Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Feeling Nostalgic

This morning we slept in until almost 9:30! Our room is just pitch black and there's no clock in there so there's no way to tell what time it was. I had this plan to get up, get some waffles from the free breakfast downstairs then go running and have plenty of time to shower before we checked out. Well, this is what I get for over planning everything! Breakfast was over at 9, and we had to check out by 10 so we had to just hurry and get out of there.

We went over to Pete's mom and dad's house to see everyone again before we left, and have cinnamon rolls. I had one roll, then headed out for my run. I'm kind of off schedule for my new plan, but that's ok. I had 2 runs to choose from, and I decided to run over to the track at Dixie College to do 400 meter intervals.

I went to college at Dixie, and that track is the first place I ever really ran. I would go in the evenings with my roommates who were tough soccer girls, and I remember being so amazed when I worked up to 2 miles.

So, after running to the track which took 6 minutes, I did one nice easy lap to finish warming up before starting my intervals. I'd do a fast lap, then a slow recovery lap. I really tried to do my fast laps in 2:00. Here are my times:
  1. 2:06
  2. 2:01
  3. 2:00
  4. 2:00 (these ones I thought I was going so fast)
  5. 2:05
  6. 1:51
Some people came just before I did that last one, a guy and a girl and the girl looked like a soccer girl, like my roommates who taught me how to run. I wonder where they are now...

I also stopped before the last one to find a good song to help me go fast. Sweet Caroline, you'll have to wait for the run home. I got a good Muse song going (not all Muse songs will cut it for intervals btw) then did my last lap as fast as I could. I think it also helped that I wanted those people to think I was fast! Ah vanity.

I was very happy with that 1:51 even though I had to walk for a minute when it was over, and I ran home feeling really good! The song I listened to seemed to sum up how I was feeling: "Sweet Caroline...ba ba ba... Good times never seemed so good!"

I ran back the same way I used to walk to the park with Mindy, and a little dog barked at me that I remembered barking at me before. When I got close to Pete's parent's house (across the street from said park), I wasn't ready to quit so I ran up the little hill and around the temple that Pete and I were married in. I just felt so happy, and so glad to be running outside again!

It was cold for St. George, probably in the high 30s and starting to get stormy, but I thought it was a perfect day for a run! Later in the afternoon, it even almost started snowing so we knew we needed to get started driving home because the roads might be bad. It seemed a very fitting end of the trip to listen to Weezer as we left St. George. Every time I listen to the blue album, I can't help remembering dancing to it on an upside down table (???) with those same roommates who I used to run with. Good times.

It did snow most of the way up, but the roads weren't too bad until we got to Salt Lake so that was a relief. When we got home, there was about 5-6 inches of new snow in our driveway, and inside our house it was 41 degrees since we had turned the heater off. It's still getting warmed up, but we had a nice evening sitting in front of the fire. The kids all went to bed with extra blankets and sweaters on. I hope they'll be warm enough! It's so cold here! Yuck. Right now I miss St. George!

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Snow Canyon Ride

My ride today from St. George, through Snow Canyon and back down the highway:


This morning I really wanted to get a bike ride in. We weren't able to find anyone to watch the kids so Pete offered to just stay with them so I could go. I was kind of sad I wouldn't get to ride with him since it's almost our tradition now to do a long ride (or 2) in St. George during the winter. Oh, well, I was happy that I still got to go at all.

I got all ready then noticed that my back tire was really low, but that the stem was broken so I couldn't just pump it up. I had to change the whole tube. What a pain. I really tried to do it myself because I know I need to be able to do it in case of emergency, but it was taking me forever and I was getting really frustrated so Pete finally helped me do it. I suck at changing tires! What would I do without Pete? I wouldn't have been riding my bike up Snow Canyon today if it weren't for him, for so many reasons!

Anyway, I got my tire all fixed and headed out. Three minutes into my ride, I turned up the road to go over the Red Hill. What was I thinking? I Wasn't warmed up at all! It was one of the hardest hills I've done. Ever. And I wasn't warmed up for it. As soon as I started up it, I knew it would hurt, but I still did it. I was really tempted to get off and walk a few times, but I didn't. I pushed through and made it up and over that hill! It was awesome!

#1 (from the map). Um, this picture doesn't really do the hill justice. This is just a small part of it, I had to go all the way over The Red Hill.

#2a. Here is the entrance to Snow Canyon National Park. I just love being able to ride my bike through such beautiful scenery! It was a pretty nice day - overcast, but not too gloomy. It was probably in the low 40s so I would have liked it a little warmer, but I wasn't about to complain. I was so happy to be out on my bike again! It's been way too long!

#2b. Here I am at the entrance to the park, completely forgetting to zoom out before taking this picture...

#3a. This is one view at a little past half-way up the canyon.

#3b. And this is looking the other way from that same spot. It didn't really come out in the picture, but you could see the fence that runs along the bike trail I rode home on at the top of that hill.

I got to the top of the canyon in 1:17. I stopped at the beginning of the bike trail to eat my animal cookies before heading down. We forgot to bring Gatorade or hammer gel or anything, but the cookies and water worked fine for this little ride.

Coming home was really fun and fast! And cold. I was nice and warm for the first part of the ride, especially going up all those hills, but when I started cruising down the bike path at 20 - 30 mph, it got cold quick! It wasn't all down hill, it's got some little roller coaster hills to make it a little more fun, but it was a really cold roller coaster!

Before I knew it, I was back in town and trying to figure out where I'd get some hot chocolate. I wish I would have planned for wanting that after a cold ride! I got to our lovely hotel room, decided to forget the hot chocolate and start a hot bath. Only, I couldn't get the temperature gage to turn, so it ended up being a luke-warm bath. It felt really good on my stiff and numb toes, but the rest of me just kept on shivering! Pete came to pick me up (everyone was at his parents' house) and was like, "You're freezing!" I was just trying to push through it and get dressed, but he reminded me that we had a key to the hot tub! This was a brilliant idea! Sitting in the hot tub for a few minutes warmed me right up, and I felt much better!

It was a really fun ride, I'm glad I went, even if I got really cold at the end. I felt good with the fact that I wasn't tired or sore, though. I could have kept riding. I mostly just wanted it to end because I was freezing.

It was a total of 22.4 miles and I did it in just under 2 hours. About half an hour faster than last year! It wasn't the exact same route, but pretty close.

