qualified with only about three minutes to spare, my group will be the last to get the chance to register. So who knows if there will be any spots left. Come 2013, standards will be lowered by five minutes for each age group and continued wave registration. For the most part, I am ok with these changes. I think it makes it more fair for everyone. Plus-i like a challenge :) My goal was to break 3:35, so I am ready for this upcoming to challenge!! I just hope they have some kind of system worked out to make it fair for all age groups. What happens to the 60 year old whom just qualified by only 10 seconds? Does he have to wait for the last wave to register just because he cant run a 2:30?? Only time will tell.

What I am not thrilled with is that over 20% of entrants are charity runners. First, let me say, I think it is great that people donate large amounts of money to charity. I for one plan to run my first race for charity this upcoming October at the Marine Corps Marathon. Hopefully, I will run for TAPS (tragedy assistance program for surviors) in memory of Senior Airman Benjamen White whom gave his life for his country. (I will not forgot). I will raise money and proudly run for in his memory.

However, as far as Boston is concerned, I think one should have to qualify for it. (Sorry, it is my opinion-if you dont like it, quit reading my blog). Reason being, the race was begun and founded upon the fact that you must qualify for it. It is a prestigous race and is known as the end all be all of marathons. It is all of our ultimate running goals. I admit, i want one of thsoe blue jackets with yellow lettering that says "Boston Finisher". But...I want to earn it by quallifying for it. The problem with charity slots is that you have to typically donate astronomical amounts of money. Another issue I have is that people can get in by writing essays, knowing the right people, or being on the biggest loser. What about the rest of us who work our asses off to qualify????? Just doesnt seem fair to me. I would be highly pissed off if Kona Ironman allowed charity entrants. One should earn it. Just saying.

Now that I am off that soap box, I will give you a brief training update. Being sick last nearly two weekends ago really took it out of me. So I was slow getting back at it. However, I was able to complete a 12 miler on Saturday at an 8:50 pace on the creeper. I will take it! Sunday, I complete a long ride...approx an 1:35 minutes with Jamie and Tony Williams as well as Jason. I was SLOW!!! I blamed it on the wind ;). I think i averaged right about 14 mph. I will get faster! I will get faster! (say it with me!)

Monday, I was lucky enough to spend the afternoon with my Valentine-Jason bike shopping in Asheville. And I have now purchased to come soon :).

Tuesday I completed a difficult speed workout. 2 mile warm up followed by 10 400 meter repeats! I averaged a 1:33 pace. Pretty good for me. Finished up with a slow cool down -about 2 miles. As always, it is such fun to spend time with my running family. I love the encouragement and uplift I get from them! Thanks everyone!

Today, I went to Master's Swim. Interestingly enough, we worked on the flip turn. Flip Turn=1, Me=0. haha. In all seriousness, I think I will get better. They say, practice makes perfect. This evening, I completed a 45 minute run with 5.25 miles. I am already looking forward to spin class in morning and a foot rx group run. Happy training to all!

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Back at it...sort of

Needless to say, due to a diagnosis of flu (yes, i had the flu shot), my workout week has been non existant since last Thursday. I felt bad after group run last week and it progressively got worse from there. I decided not to go to Master's swim on Friday, but made it to work for a whopping 3 hours. I spent the rest of the day and night sleeping on my couch. Saturday morning I woke up and felt even worse. I took myself to the doctor and had the pleasure of two q-tips going up my nose. Results-FLU. Ughh. Good news, I got medication that proceed to make me comatose until late Monday afternoon. Hence, no working out. Boo. I was so terribly disappointed to miss not only my long run, but my ride! Sigh.

Tuesday, I began to perk up so i ventured to the wellness center that evening for Power Pump. As usual, it kicked my butt. Back, chest, legs, and abs all within an hour. As I write this two days later, I am still feeling the after effects. After the class, I attempted a treadmill run. FAIL. I felt terrible and my legs were heavy despite being off for so many days.

Wed=long day at work. No swim or run.

Today, I felt a bit better. I was signed up for my typical spin class this morning. Due to that horrific white fluffy stuff, class was cancelled. However, those of us who still showed up made our own spin class for an hour. Then directly there after completed my brick workout-2 mile run on treadmill in 17:08. Not bad. By mile two, I was beginning to get my legs under me again. Tonight, I braved the cold with my fellow Foot Rx family and ran the loop averaging about an 8:09 pace. Pretty pleased with my pace with all things considering. However, not so pleased with how my legs feel. Ton of led bricks.

