Sunday, October 7, 2018

Twin Cities Marathon Conquered

The day has finally arrived.  12 weeks of training and was ready to finally run in cool, fall weather!  Eddie and I have never been to the Twin Cities of  Minnesota.  We both were excited to see fall colors and experience a new state together.  We always like to go and see the sights and enjoy new places to eat.

On Friday when we arrived and went straight to the expo to pick up my race packet.  I always stock up on free snacks for later :).  We then get a bite to eat and called it a night.

On Saturday, we slept in and sooo needed that.  We got up and decided to go for a fun 3 mile trail run at the Minnesota Valley National Wildlife Refuge.  I always have a short shake off run the day before my marathon.  I ran at Eddie’s pace, nice and slow which was fine with me and what I needed.  We ran by a lake/ponds with lots of ducks, swans and geese.  Oh and we did run into what I thought was a homeless person under a bridge, bundled up in a sleeping bag.  He was sleeping and covered completely all over including his head.  Eddie thinks he wasn’t homeless because he had his bike and nice hiking shoes next to him.  There is no way, I would ever run through that solo and glad Eddie was with me.

Afterwards, we went and got some breakfast at the Tiny Diner.  I had the salmon omelette, grits and wheat toast and it was delicious.  Everything I eat as soon as I land will be my fuel for tomorrow marathon. I really don’t believe in diet and just try to eat more carbs the week of my marathon.  During my training, I do eat clean and more Paleo like, but I do have a cheat day once a week.  I don’t drink alcohol much either.

We then decide to go do a little shopping at the biggest mall in the US. This place was huge and it has an amusement park right in the middle of it.  We FaceTimed Noah to show him and went and got him a toy as a souvenir.  I also bought me some cute boots and jeans as my souvenir...LOL!

We found a Walmart and got my race morning breakfast.  I always eat an almond butter, banana bagel for my breakfast before my marathons.  I always carb load as my tradional dinner and I like to eat Italian.  I always eat either pasta or pizza for dinner.  So, we ate at the Old Spaghetti Factory.  It kinda reminded me of Spaghetti Warehouse back home.  We call it a night and get things ready for tomorrow.

The big day arrives:
I wake up at 5:30 a.m. to get ready and always take care of business before my runs...or it will not be a good run...LOL!  We leave at 6:45 a.m. and get there at a little after 7:00  a.m.  My race didn’t start until 8:00 a.m. so, I was good.  It was so cold and ready to run to warm up when I get there.  I didn’t take a jacket or extra clothes to shed off.  I was excited because this is the best weather to run in and I always run way faster in this vs. hot weather.  Although I trained in hot summer Texas weather, I honestly think that when we run in this, we always run faster in cooler weather.  I asked a couple of girls about the elevation on this marathon while waiting on the porta potty and was warned that mile 21 and up will be hilly.  Of course, the hills always seems to come when we are tired and fatigued towards the end.  However, I wasn’t going to think negative and just run and enjoy this awesome weather.

At mile 8, I passed the 3:25 pacer and thought to myself, “Wow, I don’t feel like I’m going that fast.” I kept going and felt great.  There were a lot of spectators on the course which always makes it fun.  I passed by lots pretty parks, trails and several lakes and the Mississippi River which was nice.  I was running really fast and thought I could probably get a new PR.  My PR to beat is from my Chicago Marathon of 3:24 several years back.  But then it happens.  My right hamstring wants to cramp up.  I thought, “please just let me finish.”  I then start to see lots of runners on the side of the road stopped to stretch and some were limping.  I told myself, “Lydia don’t you dare stop to stretch, just slow your butt down!”  Then that crazy hill at mile 22 comes and it’s a monster hill!!  I couldn’t believe it and that’s when the 3:25 pacer passes me up.  I wish I could tell the people who create these marathon courses to give us these crazy hills at mile 13-15, but not when we are tired towards the end.  Oh well, I just rolled with the punches and kept going.  I really tried to keep up, but my hamstrings started to cramp up more.  My left hamstring wanted to start too.   At mile 22, I had no choice, but to slow it down.  I was at a sub 8 pace per mile up until that point and ran to the finish at almost 9:00 min pace per mile.  We as runners can’t control the weather or the course route, but we can control our mindset.  Stay positive and always listen yo your body! I finished at 3:28:52 and that was my 2nd fasted marathon.  I was cool with that and happy to finish!

Keep on running friends!