We had a fun time the rest of the day at Pete's Mom and Dad's house with a bunch of cousins and aunts and uncles. My sister in law (Aunt Kathy) taught Mindy how to knit, and she did really well!

She only got one line done, but it's hard for a 7-year-old to focus on something like that for too long.

Here are Ethan and Elle with their Grandma Jane. We always love to come visit her!

Monday, December 28, 2009

Baby Teeth

Swimming this morning:

I almost went back to bed this morning because I did not sleep well last night. But I knew I would just feel bad if I didn't go, so I went.

200 kick
200 swim
200 pull
200 swim

2 5 x 100 - every 2:00 (goal: 1:50)
  1. 1:40
  2. 1:45
  3. 1:50
  4. 1:53
  5. 1:53
Rest.

I deliberately went slower on the first 100 of the next set. I think it made things worse, though:
  1. 1:50
  2. 1:50
  3. 1:55
  4. 1:57
  5. 2:00
150 cool down - alternating slow and back stroke.

I'm really glad I got my swim in because I didn't get the run in I had wanted because as soon as I got home from the pool, we got ready to drive to St. George. We got here at around 2:30 and stopped at In-N-Out Burger for lunch. We sat down to eat and Ethan's lose tooth fell on his first bite of Fry. The poor kid was so sad about it! He was like, "I don't want my tooth to fall out!" He was so worried about having a hole in his mouth. I tried to explain that everyone's teeth fall out and that he's going to get a grown-up tooth now, and that he's lucky he didn't have to go to the dentist to get it pulled. He was irreconcilable, though, and wouldn't even eat his food. In fact, we threw away 3 almost full boxes of fries because they weren't very good. Oh well.

Ethan cheered up when we got to Grandma and Grandpa's house and he got to show everybody the hole in his mouth, and his little tooth.


Then we went to Chuck-a-Rama, or "The best restaurant ever!" according to Ethan, so I think he's ok now. Plus, he's very excited to have it under his pillow for the tooth fairy.

We were hoping to stay with some friends, but their kids ended up being sick so we got a hotel room. Actually it's a suite, and it's like a little apartment. When we walked in, Ethan was like, "This is so nice!" (That's what I said too, but it's funnier that he said that before I even came in). The kids all went from disappointed about sleeping in a hotel to so excited it took me an hour and a half to get them to sleep. I'm excited too, though. This should be nice to have our own little place while we're here.

Oh, and by the way, it is SO nice here! We played at the park across the street from Pete's parents house until it got dark and it was just slightly cold! It sure makes me miss living here! Now we just need to figure out how to get our bike rides in tomorrow. I can't wait!

Sunday, December 27, 2009

8 Week 10k Plan

Christmas was wonderful and busy around here. We got to spend it with a lot of family and have a lot of fun opening presents, eating good food, and playing Beatles Rock Band. Plus we went to Sherlock Holmes so it was a pretty awesome day!

New PJs on Christmas morning.

Santa brought Linkin' Logs - just like what we used to play with when we were kids! So fun!

We had some delicious eggs benedict for breakfast (if I do say so myself).

Elle did her own hair (with a little help) and she's making her, "I'm cute" face. She's so funny!

Me and my sister, Katie.

Elle and her cousin, Aria.

Now it's getting close to New Years, and you know what that means. Resolutions for the new year, and for me, that includes training resolutions. I don't function very well without a training plan. It's now been...oh, I don't know how long, probably 6 months since I've had a real training plan. I've decided to remedy that by making my own. I've never done this before, I've always just found training plans online and followed them so we'll see how this goes.

First of all, I need something to work towards, and I found the perfect race! It's a 10k in Ogden put on by Striders Specialty Running, and it's the weekend before my "official" marathon training starts! I'm excited to see how fast I can do it.

Now for my training plan. I'm not completely on my own creating this one. I used chicrunner's plan for inspiration, and I also found this 10k plan that had a lot of speed work to look at. I only used 4 out of the 6 runs it suggests, though, and added some swimming and spin classes because we can't forget those. Also, Sunday isn't on there because that is my rest day.

(click on the picture to get a bigger view)

If you know more about training plans than me, does this look good to you? Does it look do-able? I really hope I can do it, but I might be adjusting a few things after I get started. We'll see.

Tomorrow morning we are heading to St. George to see some more family so I don't know how well I'm going to do with the first week, but I'm brining my bike and hoping to at least get a good ride in while I'm there. I think I will also get up and do my swim workout before we go. I haven't really done anything for the past 5 days so I really need to make sure I do something tomorrow! I'm so excited to have some warmer weather for a few days!!

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Merry Christmas!

It's Christmas Eve, and I'm just about ready to go to bed, but I thought I'd post a few picture first.


We had a lot of fun cooking up some goodies to give to our neighbors (and a little for ourselves too...)

Here's our finished Christmas tree complete with huge candy ornaments and presents. Also our living room complete with the usual mess and a fire in the fireplace. How cozy!

On the way to church last week:


Merry Christmas everyone!!

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Swiming!

This morning when my alarm got off, I took Sonja's advice and just didn't think. I just got up, got my stuff, ate, and headed to the pool. True, I did sit in the locker room for a few minutes with my head against the wall and wondered what I was doing there, but at least I made it!

Eventually I made it out to the pool and started warming up. I did:

200 kick board and flippers
200 swim
200 pull buey
200 swim

Then I decided to do some fast 100s. I started them every 2:00 and here are my times:
  1. 1:40 (wahoo!)
  2. 1:50
  3. 1:50
  4. 1:55
  5. 1:50
After that I decided to just do 500 all out and see if I could do it in under 10:00. I couldn't. I finished that in 10:08. Dang. I've definitely lost some speed, and I have a long way to go before Battle at Midway. That's just gives me something to work on though!

After the 500 I just cooled down by doing 100 slow and 100 on my back.

In all, that totals 2000 meters. That's not bad. I'm sure my arms will be feeling it later.

Monday, December 21, 2009

Back to Speed Work

Today was yet another smoggy day in beautiful Salt Lake City. It's sad that such a beautiful place can have such bad air sometimes. It was also the first day of my kids' "Winter Break." I guess they can't call it "Christmas Break" because that wouldn't be politically correct. I had planned on going swimming at 6 in the morning, but when my alarm went off, I couldn't help but think, "Hey, wait, this is supposed to be a vacation day!" Sleep just sounded so much better than swimming at the time, and I ended up getting 2 more hours of it!

