Yoga and Compromise

#myfriendsaremarried is awesome and so very true-to-life and apparently that’s how my brain is functioning now, so in #mfam style, here’s how my workouts have been going lately…

When my body just screams, YOGA, but my race calendar is jammed.

This Saturday I’m doing a charity walk with my family for my sister’s job.  She’s eight months pregnant and is calling it a waddle.

Then on Saturday night, I’m doing the Neon Splash Dash, my first real 5K of the season. Then Sister City 5K in three weeks, then three more weeks until my third half-marathon at the Fiesta Bowl Half on December 2, Hot Chocolate 5K on December 9 and the Athleta 10-miler on December 16! Then I yoga!

I’m actually keeping yoga in about three times a week, so it’s not a huge sacrifice and I really want to get my running level back up, plus I’m doing a lot of those races with friends, which I’ve found to be more fun, so that’s good motivation in itself!


Training Brain

In the past month, I signed up for – in event order – a half-marathon, an olympic tri (holy hell!), Pat’s Run 2012 and a sprint tri.  Because of that, I have training on the brain.

I’ve revised my plan about five times, but now it’s time to SOGOTP because as much as I want to pretend I could do just an eight weeks to half plan, I know I need a slower build because running has all but fallen off my radar since my tri, so I’m doing 12 weeks, which means starting this week!

I started at the end and worked my way back to the beginning, so while the 12-miler I planned sounds scary, I keep reminding myself that the first few weeks are short runs and I can give myself those 30-60 minutes each day – still sticking to my three days a week plan to fit in yoga and swimming and, you know, sleep – and by the time I get to the 12, I’ll be ready!

Training for the olympic tri is going to overlap with the last month of half-training and Pat’s Run is for fun a week after that.  It’s going to be a busy winter and early spring!

Three-A-Week 10K

I recently read an old post in which I said I wasn’t going to sign up for the Shun the Sun 10K this year because it was too soon after Weddingpalooza aka October. That race isn’t very close to me anyway and while the start is at a Spring Training ballpark, it’s not a particularly lovely area to run through, so I stuck to not signing up.

Instead, I signed up for a race a week earlier. Oops. I’m running the 3TV Phoenix 10K on November 6th.

You do what you can with what you have, so even though I only have five weeks until race day, which will include a lot of Forced Family Fun for my sister’s wedding next weekend and travel for my college roommate’s wedding, I came up with a plan to build my mileage and speed up my pace while working with my schedule. 

I have the workouts on specific days, but basically the goal is to complete the following runs each week, even if I have to shuffle them:

Week 1:  3 miles; 10/5/5/5/5 tempo run; 4 miles
Week 2:  10 /5/5/10/5 tempo run; 5 miles; 3.5 miles
Week 3:  5 miles; 5/10/10/15/5 tempo run; 6.5 miles
Week 4:  3.5 miles; 5/10/5/10/5/10/5 tempo run; 8 miles
Week 5:  4 miles; 5 miles; 3 miles

“Tempo” for this training is 8:30 and the longer runs will have race pace (9:00) miles added in.  My goal is 56 minutes to the finish line!

My training schedules are always a weird mix of training plans from running coaches who actually know what they’re doing, ideas from other runners and things that have worked for me in the past all mushed together to create something that I think will be doable, exciting AND challenging for me.  How do you come up with training plans?

Nothing At All (Woohoo Ooh)

Yesterday my training plan called for a day of rest. And. I. Rested.

Not so I only ran two miles in the morning.  Not and I went to my apartment gym and phoned it in while watching guilty pleasure TVNot even but yoga is more about my spirit, so the 75 minute practice I did hardly counts.

I. Rested. 

Yes, this is how I sleep, but no, yesterday’s rest did not include nap time.

Okay, disclaimer, I JUST remembered that yesterday was the first day of Girls on the Run practice and I ran ONE lap with them to keep them moving. 

When I got home, I was already sweaty simply from being outside and I had all intentions of at least going through a few flows on my patio (temps are still at least 100 at that time of the day, so that’s my new hot yoga space!) before rinsing off, but the rinse came first and then I found myself busy for the rest of the night.

Balance is good.  I love that a daily sweat sesh is part of my balance, but sometimes taking a day off to let everything hang loose is good too!


{Image} When I found this image, I learned that tummy sleeping is not just bad for babies, it’s bad for boobs (and necks and backs and wrinkles and snoring), but it’s so comfortable!

False Confidence

I’ve been trying to take at least one of my twice weekly runs outside, partially because I don’t see the point in going to the gym to run on the treadmill for the itty bitty times my training calls for and partially because I miss running outside.