Sunday, September 23, 2018

Last 20 Miler Run

Today I ran my last 20 mile run in my training schedule.  I wanted to do it yesterday, but got rained out.  A good thing about not teaching cycle on Sundays anymore is the flexibility of being able to do my long run on either Saturday or Sunday.  This was probably my worst run during this training and it's all my fault.  Eddie and I had a date night with friends last night and got in a little late.  Although I didn't drink alcohol (will not a month out before my marathons) I didn't get my normal carb loading meal the night before.  I also ran out of my salty cliff bloks and no banana for fuel this morning.  One thing you need to make sure you do and get ready the night before to make sure you have everything you need for your run.  Well, since I came in late, I was too tired and went to sleep instead.

Well, I paid for it during my run.  I started to cramp on my turn-around.  I did have my coconut water, but it just wasn't enough.  Thank goodness, Eddie and my little boy came along with me and rode their bikes while I ran.  They were only able to ride 12 miles and stopped to get a bite to eat, while waiting to catch up to me on my turn around.  Once I saw them, I told Eddie that I was hurting and starting to cramp and my right knee was starting to ache.  I also forgot to take my supplements before bedtime, another mistake!  He took off and went to a restaurant to see if they had an orange or banana  he could buy from them and told them what was happening to me.  He said they just gave him an orange.  That was nice of them and after eating that I felt a lot better.  He also filled up my water bottle with water cause I ran out.
Post Run Meal-black bean, goat cheese, avocado burger and sweet potato fries.

So, the point of this post, is to make sure you are getting the proper sleep, stretch night before, take your vitamins, and fuel properly before going for your long runs.  Trust, me a little night of fun isn't worth the pain the next day on your run.  So lesson learned!  Now ready to taper down :)

Sunday, September 16, 2018

Tough Run

This week at work was hectic! I couldn’t wait until Friday to get here.  However, I had to stay late Friday after work and speak at our first PTO meeting at school at 6 p.m.  Afterwards, I headed to co-host a Rodan and Fields Spa Night with my business partner.  It was great meeting new friends, seeing teachers from my previous campus too.  We ate, we laughed, we drank wine and we washed our face and tried skincare products.  It was beautiful and so much fun!  I stayed until 10:30 p.m. and had to get up and run 16 miles next day.  Yes, I was tried, but that event was so worth it.  It was just what I needed after a hard week.  That is one of the reasons I love my Rodan and Fields business.  I love sharing great skincare products that work and help people get healthy skin and lashes!  We are all aging all the time, why not age gracefully?

I woke up Saturday at 6:00 a.m. and started my run by 7:05 a.m.  I normally don’t drink when I’m training for a marathon, but like I said, this past week was hectic...LOL :). I only had one glass of wine, but I’m a light weight and didn’t drink enough water because I felt dehydrated on my run.  I did stop to buy my coconut water, but I ran out and had to stop and get some water at a restaurant on the trail that supplies water for runners.  I did some hill work over at TCU, but had to make a pit stop cause my tummy started to hurt (darn wine).  I felt my left calf muscle wanting to cramp up and had to slow it down and then pick it up again on my turn around.  I tried to stay in the shade as much as I could cause it got hot pretty fast.

I have decided to start taking yoga class on Sundays since I”m not teaching cycle anymore on Sundays.  I feel like my body really needs to stretch more and work on my flexibility and core.  I know that will make me a better runner and just need to make time for it.  I’m a month out from my marathon and next week will be my last 20 miler before I start to taper down.  Praying I stay injury free.

Sunday, September 9, 2018

Great 20 Miler

Friday was my off day for I had a 20 mile run on Saturday.  Eddie and Noah decided to go eat Italian food to carb load for my run.  I always eat pasta or pizza before my long runs.  That's what works for me.  I don't eat much for breakfast (only half a banana) and my body runs on fat storage.  I woke up Saturday, got ready to run my first 20 miler and then I heard thunder outside.  I went to look and sure enough it started pouring rain and it wasn't going to get better.  So, I decided to crawl back in bed and went to sleep.  I figured I would run Sunday now that I don't teach cycle, I can makeup my runs on Sundays.  I must of been so tired because I didn't wake up until 10:00 a.m.!!  I couldn't believe that Eddie let me sleep in too.  I sooo needed that and felt great when I woke up.  I didn't even get up to go to the gym to work out.  I figured I better save my legs for my 20 miler today so, took both Friday and Saturday as rest days.  I haven't done that in a while.