When I finally rolled out of bed, I got the kids all ready and we went to the gym. Mindy and Ethan were so excited because they never get to go to the daycare, and feel so left out whenever I talk about taking Elle. I got them all signed in and headed to the treadmills. I was a little saddened by the thought that the more I work out, the more they sit and watch TV. I wish childcare places didn't always have the TV on. I need to make sure I find active things for them to do as well as for myself.

I picked a treadmill looking out the window today, and I thought it was nice to be able to watch the cars drive by and look at the houses just like I would be doing on a real run. I warmed up for 10 minutes, and didn't quite do a mile in that time. UG.

Then I did .5 mile with the speed on 7.5 which is supposedly an "8-minute mile pace," but boy did it feel faster than that! It was so hard, I'm amazed I made it the whole half-mile without being rocketed off the treadmill! I only did .25 miles for the rest of my intervals, but I think I was able to do a little more that way. One more of those .5 miles would have surly killed me.

My whole workout went something like this:

~1 mile @ 5
.5 mile @ 7.5
.5 mile @ 5
.25 mile @ 7.5
.25 mile @ 5
.25 mile @ 7. 5
.25 mile @ 5
.25 mile @ 7.5
.25 mile @ 5
.25 mile @ 6
~.25 mile @ 7 (this was unplanned, but Foo Fighters came on and I wanted to run fast to it, 7 was a lot more fun than 7.5)
walk for a while...

At least I'm pretty sure that's how it went. It's hard to remember all the specifics! I did about 4 miles before I started walking, and I did it all in about 45 minutes. That doesn't sound like much of a speed workout does it? I just really had to go slow on the recoveries.

When I got done, I only had 15 minutes left before the daycare closed, and I really needed to take a shower since we were going to go strait to the library so I didn't do any ab work like I wanted to. I told myself I'd do it tonight, but I don't know if that's going to happen.

When we got home (at around noon), I was getting sandwich stuff ready for lunch when I reached up to open the cupboard to get plates out, and it was already open! The back of my hand hit the corner of the door really hard, and MAN did it hurt! I thought it would feel better after a few minutes, but I ended up having to do everything one-handed for the rest of the afternoon. Even at 5:00 when we went to the store to get stuff to make Christmas goodies, it was still hurting really bad and I couldn't really use it. I told the kids we'd have to make the treats tomorrow.

When Pete got home, he asked me if I'd taken anything for it. "Um, no." I hadn't even thought about taking anything. What would I do without him? I took some ibuprofen, and it's feeling much better now. It's still a little sore, but at least I can move it without wincing. I hope it feels better tomorrow, I'd feel really dumb if it was broken. That would surely put a damper on my new resolve to start swimming again!

I will get up to swim tomorrow!

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Running On A Treadmill Is HARD!

Today the air is still really bad so I had to do my "long" run at the gym, on the treadmill.

I thought I'd do 7 miles because that's what I did last time, but I didn't realize how hard that would be! I tried to run with the speed on 6 (10 minute mile pace, easy right?), but I couldn't even keep that up for more than a mile. Most of the time, my speed was on 5, and my heart-rate was still really high (in the 170s) for pretty much the whole time!

I found myself just trying to make it to 3.5 miles because that would be half-way. That was hard. I haven't wanted to just quit running like that for a long time! I had to keep compelling myself not to stop and walk the whole time. When I got to around 4 miles, I actually had to slow down and walk for a minute, and I decided that I'd be happy with 6 miles. I started running again, but not for very long before I decided to take a bathroom break.

Having that little break helped a little, and I was able to make it the 2 more miles I needed to get to 6 miles. I put the speed up to 6 for the last half-mile, and it was like sprinting. I'm thinking the speed has got to be off on that treadmill or something was wrong with me. Or is that just the way treadmills are?

My favorite part was running the 3 blocks home. Muse was singing, "NO ONE'S GONNA TAKE ME ALIVE. YOU AND I MUST FIGHT FOR OUR LIVES...," I was being self propelled, going at my own speed, instead of being compelled to keep moving by a machine. Running outside is so awesome!

I really am grateful for treadmills, though. I probably wouldn't have even gone today if I had to run outside. The air is so bad right now, you can especially tell now that it's dark, yuck!

Friday, December 18, 2009

Treading Hills

This morning, I left Elle watching cartoons while I dropped Mindy and Ethan off at school then went to the grocery store. When I got home, I looked around and couldn't find her, and got a little worried for a minute. Then I looked into our bed and she was asleep in there with Pete. It was the sweetest thing! I thought I'd wait around for her to wake up, then we'd go to the gym. She ended up sleeping until almost 11, though! Of course, she must be sick, why else would she sleep so long? It was too late to take her with me to the gym, and I wouldn't have taken her anyway with her being sick so I was relieved when Pete ended up staying home because he was feeling a little sick too.

Today wasn't too cold so I could have run outside, but it was a red air day. I don't know if that's the exact wording, but the air is really bad. Because of the mountains we get inversion which means all the pollution gets trapped in the valley and the air gets really smoggy sometimes in the winter.

I didn't really want to go running today, but I didn't get to go yesterday because I was seriously running around all day to the dentist and the eye doctor, dropping Pete off at work and picking the kids up from school, and I was feeling really stressed out. I knew I would feel better if I went today so I just got ready and put my headphones on. The next thing I knew, Muse was playing and I just couldn't get out the door fast enough. Funny how fast things can change!

I ran outside for about 3 blocks to the gym then I ran on the treadmill. It seemed like such a shame to be running inside, but at least I was looking out the window at a lot of mud (where they're working on the new building!) so I pretended I was trail running. It kind of felt like trail running too because I did hills.

I ran for half a mile with the incline on 1, then turned it up to 6 for a quarter of a mile, then 7 for a quarter, then back down to 1 for half. I did this 4 times, and it was really hard. I had the speed on 5 for the hills and the first quarter-mile of the recovery, then I'd turn it to 6 to finish off the half-mile before turning it back down to 5 and the incline back up to 6, then 7. Is that confusing?