Not sure about what the weekend holds. Hopefully a long run and ride if my legs and lungs are up to it. I have heard we are expected to get into some 60 degree weather next week. Keep your fingers crossed and rub your rabbit's foot for that one!!!!

On the non workout side of the weekend, Ava Estelle is turning one! Can't believe it. I will be celebrating her birthday Saturday afternoon with her mama, daddy, and rest of her family. So blessed to know them. :)

Friday, February 4, 2011

Too much, Too little...WTH?

Interesting workout week thus far. Wed morning I got up and went to master's swim. Endurance sesssion and it went well. I have come to find that i really love being in the water. I think its fun to challenge myself to things I would have never thought possible. If you had seen me swim at my first sprint tri you would have understood exactly what i am referring to. After a long day at work between home health and pediatric PRN i made it to the gym. Only completed a 3.5 mile run. I was planning on 5, but then out of no where, I was starved. As crazy as it sounds, I became fixated on getting something to eat. Clearly, the obvious solution was to jump off the treadmill (aka "the dreadmill") and head straight to Cracker Barrell to meet Jason.

Thursday morning I got up as promised and headed to spin class with Holly. If you are a member of the Wellness Center and are looking to have a good spin workout, her Tuesday/Thursday classes are the way to go. She challenges you up hills (long ones I might add), sprints, and down flat roads with resistance. I feel I get one of the best workouts when I am in her class. It is just sooooooooooooo hard to get that early at least 4 of 5 days a week. Anyone have any tips? As always, Thursday nights consist of Foot Rx Group Runs. I ran with my friends Lianne and Lana and we finished in 41:30. A bit under an 8:30 mile. Good as always to see my running family. Thursday nights are one of my favorite nights of the week. I always get so inspired to be with a group of people whom love doing the same thing I do. I am never short of amazed of the dedication and determination of the people I see week after week. Rain or shine, hot or cold...they are faithfully there, ready to run. I love it! If you are in the area, you should come run with us and meet some of the best people I know :)

Today-not so happy day. I am officially sick. I have admitted it. Not. Happy. At. All. I tried taking Nyquil and sleeping it off last night. Unfortunately, I had to miss Master's Swim this morning (insert sad face here). Although, I tried to make it to work, I only lasted a couple of hours. I am now back home laid up on the couch. Hopefully, if i rest today and maybe tommorrow, I will feel like either a long ride or run on Sunday. I am disappointed becasue I had been having such a good trainging week. Perhaps I was doing too much exercise on too little sleep? Eh. Who knows.

Time to sniff some Vics Vapor Rub.

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

It's Back...

Today marked the return of speed work outs. And what a rude awakening it was. Despite building miles and endrance, speed work has been non existant. We began with a lesson on taking water during races. Thanks to Allison and Steve, good tips and advice were shared. Example: if cup is being handed on left side, take with your left hand. Do NOT reach across your body! Also, pinch the cup to drink so it does not fly up your nose. Helpful tips to use when racing.

The workout today consisted of 5 x 400 meters with a 90 second rest break. 400 splits were- 1:26, 1:28, 1:28, 1:34, 1:35. Defenitly tired towards the end. Although speed work is likely my least favorite workout of the week, I find it one of the most rewarding. Not to mention the fact that I like seeing my race times improve :)

Tommorrow is my long day at work. First-meeting at Gentiva, home health patients, and then pediatric clinic. Not sure what workouts will consist of. I plan on going to master's swim in the morning and then...possibly a short run tommrrow evening? Then again, maybe a rest after work might be good.

I read something in a book that challenged me to do workouts in the am for 21 days. Ugh. Who wants to get up at 530 for 21 days????? But...there is something to getting it over with in the am. Hmmmm...just a thought.

Monday, January 31, 2011


Absolutely beautiful out! I love this weather. Although I am pretty sure it is just a teaser. Something tells me we have plenty of cold weather left until spring. Until then, I am going to enjoy every single second of this weather!

This morning, I had Master's Swim practice. Today, was butterfly day. Oh the joy! I must point out that it took me forever to be able to swim freestyle comfortably and feel somewhat decent at it. Introduce me to a new stroke...(insert big GROAN). The dolphin kick drill about did me in. However, we then added arms. Strangely, I found myself enjoying it and not being too bad considering it was my first day swimming fly. Kind of exilerating to learn something new. And yes, GASP, I said i enjoyed learning a new swim stroke :).

