Saturday, May 31, 2008

It's getting close now!!

I have my bib. I have my chip. I am official!

We went to the Expo today and I have to say I was pretty excited to get all my stuff. For a while, I felt a little giddy. We walked around and looked at all the vendors and grabbed all the free stuff we could ;-) They had some great apparel for sale. The one I liked a lot said Rock n Roll Marathon Finisher. Lisa talked about buying one. I said, "you are going to buy that before you finish????" I admit it; I am superstitious. I can't buy something like that until I can actually say I am a FINISHER. I plan on buying one tomorrow after the race! Lisa did buy a RnR Marathon pint glass because she knew no matter what, she would be drinking a beer out of it tomorrow night.

For anyone that is interested, my bib number is 14069. You can track the results online at by clicking the "live results" tab. The race starts at 6:30 a.m. Pacific time. They should be giving 5K, 10K, 10 mile, 13.1 mile and 20 mile split times.

I am still fighting a head cold, but it has settled mostly in my nose. I will carry some tissue with me and do my best. No stinkin' rhinovirus is going to keep me from crossing that finish line. Thanks for all the suggestions on how to beat this silly thing....


Friday, May 30, 2008

Doing the best that I can...

That is my six word memoir for today. I was tagged by Terri (Middle-of-the-Pack Girl) to find six words that describe my life. This was actually a difficult task. I am in a crossroads in my life as to how I see myself. I thought that running the marathon would make it more clear, but I haven't figured it out yet. I enjoyed the exercise of thinking about how I define myself and I came up with a few choices:
  • Successful career before starting family. happiness.
  • Created a family with my soulmate.
  • A mother. A wife. A runner. [this one doesn't really describe my life as much as it describes the past five months. I am consumed with running right now because of this marathon, but I don't know if running will be part of my memoir this time next year....kwim?]
  • Getting the most out of life [I like this one, but I am not sure I am there yet. I think I could get even more out of life. I just need to push some of my negativity out. I should follow Terri's advice with this one. I need to nag at my hubby less and take things as they come instead of worrying about them. I hope this will be my memoir in a few years. I suppose this is my goal memoir. Is there such a thing?]

So I decided on "doing my best that I can." At first glance it seems like an excuse or a cop out phrase. But when I look at my life, I realize that in every phase of my life I have done my best without holding myself to insane, unreachable standards. Could I have done better? Yes. Would I have enjoyed myself as much? Not even close. So my best is what is best for me and my life... not what is best by other people's standards.

I was a really good student. Could I have been an outstanding student? Sure. In order to have been a better student, I would have had to give up on much of the social and extracurricular things that helped to make me what I am today. I had fantastic grades through graduate school while excelling at my job. However, I really had no life. A relationship crumbled and I remember barely having time to eat. My best, in that case, wasn't really the best for me.

I had a successful career. Could I have gone further and done more? You bet. But to do that I would have had to work longer hours, relocated to undesirable parts of the country and foregone spending quality time with my family. My career could have taken on a bigger role in my life, however something bigger and better came along--a wonderful husband and family.

I'm a good mother. Can I be a better mother? Of course, and I am figuring that one out every day. Some days I feel like a fantastic mother. Other days I feel like the worst mother in the world. I take it one day at a time. I know that I will never be one of those mothers who keep a perfect house, home school the kids and chair every event. But I will keep my kids clean and safe, read to them, engage them and help them with homework and be involved as much as I feel I have the energy to do.

Doing the best that I can doesn't mean being being satisfied with mediocrity. I need to constantly set my own reasonable standards higher and higher. There are definitely days when I am not doing the best that I can and I just need to do better the next day. Luckily, I am pretty good at recognizing my faults and making adjustments. Kenny's pretty good at recognizing these faults and suggesting adjustments...LOL.

So to relate all this to running.... on Sunday I will run the best race I can. No regrets. No excuses. If there is a next time, I will do even better. That's the way all this stuff works, right?