I did a total of 4.5 miles in about 52 minutes, not counting jogging to the gym and back. I liked this gym because there was actually a fan that I pointed right at myself, and when I first got there there was only one other person in there. It was almost like my own personal gym! It was a good run, but I can't wait for the air to clear up so I can run outside again. I would do it tomorrow for sure if the air wasn't bad. I'll probably end up on the treadmill again. That's ok, though, I'm getting used to it.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Half Iron Distance Triathlons on Saturdays

I believe that Sunday is a sacred day and should be spent, going to church, worshiping, visiting family, and resting from our labors. Racing does not really fit into that, especially when the race requires me (and probably my family) to miss church. I just don't want my kids to think I think racing is more important than church. I did do Coeur d'Alene on a Sunday, but I felt bad about it and swore I would never do a race on Sunday again. Learn more about my beliefs.

This leads to my plight for figuring out a race schedule for 2010. I had planned on doing the Bear Lake Classic Half, but it doesn't look like it's happening again. It's such a shame, we were really looking forward to camping up there again (I don't know why, we had a pretty miserable night there this year...), and it would have been a perfect way to end the season since it was at the end of August.

I asked all my good friends on Twitter if they had any suggestions for a Half I could do, and one awesome person (goSonja) suggested "rev3!!!! Then we can meet!!"

I thought that sounded perfect, I had kind of been wanting to do that one anyway, and it's even at an awesome amusement park so my family could have fun while I'm racing! Plus I would LOVE to meet Sonja, she's my one of my biggest triathlete heros!

I got really excited about it, immediately went to their website to get more info, and it's September 12 so that's just around the time I want! I look on my calendar for September 12, and BOOM, it's a Sunday.

Dang it. I can't say I wasn't tempted. A lot. The fact that it costs $250 really helped curb my enthusiasm, though. I reminded myself of my goal not to do any more races on Sunday and put that race out of my mind. Dang. So, I've got to find another one.

I was a little annoyed that the race I wanted to do was on a Sunday, and it was starting to seem like all the races outside of Utah were on Sundays, and I could only find one half in Utah. Do people prefer it this way, I wondered? So, again, I turned to twitter to do a little pull about what day people prefer racing, Saturday or Sunday. I didn't quite get the number of responses I wanted, and probably half the people who responded are actually from Utah so I know my survey's not really scientificly (is that a word?) viable, but here are my responses:
  1. "I have no preference. I just like getting out there!"
  2. "prefer racing saturdays but during school year can usually only do sundays."
  3. "Saturday, Sunday is a day off."
  4. "Saturdays. It gives you an extra day to recover before attempting the stairs at work on Monday."
  5. "Saturdays. I need a Sunday before Monday comes."
  6. "Saturdays!"
So, according to my (very scientific) survey, most people actually do prefer Saturdays for racing. So, why all the races on Sundays then? I asked my tweeps:
  1. "Sundays outside of Utah because it's the lightest traffic day of the week. Easier for road/intersection closures. Less impact."
  2. "racing on Sundays. it gives you a day to travel to the race."
Ahhh, that makes sense. Thanks to everyone who helped me with figuring this out!

Back to finding a half for me:

I knew that Boise 70.3 was on a Saturday, but it's on the same Saturday as the Utah Valley Marathon which I'm doing with my sisters so that one's out. I started looking around for Half Iron Distance Triathlons on Saturdays and there's not just a list anywhere so I thought I'd make my own. Hopefully this will be able to help somebody else too. Here it is:

Abu Dhabi (Dubai) - March 13 (3km swim, 200km bike, 20km run or 1.5km swim, 100km bike, 10km run) Has anyone heard of these distances before?
Oceanside 70.3 - March 27
Rage Half (Las Vegas) - April 17
Washington Half (NC) - April 24
White Lake Half - May 1 & 8
Gulf Coast Half (FL) - May 8
Kinetic Half (NY) - May 8
Harryman - May 22
Hawaii 70.3 - June 5
Deuceman (AZ) - June 5
Vikingman (ID) - June 5
Boise 70.3 - June 12
Liberty Tri (MN) - June 12
Steelhead 70.3 - July 31
Sebagoman (NY) - August 14
Utah Half - August 28
Quakerman (PA) - September 11
Pumpkinman Half (Las Vegas) - October 17
Miami 70.3 - October 30
Beach to Battleship Half or Full (NC) - November 13

If you know of any other Halfs that are taking place on a Saturday, please let me know so I can add them to my list.

So, for an end of the season (preferably August - October) half, looks like I could go to New York, Pennsylvania, Las Vegas or Miami. Now, are any of those close enough to drive to? Wait a minute, what about Utah Half? It seems pretty obvious that I should just do that one hu? I don't know why I've been avoiding that one. Silly me. There's also Pumpkinman that isn't too far away. Why did I make such a big deal out of all this? Oh well, I hope my list helps somebody.

By the way, I hope I haven't offended those of you who race on Sundays. That is totally your choice and I don't hold it against you one bit.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Fun Stuff

Ah, look at the beautiful vehicle! Just look at it! And it's ours, all ours! The last payment on the Jeep went through on Monday, and I just realized it today! What a good feeling it is to have that paid off, and it only took us 3 1/5 years! :) I keep thinking, "man, if only we'd put the money we've been paying on that into savings, we'd have over $20,000 right now." Of course, we would never have done that so it's useless thinking things like that. We're done buying cars with credit, though. We're going to save up for the next one. After Switzerland.

To celebrate the ownership of the Jeep, Elle and I drove all the way to Bountiful so we could go to our favorite carwash. That was fun, and Elle fell asleep on the way home. Bonus!

Another exciting thing that's happened recently is I've started an etsy store! So far there are only 2 blankets up, but they are so pretty, you've got to go see them!


Well, that's it for now. I did a lot of resting today, and plan to do a killer hill workout on the treadmill tomorrow!

A Good Treadmill Run?

I've been having such a hard time running on the treadmill so far this winter, and I've wondered if it was a bad idea to even get the gym membership. But I've had some breakthroughs, and I'm going to keep working on it.

I recently joined the Get Fit Runner's Club, and on their blog they've got a good article on Treadmill Training for Winter. I read this article Monday, then set out to do my own treadmill workout on Tuesday.

First of all, I dressed in cooler clothes. I wore my sleeveless tri top which also made me feel more like an athlete just wearing it so I think that, not only kept me cooler, but also helped me feel more into the workout.

I took the advice of Get Fit and put the treadmill on a 1% incline. This really helped a lot! It was so much more uncomfortable and unnatural feeling, and the treadmill was even shaking more, with no incline.