I woke up and looked outside and it was cool and cloudy skies.  I looked at the forecast and the weather didn't call for rain today.  I ran my 20 miler at a pretty fast pace in the beginning.  It felt great!  I started running at 7:20 and it was 64 degrees outside!!  However, I was running too fast that at mile 17 my right hamstring wanted to cramp up.  I had to stop and stretch it out and continued again.  I drank all my coconut water and so glad that H&S Supply Co. Restaurant had some water out for runners on the trail.  I was able to fill my water bottle to finish my run.  I averaged an 8:08 pace per mile and finished in 2:42:43.  Not bad, but I do have another 20 miler on my training schedule and hope to beat this time.  Plan to work more on strength and yoga into my training to prevent injuries.  Not stretching or hydrating enough before long runs.

Monday, September 3, 2018

Labor Day Weekend

I was so ready for this long weekend holiday!  Work was hectic, but don't get me wrong, I still love my new job.  I'm learning a lot and just wished I had more hours in the day.  My days go by fast and I like it!

My running is still going on mainly after work due to my new work schedule/drive.  I rather run first thing in the morning, but I make it work in the afternoons.  After my Saturday morning long run (14 miles) Eddie and I decided to take off to Austin for a date night on Saturday night.  We just wanted to get out of town and enjoy the holiday weekend.  It was weird waking up on Sunday and not going to teach my cycle class at the gym.  I did enjoy sleeping in and sometimes, that is what our body needs more of....SLEEP.  We all tend to get so caught up in our busy life that sometimes we deprive our bodies from getting the proper rest.  That is one thing, I'm trying to do better on.

The weather today for Labor Day called for cooler temps and rain.  I took advantage and went for my weekday long distance run of 8 miles scheduled for Wednesday and did it today.  It was cloudy and like mist which made for a cool and refreshing run.  There were people out on the trial running, walking, parents watching their children practice soccer, others playing tennis and even the golfers where out.  It didn't start raining until I finished running.  I was able to run it faster due to the hot sun not beating down at me that I was able to beat the rain.  It was a happy run :)

Keep on running!  

Sunday, August 26, 2018

Hard to Say Goodbye

My mileage is picking up.  I ran 18 miles yesterday and I was a tough one.  Eddie and I had a date night with another couple friend of mine.  We went to see my favorite artist, Lindsey Stirling in concert Friday night.  I had bought these tickets a while back and didn’t tell Eddie about it until this month.  He’s never heard of her before, but agreed to go with me.  I have listened to her music during my long runs and have her music on many of my playlist I use to teach my cycle class.  It was such a great time and she puts on a great show.  I didn’t go to bed until past midnight and woke up at 6:00 a.m.  and starting running by 7:00 a.m.  It was in the 80’s and I was very tired, but told myself this run wasn’t going to be about speed.  It’s go to be about drinking more water and going slower just to finish.  My second half was a lot slower than first half because the temperature got hotter and I was running with sun on my face.  I tried to stay in the shade as much as I could.  I filled my water bottle once to stay hydrated.  My final time was 2:34:20 at 8:34 pace per mile. I was fine with that cause I listened to my body.

On Sunday, I taught my last cycle for L.A. Fitness on Sundays in Keller.  It was bittersweet, but Eddie is wanting me to spend more time with family on the weekends now that I have a new job.  I understood cause family will always come first in my life.  I did let my club members know that I will be able to sub from time to time so that it’s not goodbye forever :). I will miss them for I have been teaching that class for about four years.  This class wasn’t huge, but the few that came would wake up early on Sundays to come work on their fitness with me.  They inspired me to work harder and helped me train for my marathons.  And for that, I’m very grateful. I will continue to teach my cycle classes on Tuesday/Thursdays at the downtown location.  Cycle has really helped me prevent injuries with my running and my endurance is great, so I will not ever stop doing cycle as part of my cross-training days as long as I’m running marathons!

Sunday, August 12, 2018

Bring on the Rain

Super excited that we finally got some rain ALL weekend long!  I was able to run with very light misty rain for my 14 mile run this weekend.  I decided to run Trinity Trails and my alma mater at TCU for some hill work.  It was in the 70s when I ran and humid but a lot cooler than it has been last week.  I was dodging a lot of puddles and mud along the way and made sure not to slip and fall on the messy muddy sidewalks.  There weren’t a lot of people out on the trails until I ran at TCU.  It looked like they were getting ready for a game or something because there were a lot of people out.  I always enjoy running around the TCU stadium and track field.  They always have the best motivation signs all around it that keep me going.   I can’t wait for college football to start.  I really want to go see a game this season.  I also want to go visit our boy Mason at Texas A&M and see a game there too.  It’s going to be a great fall season!

Keep on running!