So now I am supposed to tag other blogs. Like Alissa, I don't have too many other running bloggers that I know who haven't already done this. I will tag my friends with non-running blogs, if they haven't already been tagged. So, Penny, Hilly and Bean-- you are officially tagged. I also challenge my friends who read this to sit down and think of their own memoirs. Laura, Lisa, Jen, Heather, Janet, Emma, yourselves a favor and come up with six words. If you are inspired, e-mail it to me or post it here. I am interested to see what you all have to say...

the rules:
Write your own six word (max) memoir.
Post it on your blog (or e-mail) and include a visual illustration if you want.
Link to the person who tagged you in your post.
Tag at least five more blogs.
Leave a comment on the tagged blogs with an invitation to play

Keeping it positive....

Thanks to my husband, Kenny, and Terri's blog entry, I am reminded to keep things positive. This morning as I crawled back into bed, Kenny asked what was up and I told him. I kept saying,"I can't get sick." He told me that a mantra like that would add more stress.

My new mantra for the weekend is "I AM STRONG AND HEALTHY."

'nuff said.

freaking out!!

I am up at 3:30 in the morning because I can't sleep. Is it because of marathon anxiety? NO. It's because my freakin' throat is KILLING me. I am coming down with some silly virus picked up by my kids. I am sitting here drinking some immunity elixir waiting for Tylenol to kick in so I can go get back to sleep. I can barely swallow.

I CAN'T GET SICK. I CAN'T GET SICK. I CAN'T GET SICK. Mind over matter, right?

I think I am going to cry. Please send healing vibes my way.

Sunday, May 25, 2008

Bittersweet run today...

Today was our last long run before the marathon (we have a couple of short ones scheduled, but I usually do those by myself). I am excited that this long journey has come to an end and we are ready to run this race, but I am sad that the training is over. The four of us really bonded over these last few months. We have really helped each other through it and I can safely say that I wouldn't be looking at running this thing next week if it weren't for each and every one of them.

Jen, Laura, Me and Lisa after our last 8 mile run together...

It is unlikely that all four of us will run together again. :-( I'll probably run with each of them separately and we'll see each other at Stroller Strides, but we won't have that common goal. Lisa is fighting some major back issues and she will likely stop running altogether. Jen will run some shorter runs to keep her legs for her triathlon, but nothing over five or six. Laura and I will probably do 8 to 10 miles together on the weekends. I may do some swimming with Jen (and maybe Lisa). But none of that will really be the same as the journey we have just completed together....

We ran eight easy miles today. I never thought I would type THAT sentence--eight easy miles. It really was easy! We didn't run too fast or too slow (just under 10 minute miles). Ironically, check out the picture from the Resolution Run 15K in March compared to today. We ran the 15K (which is about 9 miles) at a faster pace (about 9:30/mile) but looked much more worn out (but giddy with excitement at our longest run to date)
March 8, 2008
And here is a close-up today. We look like we have barely run! To be fair, today was a cool day, but I still say that our fitness has increased a TON since March!
May 25, 2008

My hamstring was a bit uncomfortable, but it didn't hurt. It didn't get worse at all during the run. I mentally needed to run a bit after taking all last week off to shake off the cobwebs a bit. I am icing my hamstring right now to try to minimize any irritation. If I have to run 26.2 miles with it feeling the way it did today, I'll be fine. I will take it easy this week and focus on resting (and eating!) before the big day.

This entire experience has been so positive, I am ready to set the next goal and work towards it. I want to thank my girls for a great ride! Thank you all for pushing me and never letting me doubt myself. I know that the big hurdle is in a week, but I already feel like I have made it. I am just going to enjoy this week and get the most out of the end of this journey.....

Friday, May 23, 2008

How ironic is this?

The National Geographic Channel is airing Stonehenge Decoded on June 1. I can't get over the uncanny timing of it. I'll definitely have to set the DVR for that one!

Shout out to one of my cyber running buddies....

Terri (Middle of the Pack Girl) is running a 7.2 mile race this weekend. I just wanted to send her positive vibes since she was mentally prepared to run a 10K until the race organizers changed it this week. It is funny... I am as excited for her as I would be one of my friends. Through my recent obsession with reading running blogs, I found a person who I have made a connection with. We seem to have similar outlooks on life....