The next thing I did was try not to worry about the speed. I just started off nice and easy, then increased or decreased the speed according to my music, which is what I would do outside. I still worked hard, and I was still totally soaked by the end, but I didn't feel like I was going to throw up the whole time or anything.

I also brought some poweraid and a towel which were very nice to have. I think dressing cooler and having a drink helped a lot with not overheating in there.

I didn't worry too much about distance, and my workout got reset twice so I'm not sure exactly how far I ran, but I think it was between 5 and 6 miles in about an hour.

It was actually a really good run! I kind of had fun and felt good about it!

The best thing about this run was that it made my back feel better! I hurt my back last week shoveling snow. I do this every winter, I need to remember not to shovel, but I figured, I'm an Ironman, I can shovel a little snow! Then instead of being careful with it so it would get better, I let Pete practice his Krav Maga kick on me (I had a cushion of course). I lost my balance and fell down. I felt so stupid, and it made my back start hurting again. That was on Friday, then on Sunday I was stupid again and carried Mindy across the slushy street to church. It actually felt fine on the way over, but on the way back it hurt it again. Dang it! So, I wore my back brace for the next few days and was really careful after that.

I went swimming on Monday thinking that would make my back feel better since that's what I would do when I hurt my back 2 years ago in spin class, but this time it actually made it feel worse. It was really good to be swimming again, though! I did about 2,000 meters and my arms were sore from it yesterday! That's what I get for taking a couple months off swimming. I wanted to go again today, but then decided (in the middle of the night) that I didn't want to risk making my back more sore again, and I didn't want to get up that early anyway. What am I going to do today now? I don't know. Maybe I'll just run errands all day.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Not Going Anywhere

Pete went to San Francisco on Sunday and, despite my hinting about him leaving his laptop here, he brought it with him. He thought for sure he'd need it. I wanted to ask, "What for, taking notes?" But I figured he knew what he was talking about.

He got back last night, and he hadn't even opened his laptop once. Oh well, I guess now we know I can survived without the internet for 4 days! I did tweet from my phone but I couldn't read any tweets or anything, so sorry if you felt like I've been ignoring you for the past few days.

I really needed a plan B for working out this week. Not only because Pete was gone so I didn't have anyone to watch Elle, but because I don't think it's gotten any warmer than 20 degrees all week. Brrr! What happened to my toughing it out and running outside all winter? Well, that didn't last long did it? I would be scared to run on the icy, slushy, snowy sidewalks/streets right now anyway, not to mention it's hard to even breath out there sometimes.

Anyway, to make a long story short ("Too late!"), I went in and got the All County Gold Pass I was telling you about. It's great, and when the new, big rec. center opens up right by my house, I'll already be a member!

For now, the closest rec. center (that has the free daycare) is about 3 miles away, and it's a pretty dinky little gym, but it's got everything I need including a pool so I'm happy to be able to go. Elle really likes it too. She didn't even put up a fight the first day we went, just sat down and started coloring. The second time we went, it took me 10 minutes to get her to leave. I think part of the reason she likes it so much is that it's not very crowded. There were only a few other kids in there with her, and that's how the gym is too. There's no fear of not getting a machine here! Plus the lady at the daycare is really friendly and talkative which is nice.

Ok, so the first day there was Monday:

I got on the treadmill and, after warming up, I decided to try putting it on 7. The other day I told my sister about my run on Saturday and she said, "Wow, that's almost 7 miles an hour!" I hadn't even thought of it that way, but she's used to running on a treadmill so that's how she thinks about running speed. Well, I thought, if I can run 7 miles in almost an hour, I should be able to put the treadmill on 7 for at least 3 or 4 miles...

Wrong!

Oh my gosh, I could not believe how hard it was running on the treadmill! I was able to do the 7, but only for a mile. I did 3 miles total, and I was dead! I couldn't stay long that day because by the time we got there, we only had a little more than half an hour before the daycare closed.
I had been so worried about getting signed up and figuring out where everything was, that I forgot my ipod too. I blamed the hard, monotonousness of the treadmill on that.

The next day it snowed really hard, and I didn't want to drive any further than I had to so I just hung out at home, worked on my quilts and shoveled snow when not driving the kids around.

Wednesday I headed back over, and this time I had plenty of time, and I remembered my ipod. I even chose a treadmill facing the window, hoping this would make me feel more free or something. I don't know.

It was still miserable, though. I did a mile at 6mph, then one at 7, then one at 6, one more at 7, and then a really slow one to cool down because I was dead. I felt like I was going to throw up the whole time. Pete says this might be because of over-heating. I was sweating a lot and they don't have any fans in there. Looking out the window didn't help either, I just felt sad that the tree I kept looking at wasn't getting any closer.

In the end I did 4 miles in 39 minutes. It was way harder than my hilly 7 miles in 1:03, and there aren't even any hills on a treadmill! What's up with that? Some people say running on a treadmill is easier than running outside. I really just hope I need to get used to it or it's going to be a really long, painful winter.

Today I went in and just did a tone/abs class. It was weird because there were only 4 of us (counting the teacher) and they were all much older than me. I felt a little silly at first and wondered if I'd even get a workout, but my abs are feeling it so I'm glad I went.

What this gym really lacks (other than fans) is a spin class. I don't know what I'm going to do about that. How could they not have spin? That's usually like the most popular class!

Saturday, December 5, 2009

Catching Snowflakes

I didn't get out as much as I would have liked this week, but I did go to spin class on Thursday! I missed my good ol' Thursday spin class. It was a great class and I got a really good workout.

I made it a month and 2 days without a gym membership, and I just couldn't take it any more! I didn't get a new membership, but paid for one day plus one hour of child care for Elle. That came out to $8.50! Yikes. I can't keep that up, and I'm not going to. I just found out I can get an All County Gold membership which gets me into all the rec. centers in the Salt Lake County, along with FREE daycare! It sounds too good to be true, but that's what I'm planning on doing on Monday. Then when the new rec. center opens a block from my house, I'll be able to go there. I'm so excited to start swimming and going to spin and being able to run without rushing again!

I actually took this picture Nov. 22, but this is about what it looked like by the time I got home, maybe even a little more snow than that...

Today. I had to get out and run. It had been way too long - since Tuesday! Besides, I don't ever feel like my day is complete without a run, or some kind of workout.

