Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Half Marathon Training Week 7 ( With A Couple Races)

One of my favorite blog writers hosted a Virtual race to celebrate her birthday.  Hiker Mom has put together a 10k and 5k with fabulous prizes.  I, of course, Mrs. Virtual Race Crazy, did the 10k and the 5k.

The 10k I doubled with my TNT training run on Sunday.  Seven miles were on the schedule for this run and I was worried about it.  The Friday before, I went out for 4 miles and my knee started to really hurt and by the time I was done, my ankle was swollen.  I do not know why.  I iced and took some ibuprofen and was fine the next day.  I did, however, take Saturday off.

Not thinking when I was getting dressed on Sunday morning, I put on a black shirt and black capris.  Hello, did you not see the weather!?  90 degrees today and you are wearing black!  Yes, that is right, silly girl running.

I talked to the coach about my knee and he recommend a few stretches and told me to go out slow.  I did and the first 2 miles were nice.  It started to get warmer in the third mile, but I was still good.  At the water stop, I stretched and then moved on.

I have been running with some great people and Bria, in particular, has been awesome.  She runs at my pace and I enjoy talking with her.  She is also training for the Nike Women's Half and is a relatively new runner.  Today's 7 miles was the longest run ever for both of us.

I had to stop for a potty break in mile 4 and it was then, I realized how much my knee was hurting.   I stretched while I waited for Bria and then off we went.  This is when I started to think that I will not make it.  My positive self was fighting with my negative self and at this point I did not know who was going to win.

Mile five I had to walk.  Not long, just a few little walk breaks that lasted only 10 to 15 seconds.  On top of that, it was really hot now.

Mile 6, I stopped at a stone wall and stretched my right leg.  Coach also drove by to see how I was making out.  I told him I was struggling but that I was gonna make it.  Bria was just slightly ahead of me and I caught up with her after that and we finished up the 7 miles together.  My positive self won!

We got water, stretched, chatted and snapped a picture.  It is funny that I felt so bad for so much of this run,  yet when we were done, I felt awesome!
Bria and Me

Here is the even crazier part.  I started to think to myself that I should change to the full marathon.  I don't know if I will ever do this again so my logic is, if you are only going to do one, then make it a big one.  Give it your all, think big!

Don't get me wrong, 13.1 is big, and this is just talk.  I don't know if I am even allowed to do that.  I think I will wait it out and see how the next month goes.  The half marathon training brings me to 14 miles, my guess is if I feel the same way I did today on the next several training days, then I will stick with my original plan.  Besides, how many of you said one and done?  I bet not many, right?

Monday, I set off for a 3 mile recovery run doubled as the 5k portion of the Birthday Virtual 5k.  I was happy to be able to do this run with a friend who is also a neighbor so it was nice just walking out our door to start.

It was a rough start as my knee did not want to run.  My first few minutes I ran with a limp.  Half way up the hill, I had to walk a little.  I am pissed friends.  I don't know why this is happening.  I have an appt. with my doc on the 9th to see what is going on.
After the Birthday Virtual 5k

After I warmed up, my knee started to feel better.  I stopped limping and we ran.  It was not fast but it was a beautiful morning and I loved the company which made it all worth while.  We ran 3.21 miles in 38:05, not great time, but there was walking and technically, it was my recovery run so why kill yourself, right?

On Wednesday, July 4th, I took part in the Camire's Firecracker 4 Miler.  Woke up bright and early to rain.  Oh, well.  My friend and neighbor picked me up and we got there with plenty of time to kill.  That is the thing with small, local races.  No real lines.  I kind of like that, which is why the NWM freaks me out a bit.  I am finding it hard to wrap my head around what it looks like to have 1000's of runners, running at the same time, let alone the potty lines.

Right after we started, the rain stopped.  It was nice not to get super wet and the temp stayed cooler than I think it would of if it didn't rain.  I was thankful for this.  I kept an eye on one of my friends and stayed behind her for just under the first mile.  It spread out quickly and I ran most of the race alone.  I did not have my music because of the rain, and I was wishing I had taken my iPod with me.

When I hit the first mile marker, I was told I was doing a 10:16 pace.  This for me is fast, but I was feeling good and kept it up.  The course was described with rolling hills and boy, they were not kidding.  I am happy to say, I made it up and down every hill, running.  I walked through both water stops because I wanted to actually drink the water and not wear it.

At mile three, the guy told me my time, 32:06!  This would of been a PR if I was doing a 5k, but I knew now that it would also be a PR from my previous 4 mile race, which was 4.2 miles and I finished in 50 minutes.

Crowd support was not great, but the people that did show up to cheer us on, were all very encouraging.  I got a lot of compliments on my on my outfit, which was red, white and blue, of course.  I told people that if I was going to come in last, at least I would look cute.  LOL

I knew that I would have my two girlfriends at the finish to cheer me in, but I was also disappointed because my husband and the kids were not going to be there.  They have never seen me race yet and it saddens me every time I think about it

When I rounded the corner of the finish, I saw Jenn first, then I saw Jackie.  I love that feeling, hearing your friends and some strangers cheering you on.  I looked one more time at Jackie and there he was, Mr. RWM was smiling and taking a picture of me.  I couldn't believe it.  He has never seen me finish a race before and immediately my eyes started to well up.  I wanted to finish strong and that was the motivation that I needed.  I was expecting to finish in 45 minutes and my final time was 43:01!  I am thrilled.
Just before crossing the finish line.

This was not the easiest race I have done, but it was a nice course and well run.  I would definitely do it again.

All in all, week 7 of half marathon training has been really good.  My next run with TNT will consist of 8 miles.  I still think I may be a little crazy, but here I go.

Till next time, Run strong, think big!


  1. Great job! I think what you are describing on your long run would be considered your "wall" right now. During training for my first half mine was almost always at mile 6. It's mind over body at that point. You can do it! You have the right attitude. Keep up all the hard work it will be sooo worth it when you cross the finish at 13.1. For a week I was like..."I just ran 13.1 miles..13.1 MILES!" I'm still not fast but I still love the half. Good luck with the knee, hope it turns out to be nothing.



  3. Congrats on the PR, and so glad to hear your hubby made it down to the finish to see you!!!! Hope your knee is ok!

  4. Awesome races- it's fun to see your speed improving, isn't it? And I love that you're considering the full. :) I'd say do the half first and then decide, the full is a long, long way! Hope you get your knee figured out.. that's always discouraging.