I know you are "unplugged" on the Cape, but GOOD LUCK!!!! You know I'll be checking your blog to see how it was. I bet you'll surprise yourself.

Thursday, May 22, 2008

I can't watch this video without getting tears in my eyes...

I am really getting excited. I have been wasting some time today searching for videos of the Rock-n-Roll Marathon. I cry during all of them, thinking about crossing that finish line ( I am a big sap). It really looks like a lot of fun though. I am so happy that this marathon is my first one. My number one goal with this thing is to ENJOY every minute and take advantage of all the entertainment along the way. Did I mention that they hand out beer at the end???

Here is another one in two parts:

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Cut today's run short...

I only ran about a mile today instead of the three on the schedule. I'll try to do a few tomorrow. My left hamstring is really bothering me. I think I have strained it a bit and I don't want it to get worse. I think it started during the downhillsegments of the hills on the 20 mile run. If it felt like this a month ago, I would have run through the discomfort. The pain is not enough to stop my running. However, with less than two weeks to go before the big race, I don't want to take any chances on injury. I'm going to ice it a few times today and stretch more.

I had a sports massage yesterday with a great therapist and I hope that helps the healing process. My shins (and just about everything else) feel GREAT. I had never had a therapeutic massage before- only relaxation. I enjoyed it much more than I thought I would. I scheduled another one with her the week after the marathon. We decided that we would wait a couple of days after the race so that we could pinpoint any trouble areas rather than just doing an all-over circulation massage.

So the tapering has begun. And thank body really seems to need to recover. I want to be 100% on June 1!

Monday, May 19, 2008


My iPod was found!! My running companion is coming back to me. It was folded up in Jen's stroller and she didn't know it. I am so glad. I won't be able to log my ten mile run from yesterday (which is a bummer because I think we ran the first half pretty quickly), but I can upload the two runs from last week. They weren't particularly good runs, but I would still like to see how I did and add them to my totals.

Sunday, May 18, 2008

When did a 10 mile run become "an easy 10"?

We were scheduled to run 9, but the Mission Bay loop we did was over ten so we did ten instead (we were going to walk the last mile, but I felt good so I ran longer and only walked about a half a mile). Jen actually ran eighteeen!! GO JEN. She is going to catch up on the training she missed out on due to her achilles trouble.

I didn't feel 100% but I felt pretty darn good. I think that ten miles is a good distance for me. I hope I can stay motivated to run that far on Sundays. It was funny.... somebody asked me on Friday what we were running on Sunday and I answered, "just nine." I received a bit of an eyebrow lift on that answer. A few months ago, "just nine" would have NEVER been in my vocabulary. When we did the 15K in early March, it was the longest that three out of four of us had ever run. I was REALLY nervous before the race. Now a nine mile run is easy enough to tack an extra mile onto it. I can't believe how far my fitness has come.

The only bummer was that I didn't have my iPod. Luckily, Jen ran with me and we chatted the entire way, so I never got bored. As we ran along the ocean, she talked a lot about how to swim in the ocean (I am thinking about doing a triathlon). My iPod is missing :-( I took it to playgroup so all the kids could dance. As I was unloading everything out of the stroller into the car, it wasn't there. I went back to the playgroup area and it wasn't there. I am hoping that it ended up with one of the other moms. Kids are known to move things from stroller to stroller. I am SO BUMMED. Not only do I enjoy my music while I run (it is a necessity on the boring runs by myself in my neighborhood), but it had two runs from my Nike+ that hadn't been uploaded. So including the eighteen mile run I forgot the sensor, I have at least 36 miles that won't show up on my Nike log. I was really working toward that 500 mile mark. Damn!

We have two weeks until the big race. I am more excited than nervous at this point (I am sure that will change). I am going to focus on taking it easy and making sure I am 100%. My runs will be easy ones and I won't push myself. I have a deep tissue massage scheduled for tomorrow. I am a little nervous about that because I am a weeny when it comes to pain. It will all be worth it though....