It was cold, cold, cold (maybe 25-27 degrees F) so I didn't rush out the door first thing in the morning, but left at around 10:30. I only made it a few blocks before it started snowing lightly. It really didn't bother me at all, and had no effect on my running plan. After all, it was just barely snowing. I warmed up after about a mile, but I did wish I would have worn gloves because I kept needing to put my hands into my sleeves (which is fine, but gloves would have been ok too.).

I had to stop at Einstein's Bagels to use their bathroom, and I was kind of frustrated about that. I actually haven't needed to pee while running for quite a while so I was hoping I was done with that. Oh well, one time won't kill me. The bagels smelled really good to...

I ran up the hill for a few more minutes after my bathroom break. When I turned around and headed back down, the snow was starting to stick. Running down the hill in the Avenues, I got up to a 6:28 min/mile pace, and I just kept praying I wouldn't slip! It was fun to go that fast! I felt like I was flying! I kept a pretty good pace the rest of the way home, and felt really good, even to the end. Pete asked me if I could have kept that pace up for longer, and I think I could have. At least a little longer.

It was really snowing for the last few miles. Big fluffy flakes! It was so pretty! I love to watch the snowflakes come down, and I couldn't believe how happy I was to be out there in it. This is me. Someone who hates winter and hates the cold. I was thinking, "Why am I so freaking happy lately?!" (But I'm not complaining!) I just smiled at everyone I passed, and just kept on running! I felt so reckless and adventurous being out there in the snow like that, and I couldn't help but try to catch the snowflakes in my mouth as I ran. I didn't even mind too much when they'd land on my eyelashes. I'd just brush them away with the sleeve that was conveniently already over my hand.

It was a great run, I'm so glad I got to go! If I would have waited any longer, I probably wouldn't have gone with an inch of snow already on the ground.

Here are my splits (I must say, the snow sure did not slow me down, even though I was worried about slipping most of the time.):
  1. 8:47
  2. 9:45
  3. 10:03
  4. 9:13
  5. 8:08
  6. 8:34
  7. 8:57
Total Distance: 7 miles
Total Time: 1:03
Average Pace: 9:04 min/mi (!!!)

Guys, I really am getting faster and I can hardly even stand it, I'm so excited about it!

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

2 More Reasons to Like Winter

Reason 1

Reason 2

Yep, that's right. I've got TWO Christmas trees this year! I had the little white one from the past two years, but I was really wanting a big, more traditional tree this year. While we were up in Heber for Thanksgiving, I was talking to my dad's awesome girlfriend, Angela, and she said she got a little tree this year because she doesn't have room for her big one any more. I mentioned (maybe a little too conveniently) that I wanted to do a big one this year. Of course she jumps right in and gives me hers! We had to cram in into the back of the Jeep to get it home, but we made it, and now we have such a beautiful tree! I love it! It looks a little sparse right now, but Angela also said she had some big ornaments that go with it that she'll give us when she finds them. I got the little tree out today for the kids to put the fun ornaments and colorful lights on.

Anyway, I really do think we have Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Years in the middle of the winter because otherwise can you imagine how depressed we'd all be in the winter without the holidays?! I've just been feeling so festive lately (is that a way someone can feel?) and excited about decorating and putting lights up for Christmas, and today was really fun because I got to go out and get ornaments and lights for my beautiful new tree!

I didn't run today, but I did yesterday despite the fact that I felt like I was going to puke in the morning. I really was getting worried that something had happened to my IUD and that I was pregnant, even to the point of going to the dollar store to look for a pregnancy test (I wasn't worried enough to pay more than $1 for it though!). They didn't have any, and by the time the afternoon came around I was feeling fine so I didn't worry about it any more. This morning I felt fine. I'm sure it was nothing.

But, oh yeah, my run. I wasn't feeling very good, but I figured a run would make me feel better, and I didn't want to take too long because Pete needed to get to work. I decided to do intervals since I haven't done that for a while. I just took Pete's Garmin to watch my distances. I did a mile to warm up, then I did 3 half-mile (800 meter) intervals with a half-mile between the first two to recover, and only a quarter-mile between 2 & 3. That was probably a mistake since it was a little slower, but that also could have been because a conference talk came on during that one and I had to click through to find a good song, it's sad how dependent on fasts songs I am to go fast. It's also sad that I have conference talks on the same ipod I use for running. What is this the dark ages?):
  1. 4:02
  2. 4:02
  3. 4:04
I did a total of 4.18 miles in 41:16. I went pretty freaking slow when I was recovering. But, I'm happy that I was almost able to run as fast as on the indoor track for my intervals. It's harder outside.

Oh, and I didn't feel better after that run, it just made me want to puke more, but it was still fun. Am I crazy or what?

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Happy Thanksgiving!

I hope everyone had a great Thanksgiving! I know that it was 2 days ago, but I just can not get enough of these pumpkin cookies! You've got to try them out if you've got some left-over pumpkin. Or not left-over. Either way.

I had a great Thanksgiving. First thing in the morning, I signed up for The Battle at Midway Triathlon which is going to be the Rocky Mountain qualifier race for Age Group Nationals next year! I won my age group there this year so I'm hopeful! Just because there was only one other woman in my age group at that race doesn't mean I don't have a chance. I can't say I loved putting in 30 for the age I will be next year. The 30-35 age group is always bigger and more competitive. Plus, I'm sure there will be a lot more people racing now that it's a qualifier. Looking at this year's numbers, though, I just need to be 8 minutes faster to get into the top 5 (to qualify for Nationals). It was also comforting that I beat #5 in the swim and the bike, but she beat me in the run and therefore the whole thing. Even more reason to focus on running this year.

We went to Heber to spend Thanksgiving with my family, along with my dad's girlfriend and her kids. I went and worked with my sister at The Children's Place in Park City on Black Friday, and it was actually kind of a fun day. It went by really fast because it was so busy, and what could be nicer than folding clothes, listening to music and eating junk food all day, not having to worry about anyone else but myself? When we got home, I realized that my feet were really sore, though. I had planned on going running after work, but couldn't bring myself to do it with my feet hurting so much. I didn't even want to stand any longer!

We spent one more night at my Dad's house which was nice because Pete and I were able to go to our favorite place for dinner, Tarahumara. The lady who owns it was happy to see us. She's so sweet. We also drove by the house that we really liked when we were looking, but couldn't afford at the time. Now, it is still for sale, and for 20,000 less than what we paid for this house! Plus it's in Heber! We're going to watch it and think about it for a while. It sure would be nice to live there again, though.

