Wednesday, December 17, 2008

First is the worst, second is the best....

As I sit here not going for my morning run because everything was covered in ice when I went outside this morning, I started to check out info on the Cox Providence Marathon in May.  Below is the course.  I can't believe we are going to do this again, I haven't forgotten how terrible the Breakers was.  Not only am I training differently this time around I will do some other things differently.  List is below:
1.  Take the Monday after off
2.  All laundry will be done, folded and put away
3.  New sheets on the bed the morning of the race
4.  Food shopping done before the marathon and prepared meals in the fridge
5.  Massage scheduled Tuesday after race
6.  Beer waiting for me at end
7.  Movies in DVD player upstairs
8.  Benadryl dogs so they will sleep during recovery (alright this is too much but I'll have to do something so they will sleep the whole time, maybe potty train them so they don't have to go outside)

So below is the link, note that most of the race is NOT in Providence.  I'm not real happy about how much of it is on the bike path, but it should be flatter than the Breakers was.  It is exciting that we'll be running over the "new" 195, although that's later in the race so I'm guessing I won't care at all where we are running.  Here's to training!!

Sunday, December 7, 2008

Back in the Saddle

Ran my first 10k today, 56:41!!  Not too shabby.  We got sucked out with the crowd and had an 8:23 first mile, after that we settled in and did well from there.  Our 5k time was 26:40 and I would take that as well, almost makes me mad that we haven't done 5k in so long!!  The next step in our running tour was a meeting with the coach.  What did we discuss you ask..marathon training!!  I know, it hasn't been even 2 months since the Breakers but I'm ready to run another.  I don't know why, because I haven't forgotten how terrible the first marathon felt.  Here we sit 22 weeks until the Cox Marathon in Providence.  It's funny because after reviewing our training for the Breakers and talking to Bob I realize that we had NO right to be out on that course.  We did 5 runs over 10 miles and only 3 over 15 miles.  It surprising that we survived it.  This time around I would like to be able to complete the course without limping though the last 10k.  We are starting the training tomorrow, starting with 35 miles per week topping out at 50-60 miles per week.  If we are successful I will have run 2 marathons before finishing grad school!!  I'll keep you posted and if anyone wants to join with us, the more the merrier!!

Thursday, December 4, 2008


I'm wondering if I have lost my mind.  Today at work I suddenly had the desire to run the full Cox Marathon this May.  Ummm...WHY!?!?  It's not like I have forgotten the pain the Breakers caused.  Unfortunately this thought has not left me and it's looking like we will start training for it.  There are about 5 months for us to get ready, way more time then we actually put into training for the Breakers.  Training updates to be posted in the near future, please pray for my calves (they didn't like this last time around)....

Saturday, November 29, 2008


...or campus security.  Regardless today was our closest brush with the law during a run.  Joe and Sue were stopped in there tracks and scolded for running in a non-running area.  It does bring to my mind one of the biggest debates, running or jogging.  The sign stated no jogging and they were told no jogging on campus, but I didn't head out for a 9 mile jog this afternoon.  I went for a 9 mile run.  I thought we should have tried to argue our point with them, but instead we extended our route and made it back to the car with no more trouble.

Monday, November 24, 2008

Bad Day

Hello all, it's been a while.  Sorry for slacking, I've been busy baking but that's for another blog.  So how is the running going?  Until today, fairly well.  Track twice a week, the road 4 other days a week.  Indoors I have been kicking some ass and proud of it.  Focused still on beating Joe's ass in Bermuda.  I was starting to get cocky about it, until this am.  I don't know what happened.  Completed a 2 mile warm up outdoors and hit the track.  We did an 800 at a 3:40 pace and hit the wall, it was terrible.  I'm thinking it's a combo of running too much and standing at the stove for 14 hours in a weekend.  Won't be at the track until next Thursday, so I have some time to heal.  I do worry, in the summer I hit a wall and ran away from the track.  What will prevent that from happening this time around...watching Joe cross the finish line after me!!

Monday, November 10, 2008

Moving Indoors

Well I have successfully completed 3 indoor track sessions.  I hate track, I hate it alot.  The reason I ran the marathon this fall was to avoid the outdoor track, it worked.  I do recognize the importance, I need to beat Joe at the mile race in Bermuda!  It hurts and it's hot and there is a 60 year old man screaming at me to move faster, again I really hate it.  Recruiting has been successful, I now have 4 women who run at about my pace.  As much as it sucks it's unbearable doing it alone.  