Thursday, May 15, 2008

I added a picture from our 18 mile run....

Lisa sent me another picture from her phone from last week. I added it to my post. I really like it because we look pretty happy and proud of ourselves. This was taken right after we finished our 18 mile run in Coronado.

Tuesday, May 13, 2008


It is such a huge accomplishment, no matter how you look at it. For some reason, I didn't feel this way after 17 or 18. But 20!! I just wanted to walk around and tell random people, "hey, I just ran 20 miles."

It definitely wasn't easy. I had quite a few aches and pains. Things that hurt me before didn't bother me and new parts hurt where they didn't hurt before. I felt it more the next day than any other run. BUT... I had some kick at the end, which tells me that I could probably go another six miles!

We did a route we found online called "Tour of San Diego." It took us through areas of San Diego I have never been in. We ran along Sunset Cliffs, which is a beautiful stretch along the ocean and then over to Point Loma. We ran on Harbor Drive along the Bay. We turned into the city and went up some hills, turning and running towards Balboa Park. We then ran through Hillcrest, Mission Hills and Old Town. We finished up where we began at Hospitality Point in Mission Bay Park. The scenery was awesome. The hills SUCKED. There were two significant hills: a steep one into the campus of Point Loma Nazarene and the other up 6th street between Ash and Upas. While I had to walk up the one in Point Loma, the one up 6th street sucked more energy out of me (probably because it was around mile 12 or 13!)

I have to give props to Lisa, though.... She really came through for me. She told us on Friday that she didn't think she wanted to run the entire 20 miles. Her knees were bothering her and she didn't want to push it. She was going to run as far as she could and then call her husband to come get her. She thought she would go about 14 miles; I am pretty sure she was only mentally prepared for 14 miles. As we were going along, she said that she was feeling better than she expected. I kept telling her, "you can do it... just think how good you'll feel afterwards." Between 15 and 16 miles, Lisa said to me, "I'll make a deal with you.... I'll do my best to make it to the end with you, if you agree to stop and stretch with me a few times between now and then." "Deal!" Lisa pushed herself so that I didn't have to run by myself (Laura was way ahead of us).

We ran into some other runners around mile 18. They were with the YMCA running club and had their own little water station and offered to share with us. We refilled our water bottles and double checked the directions back to Hospitality Point. Their trainer was really nice and gave us a lot of encouragement.
As we were on the bike path heading back toward Ocean Beach, Lisa decided that she wanted to walk a little ways. I didn't want to check the mileage on the Nike+ (I probably should have) because I was afraid of what I would hear. Lisa and I chatted (without my headphones on) a bit about how to get back over the river to go to Hospitality Point. We agreed to see each other at the end and I ran off as she walked for a bit. I was starting to get discouraged because I hadn't heard the one mile notification from the Nike+ lady. I was thinking to myself, "holy cow, how much longer??" Apparently, I missed the one mile notice, because when my Nike+ lady told me through my iPod that I had 400 meters to go, I actually cried. Seriously... I had tears rolling down my cheeks. I am going to sob like a baby when I cross that finish line in three weeks.

I'm BACK!!!!!!!

After a week of exile, my running blog is back. Phew... I feel whole again. I didn't realize how important this was to me until Blogger mistakenly tagged this as a spam blog. I don't even know what a spam blog is! When I clicked on the link last week and saw the words that the blog had been removed, I was in tears. There are blood, sweat and tears in these posts. I thought they were lost forever.

So when I get a chance, I will update on my runs this past week. It was a great week. Thanks for all the support, everyone. It meant a lot that I wasn't the only one missing this journal......

Sunday, May 11, 2008

Training schedule...

Since I have joined the Running Blog Network and other runners can see my blog, I thought it might be interesting to see our training schedule. I have been really happy with it. Before I took on this journey, the farthest I had run was 10K. Five mile long runs for the first few weeks and six mile runs after that made it look so much less intimidating. The increase in mileage was so gradual, before we knew it we were running insanely long runs. There were times when some or all of us felt like we were over-training a bit (in the later weeks), but we made sure that we listened to our bodies and made changes accordingly.