This morning I finally got that run in. It was a really hard run! It seemed like most of the run was uphill, against the wind. Plus my ipod died after one song. One song! Come on ipod! It was kind of fun to run on the roads where I really first started running, and where I realized that running could be fun. It's so nice running there because not once did I have to stop for cars or a traffic light. I saw very few cars, and the ones I did see were able to go into the other lane to stay away from me, and they would smile and wave. I did have one scary dog come running out after me, though. It was a Blue Heeler which is the kind of dog my grandpa has always had, and they've never seemed scary to me. This one did, though. It had it's teeth bared and it was just looking at me like it wanted to rip my throat out. I had to stop and yell at it for a few seconds before it would back off. So, there is a down side to running in the country.

I did 6.2 miles (10k) in exactly one hour. Here are my splits:
  1. 9:02
  2. 9:25
  3. 9:58
  4. 10:19 (uphill, against the wind remember?)
  5. 9:33
  6. 8:41 (heading home, downhill!)
  7. 3:15 (really slow .2)
I jogged pretty slow for a little bit at the end. I was tired! Then I cut through the field and across the canal to get back to my dad's house, feeling a little bit like Emma or Ann of Green Gables. It didn't seem so romantic without the long flowing dress and and basket of freshly picked wildflowers, never mind the fact that I was covered in sweat and wearing running attire.

With such a good run last time, it was good to have a harder one today to be reminded that not all terrain is the same. The hills will just help me get faster. Plus, there are a LOT of hills at The Battle at Midway Tri.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Race Schedule & New PR

I I've got my race schedule (pretty much) figured out for 2010. Finally. I know you've been waiting and waiting for this moment, and it is finally here!

I haven't decided for sure about the first two. I told Pete a while ago that I would just do one race next year. Well, at least that's what he said. How can I just do one race though!? Maybe I meant I would just do one big race? Well, my big race, or my "A race" as they say, is going to be Bear Lake Half. Utah Valley Marathon won't be too little either. I'm so tempted to do Rage and St. George Tri, but then I think it might be better to just focus on running until after the marathon. But then I don't want to totally loose my triathlon fitness either.

April 17 - Rage 1/2 (Lake Mead)

May 15 - SGTri Sprint/Olympic (St. George)

June 12 - Utah Valley Marathon

July 31 - Spudman Olympic (Burley)

August 7 - BAM Olympic

August 28* - Bear Lake - 1/2 (bear lake)


* I can't find the date for next year's Bear Lake Half. It will be August 28th if they do it the same weekend as this year. Hopefully they'll get their new website up soon.

If you're looking for a good race to do in this area, these are some of my favorites, and it would be awesome if anyone wanted to join me at any of these races. If none of these work for you, here are the other ones I wanted to do, but I took off my list when I narrowed it down:

June 12 - Boise 70.3

July 10 ? - Echo Sprint/Olympic (Coalville) One of my favorites, and would be a great first tri!

July 17 - Scofield Sprint/Olympic/escape/kids (Price)

August 21 - Park City Marathon (Park City)

September 16 - Kokopeli Sprint/Olympic (St. George)

September 18 - Top of Utah Marathon (Logan)

October 2 - St. George Marathon

October 16 - Pumpkinman Sprint/Olympic and 1/2 (Las Vegas)


I will probably also do a few 5ks and 10ks in there somewhere on the way to the marathon, just for fun. In fact, there is one on Thanksgiving in Bountiful that I think we're all going to go do. There's a kids k and all the kids are really excited about doing that.

Now onto today:

This morning, Elle woke up at around 3 with a fever and she said her hands and feet hurt so I was a little worried about her. I gave her some Ibproufin and got her back to bed by like 4. Amazingly, she woke up just as happy as can be and seemed a lot better today. She didn't have a fever, but she's still got the runny nose and a little cough. She watched movies for most of the morning, and she sat with me while I watched Roman Holliday and folded laundry. She even kind of liked it. She kept asking, "Is that the princess?" That's a great movie by the way. After lunch, I got her to take a nap, then I headed out on a run since Pete was home sick too (yeah, with something different though).

I went out with just my long-sleeved shirt on since that's what I wore last time and I got hot, but I turned right back around to get my jacket. I guess when it's 37 degrees, and you can see your breath, it's time for a jacket. I also pulled my long sleeves out and over my hands which worked pretty well. I did warm up after a mile or so, just like I knew I would, but I had to be a little careful about the ice sidewalks. I need to get used to this running in the cold stuff.

I ran on the bike path by the river, and was trying to remember if the river froze last year and why I couldn't picture it. Then I remembered, I didn't run last winter. Like at all. I had a stress fracture in my heel from the St. George Marathon so I didn't run from October until January (around the time I started this blog). Even when I did start running again, it was on the indoor track for a while. (Man, just thinking about it is making my heel hurt.)

I wasn't feeling great starting out, but I started to feel pretty good after a while. I pushed it a little bit on this run, and it was worth it!

I ran 6 miles in 54:50!!

That is SO close to 9-minute-mile pace!

I've never ran that far that fast before! Pete was like, "That's a new PR! You should write that down somewhere." So I'm writing it down here. There is my fastest 6 miles: 54:50.

That would explain why my legs are so tired now.

Here are my mile splits:
  1. 9:05
  2. 9:15
  3. 9:03
  4. 9:10
  5. 9:01
  6. 9:10
The weird thing was that, if I'd look at the Garmin and notice I was going slower than 9:00 pace, say 9:30, I'd just start going a little faster. It would seem almost imperceptible how much faster I was going, and it would jump to 8:30. Wow, that is really good to know! So, a little bit more effort really helps a lot! From now on, I'm going to keep putting that little bit more effort into my runs. No more just coasting for me.

Saturday, November 21, 2009

My Own 5k

Today I was planning on doing a 5k with my sister up in Logan (an hour and a half from here). I was going to go up last night and have a fun girl's night, sans kids, then do the race in the morning.

Well, when I talked to my sister last night, she told me she had to work this morning so she wouldn't be able to do the race. Well, I didn't want to go do it if she wasn't doing it. That was my whole reason for going up so I just stayed home. It looked like it might snow up there anyway.