Today was the first attempt at what the mile would feel like.  After a nice warm up we did a half mile a full mile and ended with a faster half mile.  The first half was at a 3:57 pace, I thought I was going to die, but survived it.  Then we started the mile (8 times around), Mo and I broke free of the other women in our group.  I just kept my eyes on her ass and thought "just stay with her".  After 4 laps I lost count.  At one point the coach shouted 2 more, all I could do was curse loudly (it's hard to whisper when you are going all out).  The nice thing about the indoor track is that it's smaller, mentally easier to convince one's self to go one more time.  The last lap was awful, I can't even explain it.  Finished in 7:58!!  I'll take it and worked hard to be able to say so.  The last half was terrible as well, but after swearing to myself I would only do 2 laps I finished the 4th with a 3:56 pace.  Nice work!!  I would like to be able to get a 7:45 pace for the mile, Joe is bigger and faster...but he's not training on the track.  

Let's see how things progress, I'm pretty confident that if things continue I will be wiping the asphalt with him in Bermuda!!

Sunday, November 2, 2008

When will it end??

I'm beginning to think that one never really recovers from a marathon.  Today we did 6 miles, the furthest since the race 3 weeks ago.  The way I am limping around here you would think I did a 15 miler.  I do think it's time for new shoes that that will help a little.  It raises the question what to do with the shoes that carried me for 26.2 miles?  I'm really thinking of hanging them on my mudroom wall.  I can't just throw them away.  I'll post a picture of their final resting place once it is determined.  Tomorrow begins the dreaded indoor track season.  I have no choice to participate.  We are doing a mile race in Bermuda and there is no way I will allow Joe to beat me at this one.  He's chosen not to participate in track, so you know I'll kick his ass!!

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Sunday 5 miler

So we headed out today for our longest run post marathon, a whopping 5 miles.  It was nice to catch up with some running club people that we haven't seen since the race.  Not too nice to hear the stories of how we sounded when people found us!  It got pretty ugly for a few miles.  The 5 felt nice today, a little tiring but we are getting there.  Trying to decide what I will run this week.  I'm thinking I'll try 3 tomorrow and 4 on Tues, with 3 on Thurs.  Might be a little ambitious, but I'm focused on getting my mileage back up there for Bermuda.  

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Trying to establish a new routine

So today is one week out.  The recovery is going well, no lasting pains.  Two runs were completely successfully.  If anything I have found I'm still tired and the legs poop out pretty quick.  Joe's knee bothered him on Friday am.  Tomorrow we are on schedule for our longest run since the marathon, 5 miles.  I'm hopeful that we'll get through it, just may take a while.  What I'm most amazed about is how this marathon seemed to be the switch from summer running to winter running.  Since last week it has been cold in the mornings and I've been running in pants and long sleeves with a hat.  I can't help but dread what the next few months hold for us.  The wind is the worst part.  Oh well, if it was always nice weather we would not value it as much.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Climbing back on the horse

So today was my first time back on the roads since the marathon.  Very tenderly I took my first steps waiting for my knees to protest, never happened.  The thighs were tight and I moved slower than I have in the past.  We did 3 miles and will attempt 4 tomorrow.  Plan to meet with the coach next week to start getting geared up for Bermuda.  

I've done some reflecting on the marathon.  People have asked if I'm pleased with my time.  Of course I am, a year and a half ago 3 miles was a stretch for me.  The first time you run a race you run it to see if you can the next time you run it to do it better.  Lets see what I have to say this time next year, there maybe room for more constructive criticism then.  For now there is nothing but smiles!

Sunday, October 19, 2008

One Day Out

After completing the most physical exhausting event of my life I have spent all day in a horizontal position other than 3 hours today.  I've been reviewing recovery plans and plan on attempting a swim on Tues or Thurs.  Was going to try tomorrow but am worried I won't be able to get into the pool, nevermind out of it.  Going up and down stairs has been the worst.  I am also surprisingly thirsty.  I still can't believe that we actually finished it. What a rush.  If I can ever walk again I plan to run another one.  If anyone knows where to find a morphine drip give me a call.

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Mission Accomplished

Proud to report I am now part of the 1% of the population who has completed a marathon.  Just to be clear the marathon is a standard distance of 26.2, and yes that is the same as Boston!

We started at 8, I was so nervous, must have gone to the bathroom 5 times in the hour before we started.  The first half went well.  I felt strong and we had a great pace.  Few periods of nausea but no major issues.  The second half was a gueling as I had expected.  At one point I turned to my husband in tears about not wanting to run any longer.  He gave me a pat on the shoulder and told me to keep going.  The pain was unbearable, like nothing I had ever felt.  Pain from the bottoms of my feet to halfway up my back.  The support on the course was great, the water stops were well equipped.  I consumed 5 Gu's, tons of water, gatorade and a dixie cup of Skittles.  The miles from 21-26 were brutal, never ending.  I survived the dreaded mile 22!  We had reinforcements arrive via bicycle at mile 24 and the bitching ended and the adrenaline flowed.  Joe's brother-in-law and a friend met us a mile 25 and ensured we got up the last very long hill.  His sister ran us into the finish and we crossed together with arms in the air and smiles from ear to ear.

