Category: Running

Marathon Training

Hello friends!

I have been MIA but am glad to say I am back.  Yesterday was my last day of school!  Yay!!!  No more kids for 2 months but I know that I will miss my kids.  But anyway, now it is time for relaxing, running, and taking vacations.  Yes, I will be going on vacation for 3 weeks to Mexico, Ecuador and Peru.  So excited!!  Below is a photo of my backpack!  Yes, I have to pack L-I-G-H-T-L-Y!!

Marathon Training

Anyway, this is week 2 of my Hartford Marathon Training Program.  I am doing the Hal Higdon Intermediate II.  So far it is going well.  On Sunday I set up to do 10 miles but I am blaming it on humidity and was only able to do 8.  I made a mental note to get out on the lakefront earlier, say like 6am and not 7:30.

I am worried because I will be missing about 3 weeks of the plan.  I might be able to do Week 3 and part of Week 4.  I will miss Week 5 and part of Week 6.  I won’t be able to run but I will be doing a lot of walking/hiking.  Should I be worried?  Any suggestions/thoughts?  I guess I can just enjoy my time off and worry about it when I get back and see how I feel.

Well, that is all for now.  I am going to REI to return and get more stuff for my trips.

Hasta luego!


How do you run AGAINST the wind?

I know Chicago is called “The Windy City” for obvious reasons.  We also have some silly and crazy weather…hot for four days and then cold and rainy for two days.  Yesterday’s race was the worst race day ever.  Originally I signed up for the half marathon and changed it to the 10K.  I am so very glad I did.  I took the train downtown and waited for about 5 minutes for a coffee shop to open to use the bathroom and of course to get some coffee.  It was the BEST coffee I have ever had.  I then made it to the race site, used the bathroom again, added another layer, of clothes, dropped off my gear and went to look for the start line.  This is the third year I run this race and of course I did not read the instructions indicating the new start line.  I followed the other runners and found it.

The beginning was really nice.  I had plenty of room to run, the sun was shining, and there was no wind.  At some point around mile two I could feel the wind pushing me.  Yay!  I am running faster!!!  However, I knew that I was going to pay for it on the way back.  Oh.  My.  Goodness.  On the way back it was windy, cold, and raining.  I could not believe it.  I would run but had to stop a few times because it was just so bad.  I was running behind these girls that were running about a 10 minute pace but I just could not keep up.  I was running along the lakefront and could see the waves crashing.  I would have enjoyed the view on another day but at that moment I just wanted to get to the finish line.

My goal to finish the race was 1:06.  However, I finished in about 1:07.  I guess it was not a bad finish time considering the wind and rain.  I was so cold that my face and hands were so red.  At the end there was a breakfast for all finishers but I did not stick around.  I am SO GLAD I changed my registration to the 10K.

So my running friends, how do YOU run against the wind?

Bank of America Shamrock Shuffle

This morning I ran my first race of the year…the Bank of America Shamrock Shuffle.  I love this race.  It is an 8K and have been running it since 2006.  I missed it last year because it was snowing…bad.  Anyway, my goal was to finish it in 52 minutes but unfortunately did not make it but instead finished it in 53 minutes.  That is OK.  I am not going to beat myself up over it.  It was a HOT, HOT day and most importantly I enjoyed my free beer at the end.  In previous years I always left as soon as I was done because it was either cold or raining so I never had a chance to enjoy my free beer.  🙂

I need to stop signing up for races.  Yes, I am obsessed and have signed up for almost every race there is.  I am doing a 10 mile run on the 16th, a 10K on the 23rd, a 5k on the 30th, and then a half marathon on May 1st.  Sigh, that is only in April. 

I am so excited about the Boston Marathon.  No, I am not running in the race but I plan to one year.  I have a L-O-N-G way to go but I know that if I really want it I can make it happen.  I admire every single runner than runs 8 minute miles.  I have tried and can only run it for about a quarter of a mile.  One day I will look back to this posting and laugh when I read about how I struggled with 8 minute miles.