After I got off, I put on shorts and a light long sleeve shirt and went for a run. Started at Wellness Center and went out part of Foot Rx Loop and back for a total of 7. First half of run, I a ran reasonably well. Second half...not so much. I think I get a mental block when I have to turn around and come back. Despite my slower miles in the middle of my run I finished out with an 8:26 pace. I will take that.

Before I started this post tonight, I logged onto facebook and saw that FootRx is resuming speed work tm night. (5:30 at Science Hill Track) As much as I HATE speed work, it has really helped me drop my times in 5k, 10k, halfs, and fulls. Now, hopefully it will help me with my endurance endeaver of the Ironman.

I am going to deligently work on getting more sleep and trying to eat better. (I am notorious for sleeping little and eating terribly). Help keep me accountable!

PS-I feel like a small child, I can hardly contain my excitement for Disney with my girls!!!!

Sunday, January 30, 2011

South Holston Dam Ride

Today was my first of many bike rides while training for the Ironman. And what a perfect day for a ride it was! Temperatures averageing between 63-65 degrees at the end of January! The company was splendid too...Thanks to Tony, Jamie, and Ben for riding with me and offering me lots of words of encouragements and advice :) I appreciate more than you all know.

Our ride began from the cabose in bluff city and continued down Egypt Road onto Silvergrove which led us to Riverside. It was a beautfiul ride along side the river. We came out at Hickory Tree Store and headed towards south holston dam. I particularly enjoyed this ride secondary to riding right past where my grandparents and dear great aunt E lived. Many fond memories.

The hardest part of the ride for me was the climb up South Holston. It was my first real climb to date. Although it was difficult, I was thrilled to have made it to the top. I cant wait to do it again, only faster next time :) By the time we finished our ride, my  legs were a spent. However, I am already looking forward to next weekend when I will get to ride again!

Saturday, January 29, 2011

War Party 10K

What a beautiful day out! I am in awe of what God does to lift our spirits. I could not have possibly asked for better weather for the War Party 10K. There was such a great turn out! i was pleased to see everyone out taking advantage of this lovely weather. Only thing missing...Jamie Mains. Just isnt the same without her there. However, she was excused from this one due to a Girls on the Run Meeting :).

I ran a 48:08 on the course averaging 7:45 miles. For the most part, I was pleased. Especially considering the tough hill you have to climb twice! However, I am a bit disappointed that I didnt run a bit faster up the hill the second time around. It killed my average. Such is life. Thanks to Tom Murrell, Linda Morgan, Mark and Lianne Jennings, Ray Gravitte, Ben Rasnick, Anita, and Allison Pastorik for cheering me on. Great job voluntering friends! Always good to see you all.

Three cheers for Teresea Lindamood, Sherry Richardson, Debi Secor, and Lana Moore for running some awesome times today! You all rock! Very proud of each of you.

Tommorrow's Plan: Tackle White Lightening Ride with Ben, Jamie and Tony Williams. Pray my legs hold up. Happy Saturday!

Friday, January 28, 2011

Officially Registered

As in of Wed night, I became registered for the Ironman. Right now, I have lots of mixed emotions. I am incredibly humbled by the distance. I am excited for the opportunity to train and complete the event with some of my favorite workout people! I am also sacred to death. I realize I have a tremendous amount of training to do over the next six months. Want to help? Encourage me. Offer to run, ride, or swim with me. Those are my loves. If you ask to go with me or invite me to go with you, I would gladly accept.

I am very thankful for thsoe people whom have encouraged me and pushed me into signing up. Jamie and Tony Williams have been explained my lack there of cycling skills. Yet still, they have advocated and cheered me into registering. I am very much looking forward to training with Jamie and learning from her. Her enthusiasm definetly rubbed off on me. From day one, Rachel Monderer has believed in me. I ran in to her at the gym Wed night and she matter of factly said, "I know you can do it." So, with her vote of confidence-I went for it. I also need to thank Jason Lewis, my other half, for the reality check. I know he will be behind me the whole way-keeping my training in check. And of course, Jamie Mains, my faithful running/training parter and bestest whom believes in me in all areas of live.