Well, make that…I think I miss running outside until I do it and fail miserably. It’s hot, I can’t keep my pace up and I end up walking way more than I would like and I’m still sore afterward. What’s up with that?

My treadmill runs have been decent but have given me a false sense of confidence about where my running ability is these days.  On the treadmill (in a climate-controlled environment, with entertainment and my pride), I can still rock out a pretty decent run, but that was so not my experience outside this morning.

Earlier this summer I was knocking out double-digits for fun, but now that my runs are time-based, my endurance is down down down. I know that I traded it for increased swim and bike endurance to get me through all the legs of my tri and more than that, I know this is when running becomes a mental sport because I know my legs and lungs can do it for me…

BUT…I’m definitely looking forward to picking out my next mid-distance race and training for mileage again this fall, you know, like when it’s not hot as hell outside and when (knock on unrotted wood), I will be moving very close to an amazing running area!

The Monster at the End of This Week

My favorite book when I was a kid was The Monster at the End of This Book. Don’t ask me why, but I loved it. Perhaps because I was am an ornery little thing and enjoy that loveable, furry old Grover is telling me to do one thing and I’m doing another.

That book taught me that good things are followed by scary things that turn out to be not so scary after all.

That being said, I made it through the first three weeks of tri training and am at my first pull back week! I didn’t do pull backs for my half training and completely hit a wall about a month before the race, so I’m really happy that the plan I found and am following for the tri has them every fourth week.

I swam just 1000 meters last night and since it didn’t seem that daunting, didn’t do any sets, just swam and flipped until I was done.  I think the guy next to me thought we were racing, but I spent most of the time in his wake and if I could have had five minutes with him to teach him flip turns, he would have killed it even more.  Good work, buddy. 

This morning I only felt an itty bit guilty sneaking out of spin class at the :45 mark.  Yes, I’m spinning for my bike training (for shame), but it’s better than the recumbent and I’m still missing the adapter piece to make my pump actually work for my tires and it’s so hot outside and when I run out of excuses, I’ll get out there for my longer rides, I promise! 

Anyway, usually I’ll go over and above more often than not, but my heart wasn’t in it – partially because I knew I could cut out, partially because biking and I aren’t as good of friends as I was expecting to be – and the beauty of the training plan is that you do what it says and you move on with your life…or, like, you know, get to work on time.

My run tomorrow is so little it makes me sad, then I rest (well, take the yoga class that makes my knees sweat) then another easy-peasy swim, then…dun dun dun…

The scary thing lurking at the end of my glorious pull back week? My first brick workout. 

Now, sweataholic Rose – who is doing the same tri as me in the fall! – has been doing bricks on the reg, so it can’t be that bad, right? But Caitlin says bricks are named as such because your legs feel like bricks at the end!  What’s a tri girl to believe?

I’ve been doubling up with one of the sports and yoga in the same day a few times a week – and when it’s swim then yoga, my arms are toast at the end! – but this Saturday I’ll get my first taste of back-to-back sports.  Biking then running, to be specific.  It’s a little taste really, but it is going to earn me a mani-pedi day with my mom and sis and an early birthday celebration!

A Creature of Habit

Running is on hiatus.  This is my pattern with injuries (another knee thing from my last race) and from what I’ve read elsewhere in bloggyland, many people deal with them the same way:

First you think you can run through an injury.

Then you can’t so you think you’ll pull back.  My pulling back meant figuring out that my “too fast, knee is trying to give out on me” pace is anything above 5.5 on the tread, so I had some lovely jogs.

Then pulling back isn’t so much pulling back.  I was still trying to work out according to my training schedule, because my interval days only call for quick quarter-miles at a time and that’s not too bad.  I worked in about half of my goal intervals on that day.

Then it affects you in your everyday life (because you’re not actually pulling back), not just while running – like yesterday I wondered if I was just using it as an excuse to be lazy, but when it hurt going down the stairs, I was vindicated – so you take an actual break.

And while on that actual break, you get a little jealous when you see other runners out taking advantage of the 65 degree, light at 5:30 kind of mornings we’re blessed with here in Arizona. 

But, you ride your bike and do some other cross-training.  Then you get actually lazy and fall into drinking beer, staying up late and sleeping through the royal wedding!  The horror!

Okay, so this might have all happened in just the past two days.  Why does two days of not running seem sooo long?  It didn’t hurt down the stairs this morning and I even did them twice because my Friday brain forgot to take our phone to work. 

Tonight is for happy hour, tomorrow is for back-to-back activities, so that means Sunday is the day.  I just decided. 

I love the fresh start of a new month.  May + me + my knee = rocking it.