Back to work tomorrow.  Counting till June 20th which is the last day of school.  Yay!!

Kitty Princess

I know I wanted to write about things that make me smile.  However, I do need to write about something that happened that makes me really sad.  As you know, my cat, Princess, had a tumor and had not been eating for over a month.  Well, it just so happens that she died on Saturday.  I knew it was going to happen but knowing it and when it actually happens are very different.

When I found out she had a tumor I had the option of putting her to sleep but refused to do it.  I felt like I would be killing her.  I decided to bring her home to take care of her and shower her with my love.  Because she was not eating anything she was losing so much weight.  She looked so different.  I asked myself if she was suffering but it did not look like it because she was not “crying” or meowing.  I cherished each day that went because I knew that it could be her last day.

On Saturday morning around 4am I woke up to use the bathroom and noticed she was on my bedroom floor.  So I picked her up and put her on my bed where we both slept in till about 8 or so.  For the next hour or so she would hardly move and was just so weak.  I knew that it was almost time.  I was not sure if I should go to the vet so I called to find out.  I was told that the vets were busy and that someone would call me back.  Well, I then decided to go in on Monday morning to put her at rest.  My 8 year old nephew agreed with me because he said that that way I would spend more time with her.   However, later on I had a feeling that she was not going to make it past that day.  I became very emotional and began crying.  I held her in my arms and it was there that she took her last breath before dying peacefully.

Just thinking about her makes me sad but I find comfort knowing that she is at peace now and hopefully eating a lot of good.  I also know that she had 13 GREAT years with me in which I cherished and showered her with my love.  I am glad that I did not put her down last month but instead brought her home with me.  I am even more glad that I was home when it happened and that she died in my arms.  I got to see her and talk to her before she left.  Every day I feared that she would pass when I was at school and would come home to find her dead.  One of my friends warned me that the latter would be more traumatic for me.

I decided to cremate her and I am supposed to pick up her ashes on Friday.  I know that having her ashes at home will make me feel better.  I know that everything I just wrote may be childish to you and that is OK.  Unless you have a pet you will not know what it is like to love him/her so much and it is so painful to know that your pet will not be waiting for you in the morning or when you come home.

I have my moments when I do feel sad but overall I am happy because I was with her till the end and I know she is in a better place.


Running alone in the dark.

I joined the Fleet Feet Running Group and today went to the store for my first group/fun run.  At first I did not wan to go because I was tired and just did not feel like running outside.  Well, I made myself get ready and out the door.

I got to the store around 6:10 or so (the run started at 6:30) so I had time to browse through the store and buy more SmartWool socks.  I just LOVE those!!!  Anyway, 6:30 came and it was time to start running.  Well, my Garmin was not working properly because I turned it on inside the store so it could not connect to a satellite.  I did not realize this until I got outside and by then it was too late.  Since I was new to these runs I was not clear about the running route.  I met a girl that I told myself I was just going to follow.  However, by 6:30 it was dark and she was running faster than me so I lost her.  I ran till I think I was the last one from the group on the path and then I turned around to get back to the store.  Did I mention that it was dark?  Oh man!  I could not see where I was going.  At one point I knew I was lost and had to stop to look around and figure out where I was.  There was some light from the street lights but not enough for me to know exactly where I was going.  The fact that it was dark did push me to fun faster in order to get back to the store sooner.  Whew!  I finally got back and bought more stuff for me.

So this run was a new experience for me.  Running in the dark is not fun.  I did not feel safe.  There was a girl in front of me running with her headphones.  I don’t know if I can do that.  I mean, I do run with headphones outside but there is plenty of light for me to see my surroundings.  I guess running alone at night and in an unfamiliar area made me uncomfortable.  I don’t know if I will go back next week.  I think I might be better off running in the treadmill or running earlier (while there is still light) by the airport.

What has been your experience(s) running at night?