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Still Running

I took a little break from the blog while life things happened after the Marine Corps Marathon, but I'm still hitting the pavement.

I ran a Turkey Trot 5k with my brother-in-law on Thanksgiving day,


the Brandon Half Marathon two weeks ago,


the Let It Snow 5k for Girls on the Run last weekend,


I finally replaced my overly worn shoes with the newest Brooks Ghost (7),


I went back to my bootcamp class this past week after a seven-month hiatus (ouch),


I made a bike change that I've been wanting to do for a while--I sold both my road bike and my cruiser and bought a hybrid (if you ever want to know where NOT to try to sell, ask me),



and I ran (sort of) the Say No to Drugs 10k (a.k.a, the Scientology run) this morning. I was having a fantastic race for the first half, but then I started to feel a pain in my right-side abdominals, and all of a sudden I couldn't keep going. I had to pull over to the side and was practically doubled over in pain. I knew my abs were over-sore from the…

Marine Corps Marathon 2014 Recap

This is long enough overdue--I know. Life has been busy, and that's good. But before I wait too long and attempt a lengthy post that covers everything, here are the highlights from my first (and probably last) Marine Corps Marathon:

I'm really glad I did it. I don't want to give the impression that I'm not. However, running in this race has made me want to cling even more to smaller races. I get a bit of social anxiety--or crowd phobia, or whatever you want to call it--when I'm squished among 30,000 other runners.I beat a Goonie. Yes, Sean Astin, the darling asthma kid from the Goonies (yay for asthma representation in the media!) ran this race, and I ran it faster than him. That doesn't mean much, but in a race in which I didn't PR, I have to claim something. His net time was 4:29:11, and his clock time was 4:30:56 (all in all, a great time). But this is significant because it means he had very little time between when the clock started and when he crossed…

MCM14 Training, Weeks 13 & 14

Week 13


Date Workout Miles Avg Pace Monday, 10/6Regular Run69:34Tuesday, 10/7Regular Run99:41Wednesday, 10/8Rest0--Thursday, 10/9Regular Run69:38Friday, 10/10Rest0--Saturday, 10/11Long Run149:52Sunday, 10/12Rest0--
Total Weekly Mileage: 35


Week 14


Date Workout Miles Avg Pace Monday, 10/13Regular Run59:29Tuesday, 10/14Regular Run79:47Wednesday, 10/15Rest0--Thursday, 10/16Regular Run69:31Friday, 10/17Rest0--Saturday, 10/18Long Run109:27Sunday, 10/19Rest0--
Total Weekly Mileage: 28

Oops. I fell behind on posting. I'm actually in my 15th (and final) week of training leading up to this Sunday's Marine Corps Marathon. The last two weeks have gone pretty well--with some on and off foot pain (and lots of rest, you might have noticed). At this point, I'm just going to go up there and give it my best effort. I don't think I'm going to do any major damage to my foot; I'm not trying to beat my PR. My last long run was a bit faster than the previous ones (and much shorter), and I think i…

MCM14 Training, Week 12: All Systems Go

Date Workout Miles Avg Pace Monday, 9/29Regular Run69:41Tuesday, 9/30Regular Run99:55Wednesday, 10/1Rest0--Thursday, 10/2Regular Run79:44Friday, 10/3Rest0--Saturday, 10/4Long Run219:57Sunday, 10/5Yoga0--
Total Weekly Mileage: 43

Last week was the week I was waiting for. It was the peak of my training schedule, and my success or failure in getting through it would, I believed, determine whether I'd be able to go into MCM feeling capable. And I was successful! So much, in fact, that I ran one extra mile than I'd planned for my long run (but mostly because I misjudged the distance).

I didn't run the full distances on my training plan during the week, as I've still been hesitant about my foot, but I didn't feel my long run was negatively impacted because of it. For the first time in a while, I ran with two other friends who are also running the marathon. I'd gotten so accustomed to running by myself that I forgot how much I enjoyed running with others--others who run my s…

MCM14 Training, Week 11: Get It Done

Date Workout Miles Avg Pace Monday, 9/22Regular Run59:15Tuesday, 9/23Regular Run810:28Wednesday, 9/24Rest0--Thursday, 9/25Regular Run79:57Friday, 9/26Rest0--Saturday, 9/27Long Run1810:01Sunday, 9/28Rest0--
Total Weekly Mileage: 38

Last week's theme was simply to "get it done." My runs have been slower lately, but I'm getting through them and my foot seems to me handling the mileage, so I'm OK with the decreased speed. I also ran most of my runs, except for the long one, in the evenings, which my body wasn't adapted to.

Monday's run was one of the last runs of my mini vacation (at home), and perhaps that had something to do with the better pace. I was also coming off of a pretty short long run a couple days back. I guess conditions were just good for that run, which I did once more at Upper Tampa Bay Trail, after visiting with my nieces.

On the Tuesday run, because I was on my last day of mini vacay, I was reluctant to get up early in the morning to run. I started…

MCM14 Training, Week 10: Let It Rain

Date Workout Miles Avg Pace Monday, 9/15Regular Run49:23Tuesday, 9/16Regular Run79:37Wednesday, 9/17Yoga0--Thursday, 9/18Regular Run69:31Friday, 9/19Rest0--Saturday, 9/20Long Run12.459:56Sunday, 9/21Rest0--
Total Weekly Mileage: 29.45

Last week was my cautious comeback to training. I cut back my weekly runs by a few miles overall, and I only had a twelve-mile long run on the schedule, which was very timely. Because this was my week off in between old job and new job, I was tempted, each morning, to sleep in and gave in to that temptation, each morning. So I ran in the evenings, which is doable at this time of year with the ever so slight shift toward cooler temperatures. 