Grilled Cheese

I had a point when I started, but now I’m just going to go with, please forgive me this word vomit, it’s the Monday after a glorious three-day.

It was a lot of bike rides, girlfriends, pool time, reading, potentials, sushi, wine, a dive bar, live music, shopping and family.  Be jealous.

My training has been all over the place lately.  I’m mostly following a plan to get ready for my second 10k, which will be my last race of the season.  It’s getting toasty in Arizona, so I’m kinda sitting here wondering WHY I signed up for a race in mid-May (oh yeah, to honor this man’s short life and support a few good charities).

Anyway, because I’m expecting warm to hot weather, I’m not psyching myself up too much for an awesome race.  Yes, I’ll probably PR (woohoo for being able to say that since I’m now running repeat distances!) but then again, pretty much anything would beat my first 10k performance in which I was untrained and hungover/drunk.  Hey, don’t judge, I’ve come a long way in five months!

My knee has been bugging me since Pat’s Run, which is why I’m mostly following a training plan.  I’m trying to cross train more and rest, but by rest I mean work out yesterday morning and wait until tonight to train again.  That’s a solid 30 hours of downtime for the old knee!  There’s a hip thing too.  Perhaps my sports doc was onto something when he suggested PT?

My training two-piece came in, but I don’t like the color.  It’s a great suit so I’m exchanging it.  There are children in my pool right now anyway, so I can wait until it’s so hot that only the crazy people go in the pool (or outside in general). 

For my reward for the 10k – because OF COURSE I’m still setting my goals – I’m thinking of bike accessories (Meyer needs a lock and a basket), Ironman sunglasses (because my LA/Scottsdale look while running I’m sure is pretty redic) or going big with an indoor bike trainer. 

And happy zucchini bread day!  Yeah, it’s a thing.  I was going to post the ah-mazing recipe I recently found and fell in love with (I think it’s this one with applesauce instead of the oil) and beautiful pictures of the process of making it, but then I remembered zucc bread is pretty dangerous if you don’t have anyone at home to share the loaf with AND that two of the lights in my kitchen are out and the pics coming out of there are pretty dismal.

Now can we talk about when I looked up zucchini bread day, I learned this:

I’m slightly upset there’s only five days left to celebrate this glorious occasion, but let’s be honest, ain’t no party like a grilled cheese party ’cause a grilled cheese party don’t stop.  Plus, there’s still plenty of time to go Paradise Melts truck hunting.

Come to me!

T is for Thursday. And Tempo.

My legs have not wanted to participate in tempo runs since I started my Pat’s Run training, but today was different.  I bounced out of bed at 4:30am and completed my first successful (well, mostly) tempo run!

After a warm-up (aka, jogging to Blockbuster to return my latest movie), I did 3.33 miles in 30:08.  If I can do that pace on race day, I’ll come in just under my goal of 38 for the 4.2 miles! 

HOWEVER…I say it was “mostly” successful because there may have been some pausing and walking it off at the miles (I love the auto-lap feature on my Garmin that chirps at every mile – quite helpful when it’s still dark).  A few times I wanted to call it good, but I was feeling particularly stubborn this morning and as cliche as it is, I wanted to finish what I started – 30 minutes at race pace one way or another!

I feel good about it and being just about four weeks out, there’s definitely time for improvement! 

Now, I’m off to wreck my training* for tomorrow with a pint (or two).  Happy St. Patty’s Day! 


* Tomorrow calls for cross training (hello, Meyer) and strength.  That sesh will definitely NOT be taking place at 4:30am!

I WILL Run Today

Plan A:  Four miles on Wednesday morning.

Plan B:  Two margaritas + a late (for me) bedtime on Tuesday.

Plan C:  Swap Wednesday’s miles for Friday’s cross-training.

Plan D:  Do 7:42 (yeah, seriously, SEVEN minutes…for shame!) on the elliptical then go back home, go back to bed, sleep in 45 minutes past second alarm, be 30 minutes late to work.

And that’s where we are now.  I have back-up plans for tonight as well though, don’t you worry.

Plan E:  Squeeze in the four miles before my massage, assume that the masseuse has smelled worse.

Plan F:  Stay late at work since I was late getting in, think longingly of the running shoes I have in my car and give up on the excitement of running a new route around the spa.

Plan G:  Run post-massage, which is what I was trying to avoid so that I could just be blissed out and unwind on a stupid Wednesday night. Decide to reward myself for being so dedicated to training that I gave up being blissed out, but then remember it’s officially Lent and I have successfully taken away all of my go-to rewards.  Watch Being Erica on Hulu in bed, fall asleep 15 minutes in.

But…I WILL run today.