We have kept with the schedule generally, but like I said, we did make some changes. Changes were made for scheduling purposes, health reasons and because we are all moms with families and things happen.... Here is my attempt to show the various changes that I made to my schedule:

Sunday, May 4, 2008

I really need a checklist for these early mornings...

I forgot to plug my Nike+ receiver into my iPod!!! I grabbed the iPod and headphones and left the receiver sitting by the computer. For those of you unfamiliar with the Nike+ system, you need the sensor on/in your shoe and the receiver connected to your iPod. What this means is that the entire run won't be logged in my totals!! I am SO bummed! I didn't really need the real-time updates today, because we had a good map for the distance we went and I wasn't concerned about the pace. BUT... I have logged over 260 miles and to miss 18 is HUGE. Wah! That is my whine for the day.

On to discussing today's run.... We ran 18 miles in a little over three hours. We stopped a couple of times to stretch etc. so our pace is right on. My run was not nearly as good as Monday's 17 miles, but not nearly as bad as the 16 miler three weeks ago. I had more aches and pains in the latter half than I would have liked, but I finished relatively strong. My shin/calf started out with a little discomfort, but I barely noticed it later in the run because other parts of my legs were hurting. My legs started aching all over again and I am wondering if it has something to do with nutrition. I tried to eat a bit more yesterday and push the fluids, but I don't know...

Laura and Lisa had decent runs today, too. Laura finally seems healthy and is back to her old pace (I actually ran ahead of her on Thursday's run for the first time... which isn't fair since she had a sinus infection). She commented that she doubts she could have done that pace for an additional eight miles and thinks she should hold back at the 10-minute-mile pace for a bit longer to conserve her energy for later. Lisa struggled through some knee pain, but finished strong after a couple of stretching stops. She said that she knew she could have finished a marathon today....even if it meant walking a couple of miles and running the last few. The first picture was taken with Lisa's phone at 9 miles. The second one was after we finished with the Coronado bridge in the background. I LOVE getting such an early start and having these beautiful early morning shots. It helps that we have the gorgeous terrain of San Diego to run through....

I think I am done with long out-and-backs. The last stretch is a killer every time. I would much rather do a loop. Today we ran the Silver Strand We started at Tidelands Park under the Coronado bridge and ran along Glorieta Bay down the Strand to Imperial Beach. It was a nice enough run, but it was less ocean than I had imagined, since we ran on the East side of the highway and the ocean was often behind a fence on the other side of the road. The last couple of miles were tough as I was recognizing landmarks and realizing that we had a ways to go.

Could I have done 26 today? I'm not sure. I know I could have done twenty. I bet the adrenaline of the race will help to push me to those last few miles. Did I think I could ever run 18 when I started this whole thing? Heck no. It's pretty cool how far we've come.

Thursday, May 1, 2008


Music has become part of my life again. For years, I didn't buy any new CDs and just listened to whatever was playing on the radio. Ever since I got into running again, I have regained my interest in music, both old and new. I love how it affects my mood and my motivation to run.

I am having fun with my running playlist. Before my 17 mile run, I rearranged my songs to freshen it up. I also tried something different. I put a couple classical songs right around the two hour mark. I had Sarah Brightman & Andrea Bocelli's Time to Say Goodbye followed by Music of the Night from Phantom of the Opera sung by my favorite American Idol *blush* David Cook. Those two songs plugged in between some harder rock selections were the PERFECT thing for my run. Those songs are very powerful and they gave me a new energy and changed my perspective. They are a sharp contrast to some of the other songs I have like songs by POD, Nickelback, Nine Inch Nails and Saliva. I also have Queen, Styx and Alphaville....LOL.... I love my eclectic taste.

While I love running and chatting with my girls, I also look forward to my alone time now. The thought of a long run by myself doesn't send me into a panic anymore. I am officially a runner now. I think that after this race I may run just to run. But I will have to have my music, of course.


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