Since the finish I have been laying in bed attempting to sleep and unable although feeling completely exhausted.  I'm very sore but feeling very accomplished and proud.  A year and a half ago I never ran, a year ago the furthest I had raced was 5.5 and now I have completed a marathon.  Is there anything beyond reach?

Lessons learned...believe in yourself and trust that with will and determination anything can be reached.


I'm carbed up!  Ready to run, or at least that is what I tell myself.  Didn't sleep much last night.  Joe told me a story about some guy who ran a marathon and dropped out at mile 22, not what I needed to hear the night before.  I'm trying not to 2nd guess myself, but sometimes the doubts are there.  It's funny a year ago I was a part of a relay team for this event.  I ran the anchor, 5.6 miles.  I was sooo nervous, it was the longest distance I had ever raced.  Here I am a year later in the same predicament.  I am a determined strong willed stubborn person and will run this race and have a good time with it.  I decided to wear my running skirt rather than shorts.  It's all about the pockets at this time.  It's chilly so I have a long sleeved tee over my racing tank.  Dry clothes are packed.  Only time will tell.  Wish me luck and throw a prayer my way...

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Oh God!

It's Thursday, 2 days to go.  Things are following along nicely.  There is nothing else I can do to prepare.  Missed my run today, but not nervous, plan on an easy 3 tomorrow.  As I sit here procrastination on a paper that needs to be written, I go check out  There is a clip from the Chicago Marathon of a man who collapses at the finish line and can't get up.  He tries to crawl and eventually 2 men stop and assist him to the finish.  WHAT IF THIS HAPPENS TO ME!!!!!!!!  Oh God, I'm really starting to panic over here.  Starting to 2nd guess all of my training.  In some ways I feel ready to go and in others I wonder who I think I am.  I am a person who does not look like a runner.  I don't eat like a runner.  I don't talk or think like a runner.  Only runner's complete marathons so what am I doing 2 days away from a marathon?  This is all very overwhelming...

Monday, October 13, 2008


5 days out, I keep checking the weather.  Currently forecasted for 58 and a 30% chance of showers.  If the temp was slightly lower I would be pleased.  Still deciding on what to wear, thinking about the old racing shirt and the running skirt, but no decisions at this time.  Also having the great music debate.  Not sure if I'll have my ipod or not.  I enjoy running without my music but am worried that I will want the distraction.  Might give it to a fan and pick it up at the half way mark.  Starting to get really nervous about how much this is going to hurt.  Am I really ready?  I guess you never feel fully prepared for your first one.  

Friday, October 10, 2008

Oh God, What did we do

So I went to the massage therapist this am.  After 30 minutes of digging at my muscle fibers I was diagnosed with a strain and given the go ahead to run.  The funny part was when he suggested I add salt to my diet.  Clearly the guy doesn't know me that well.  If I added any more salt to my diet I would be walking around holding a salt lick!  Since getting the news we have officially registered for the race.  Feeling like I should go throw up right after I hit the confirm button.  Nothing left to do know but wait.  8 long days to go!!!!

Pins and Needles

1 hour till I find out the extent of my injuries.  Yesterday I tried out 3 miles and was pretty tender (physically and emotionally).  What will it mean if he says no?  Worse what if he says it's a go?  Am I ready for 26.2?  We were talking over dinner what running a marathon means to us.  For me it has been a very ugly road.  There is nothing nice about getting up every morning for the past 4 months and hitting the pavement. My body has been covered in cuts since this started.  There have also been really high moments, and moments with friends that I wouldn't have had without this training.  It has been pure determination and stubborn will to prove that I can stick to it.  Let's see what the next step holds.  I'm heading out for another tender 3 before the appt.

Monday, October 6, 2008

Still treading water

I have been training for the Breakers Marathon for the majority of the last 3-4 months.  Who knows why I decided to go for a marathon while finishing up grad school, my competitive edge or my need to cause myself pain and utter exhaustion?  Here we are none the less.  

Last week my calf started cramping and in true Sarah style I choose to ignore it.  Days go by and the pain increases until Friday arrives and I can't walk right.  A google search later ends with me on the phone to my coach, who tells me what I already know.  REST, REST and more REST.  

Normally I would ignore him as well, but my big day is 14 days away.  I can't limp my way through 26.2 miles.  I listen and what a shocker, my leg gets better slowly!  Today I call the doc, hoping for an early appt.  No luck!  Friday is the earliest.  

Not a big deal you think?!?  Until I found myself bouncing down the same set of stairs that on Friday looked like Mount Everest.  I want to RUN again!!  I was told before that pain is the last to show up and the first to leave.  

Common sense tells me to stay in the pool until Friday, but my running shoes are calling my name, "come on, lets test it out, no one will know".  I can't make you any promises that tomorrow's entry won't have a report about my running, but I will try to make the right decision.........

(besides I'm in a bad mood, nothing fixes a funk like a few miles of pavement)

Sunday, October 5, 2008

First Time

I'm new to this, so no guarantees.  Let's see where this takes us over time.