Quick trianing update:

Wed- am: Master's Swim endurance workout consisting of freestyle and backstroke. pm: 1 hour on spin bike set at random hill level 11 with an average of 17.01 followed by a treadmill run of 3 miles in 26 flat. First brick workout of many to come.

Thursday- Easy 5 at FootRx Group run. Ran slow in preparation for war party 10k on Saturday. Averaged an 8:40 pace.

Friday-Master's Swim with focus on speed 12 25 meter sprint repeats on 40 second intervals. Followed by 75 build and then 100 build. Ended with 6  25 meter sprints on 100. Including warm up and cool down 1700 meters

Tommorrow is War Party 10K. Do not really feel race ready...We shall see.

Monday, January 24, 2011

Another week...

Woke up this morning with more snow. Boo. I am over it. I am ready for spring and sweat! Saturday I decided to run long, alone. I wasnt sure how much time I would have Sunday so I figured it was best to get it over with. I left from the Wellness Center and headed out towards the hospital where I made I right onto markey. I ran down past the Down Home and came back up through VA and to finish with the last 4 miles of the Foot Rx Loop. Needless to say, it was an intense hilly run. I averaged about an 8:50 pace. Stopped for water at the Shell station around mile 9. For me, it felt slow. Even though I know it was still a bit fast for long runs, it is still hard for me to get in the mind set to run SLOW. I have read and memorized Hal Higdon's plan. Therefore, I know the importance of the Long Slow Distance (LSD). But doing it and feeling good about it is something else...Anyhow, I finished it.

Sunday, after church, I met Jamie Mains, Jamie Williams, and Tyler Ramey in Kingsport to run a recovery run. Beautiful day, around 40 degrees with sunshine! We ran the crazy 8's course at about a 9 min pace. Actually felt pretty good. It was nice to run with new running friends. I find it fun to see other people's running energy and love. It makes me smile and gives me a new found love for the sport.

Today, thus far, I have made it to my Master's Swim class. We focused on drills for the back stroke. My shoulders are shot as are my legs from all the flutter kicking. Even though it is early, I have truly come to love my swim class. Nearly 8 months ago I couldnt swim a length of a pool. Now, I can swim 2 miles. Crazy. Time to get ready for work...

Friday, January 21, 2011

Becasue of Niki...

Recently, Niki Ferguson approached my dear friend Jamie Mains about doing the Disney Princess Half Marathon. One thing led to another, I signed up along with our good friends Sherry and Allison. Needless to say, I am pumped. What could be more exciting than running through Magic Kingdom and giving Mickey high fives with some of my favorite running friends? If you said nothing, I am in one hundred percent agreement.

Since Niki decided to run the race she also decided to start a running training blog. Thus far, I have been inspired and thouroughly enjoyed reading her posts. Sometime, while reading her blog, I played around with the idea of starting one of my own. So here it is. Let me be clear, if you have no intrest in running, endurance sports, triatahlons, hearing about my training (both ups and downs), or simply me...then this is not for you. If, however, by chance you do feel free to share with me my journey over the next year (or however long I decide to keep this blog), then by all means, read on.

As some of my close friends already know, I have strongly been considering doing the Ford Louisville Ironman with my boyfriend, Jason-whom which would obviously finish several hours in front of me :). Last year, when I went and watched Jason complete his first Ironman, I was amazed at the athletes and determination of everyone out there. Somewhere in the back of my mind I thought I would like to try that. As the months passed, I focused on one thing and one thing only-qualifying for Boston! On December 4, 2010 I crossed the finish line of the West Palm Beaches Marathon Festival in 3:38:03-a Boston Qualifying time!! to the fact that Boston filled up so quickly, I am now waiting to see if they tighten up times and if mine is good enough. I figure as I wait, I may as well look onward to my next goal-breaking 3:35 and completing an Ironman. With the encouragement of Jamie Willams and Ben Rasnick, I have come to the decision that I will begin the training next month. I know I have alot of work ahead of me-especially when it comes to cycling. I suppose come Feburary or beginning of March, I will go full force into training. If anyone ever wants to go on a ride, give me a call. I will need all of the practice I can get.

In the meantime, I will continue my early morning swims and long sweaty little jaunts (thanks Sid!). As in of now, not sure what my running plan is for tommrrow. Something between 6-8 likely. Then a long run on Sunday with Jamie Williams and hopefully Jamie Mains (any of my other fellow running friends are welcome to join us).