I ran at the Upper Tampa Bay Trail on Monday, which I haven't run in probably a year. I enjoy this trail for shorter runs; it has several trailheads and is a little more than seven miles overall. Depending on where you start, it can feel like you're bouncing around from trailhead to trailhead, rather than running a …

MCM14 Training, Week 9: The Rollercoaster Continues

Date Workout Miles Avg Pace Monday, 9/8Rest0--Tuesday, 9/9Rest0--Wednesday, 9/10Rest0--Thursday, 9/11Yoga0--Friday, 9/12Regular Run39:43Saturday, 9/13Long Run159:41Sunday, 9/14Rest0--
Total Weekly Mileage: a whopping 18

Last week was a rest week. I wanted to give my foot a chance to make up its mind as to whether it was going to do this race or not. It appears to be leaning toward yes--though the extent to which I'll actually be "racing" is very much in question. And that's OK. 

I learned last week that the deadline to defer or transfer a bib to another runner has passed. So basically I'm stuck being signed up for it. In a way, that's good; it means I don't have to make a difficult decision. Everything is booked--race, flight, hotel. Very worst case scenario--I am too hurt to run at all, and I spectate. But I don't think it will come to that. I've long abandoned the idea of running a PR, and that's perfectly fine for me. So now I just plan to caref…

MCM14 Training, Week 8: Ugh

Date Workout Miles Avg Pace Monday, 9/1Regular Run5.259:35Tuesday, 9/2Rest0--Wednesday, 9/3Regular Run109:53Thursday, 9/4Regular Run79:48Friday, 9/5Rest0--Saturday, 9/6Long Run2.39:26Sunday, 9/7Rest0--
Total Weekly Mileage: 24.55

This past week not did not end up the way I'd hoped it would. Although it started strong, with high mileage weekday runs and little pain, by the time Friday rolled around, my foot was hurting more than usual. I hoped it was a fluke. I went to bed Friday night and hoped a good night's sleep would have me feeling better in the morning and ready to conquer 20 miles.

That did not happen. I met my friend Nicole for an early warm-up mile, and that mile didn't feel great. I couldn't decide whether I should just quit there or try to start with the group and hope for the best. Nicole reminded me that I bailed on her this same time of year last year, around her birthday, because I felt like I was going to pass out. So I felt guilty enough to at least attempt…

MCM14 Training, Week 7: Holding Strong (Enough)

Date Workout Miles Avg Pace Monday, 8/25Regular Run39:30Tuesday, 8/26Regular Run910:45Wednesday, 8/27Yoga0--Thursday, 8/28Regular Run79:47Friday, 8/29Rest0--Saturday, 8/30Long Run189:54Sunday, 8/31Rest0--
Total Weekly Mileage: 37

Last week started out a bit rough: I overslept for my Monday morning run and ended up doing three instead of four miles (not a huge deal, and not enough of a shortage for me to want to make up), and I decided I also didn't want to get up early on Tuesday morning, so I decided to do my nine miles that evening. And that was one of the worst runs I've had in recent memory. I haven't run in the evening in some time, so I wasn't used to the lingering heat and humidity from the day, and my stomach wasn't accustomed to running during that part of the day, so I had all kinds of cramps--side stitches, water cramps from drinking too much, and, er, BM cramps. But on top of that, my body had no energy. And my head started hurting. I was just off in ever…

MCM14 Training, Week 6: Hope for Me Yet

Date Workout Miles Avg Pace Monday, 8/18Yoga0--Tuesday, 8/19Rest0--Wednesday, 8/20Yoga0--Thursday, 8/21Regular Run59:38Friday, 8/22Rest49:26Saturday, 8/23Long Run/Yoga129:43Sunday, 8/24Yoga in the Park0--
Total Weekly Mileage: 21.5
So, this was my break week. But it doesn't look exactly like a break week. I made it through four days in a row (including the Sunday you don't see) without running (and check out all the yoga!). And then I tried a lower-mileage run on Thursday morning to assess where I was, pain-wise. It wasn't too bad, but my foot still hurt afterward as I was walking around. I'd made an appointment to see a sports massage therapist after work on Thursday, not having very high hopes for treatment--not because I didn't think the guy was good, but because I didn't think massage was an effective treatment for my particular problem (bursitis, or metatarsalgia). So I spent a half hour with Pete Pfannerstill, of UltraSports Massage Therapy, who has a rathe…

MCM14 Training, Week 5: A Setback

Date Workout Miles Avg Pace Monday, 8/11Regular Run69:33Tuesday, 8/12Regular Run99:47Wednesday, 8/13Rest0--Thursday, 8/14Regular Run69:37Friday, 8/15Rest0--Saturday, 8/16Long Run169:45Sunday, 8/17Yoga in the Park0--
Total Weekly Mileage: 37

My training runs are feeling better in some respects--endurance, mind set, time (sometimes)--but in another respect, I'm concerned about my ability to fully train for this marathon. My left foot, the one with bursitis, has been hurting again. It hasn't gotten so bad that I feel I can't run through it, and in fact the pain isn't the worst while I'm running--it's the days after when I'm just walking around that I feel the most pain. I just want to walk in giant, protective marshmallow shoes (perhaps I should try the Hoka One Ones). But the underlying issue would still be there. So what do I do? I've decided to take a bit of a break this week to see how much better I can feel. If my condition improves, I may go down to ru…