This morning was a nice loung-around-in-bed kind of morning, then we went out to breakfast. I love going out to breakfast! Then we did some shopping. We got home just before 1:00 and I made an appointment for me and Mindy to get our hair cut at 2:00. At around this same time my brother (who also lives in Logan) invited us over for dinner tonight. Well, that meant I couldn't go running after our hair appointment so I had to hurry and go before! I couldn't not go, I just got a new sports bra and had to try it out! Plus I'd been looking forward to running today all week. It's weird that I get excited about running now...

I had planned on doing a long-ish run today, 6-7 miles, but since I only had an hour I decided to do my own little 5k to see how fast I could do it.

I headed out, and ran for about a mile, getting warmed up, then I turned on my Garmin and let the pain begin. My goal was to finish in under 27 minutes. To do this, I had to keep my pace at around 8:30, and it was really hard for the last 2 miles, but I did it!

Distance: 3.1 miles

Time: 26:14 (WOOT!)

Mile splits:
  1. 8:28
  2. 8:33
  3. 8:24
  4. :48
My max pace was 6:00/mile! Wow. It wasn't for very long, though. It was during my first mile, and I started off way to fast. I probably should have paced myself a little better, looking at my data chart, my speed was all over the place! But I'm happy that I met my goal even if I felt like my heart was going to explode and I was going to throw up for most of the time!

Having done an Ironman, I now know that anything is possible. It seems more impossible for me to get fast at running than to do the Ironman, but I am encouraged that I've been able to speed up this much so far! Who knows, maybe I'll be fast one day!

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

More Hills Please

It was 50 degrees today! Yeah! I've been planning on doing a bike ride today ever since I saw the weather forecast. Even though it was so much warmer today, I still felt cold and hesitant about a ride. Not to mention I was having severe period cramps. That didn't help. While I was making my pre-ride pb&j, I seriously was having a hard time even standing up strait, and then it hurt to sit down too. I just kept thinking that I would be justified if I was just lazy and took a nice hot bath instead. But I knew that doing something active would make me feel better. It always does, even if it seems like the worst thing to do at the time.

I also knew that a hot bath after a good bike ride would be so much better than just a hot bath so I got myself all dressed up to go, and got Elle all comfy in the bike trailer. She fell asleep right away, like usual. She's like clock-work, that girl! Of course, having a nap means she's trying to use her cuteness to stay up as late as possible right now.

I added more hills than I usually do with the bike trailer today, and it was hard work! I rode on the bike path along Beck Street up to North Salt Lake (almost bountiful...), and I didn't take it easy on that hill either. I worked it! I got my heart-rate up nice and high, and got myself nice and warm too. That's not too hard of a hill when I'm by myself, but with Elle, it's a different thing.


After our ride, I took Elle over to the river where the ducks are and we fed them some old bread. There were a lot of hungry ducks, so luckily a guy with 2 big bags of bread crumbs got there at the same time as us, and he let us throw out some of his bread too.

I rode (or was out, I'm not sure if I stopped my timer at the ducks or not) for an hour and a half, and went about 14.5 miles.

When we got home, I did get my hot bath, along with hot cocoa, and it was very nice. I felt so good for the whole ride, and as soon as I got home the cramps came back, but they weren't as bad. I knew the bike ride would do me good. Out of all the bike rides I've done, there's only one where I thought, "Man, I shouldn't have gone," and that was the one where it was pouring, freezing cold rain and my ankles were all purple when I got home. I felt a little stupid for going out in that, but hey, it was still a learning experience.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

I Dream of Racing

Elle (August 17, 2008)

This morning I dreamt that I had just finished a Half Ironman, and I was surprised that I was just a little sore. The weird thing about the dream was that Carol from Triathlon Training Blog also came and did the race (whatever race it was, it must have been nearby) and she stayed with me. Unfortunately, I also had a ton of other people staying at my house (I have no idea where these people all slept!) and everything was so crazy that I didn't even get a chance to talk to her. I was bummed about that. A few weeks ago I dreamt that goSonja came to visit and we went swimming at this awesome swimming pool.

Maybe I'm on twitter a little too much!

So, the feeling sore was actually real. I was a little sore today from that hard run yesterday, but that's as it should be. No pain, no gain. I have always liked the feeling of sore muscles (to a point) because it means that I worked and that I'm getting stronger! I'm not going to get faster by just sitting around, am I?

I did just sit around today, though. Well, not really. Elle and I got the whole upstairs cleaned up using the laundry basket as a train. She'd push it around and we'd make a stop whenever we saw toys or shoes or books or anything that needed to be picked up. At some of the stops, some of the stuff had to get off to be put away and that thing would say, "Bye everyone!" It was so much fun, and Elle loved it! The best part was that I didn't just feel like a maid, I felt like I was spending time with my little girl.

It's amazing how much my stress level goes down when the house is clean! It's totally worth it for me to take a day to do that. I also planned out dinners for this week before I went grocery shopping, so that made dinner time a lot less stressful. I need to do that more often.

Elle and I also went on a little walk to the store, and she just held my hand as we walked. It was so sweet! That was my exercise for the day, and I was fine with that. Tomorrow I plan to go for a bike ride with the trailer since it's supposed to be the warmest day of the week.

Monday, November 16, 2009

Hill Run

I didn't do my long run on Saturday. In fact, I didn't run at all because it snowed and was freaking cold, but I figured it would be ok since I had that impromptu, awesome, almost long run on Friday.

Today I woke up feeling really tired and sick to my stomach so I didn't even plan on doing a run. I did make it to the store with Elle, though, and she was just so cute and good at the store that I came home feeling so much better! It's amazing how much control that girl has over my mood!

When the afternoon rolled around, I decided to leave Ethan and Elle with Pete and run during Mindy's ballet class. The ballet studio is up in The Avenues to I got to take off from there, and I just headed up (and I mean up) 2nd Ave. for 2 miles. It was really hard work, and I was pretty slow. Here are my first 2 mile splits:

1. 9:52
2. 11:32 (this is where it got steep)

I turned around at the top, and got to run down the hill. That is so fun! I love being able to go that fast. How do people do it on flat ground?? Even though it's easier, I think running that fast down the hill helps me know what it's like to go that fast. It gets my legs used to going that fast, or gets me used to seeing the scenery going by that fast, or something. I just kept telling myself, "Ok, this is how fast I need to go on Saturday." Here are my last 2 mile splits:

3. 8:09
4. 8:31

It was a fun run even though I forgot my ipod, and it was cold (27 degrees according to my car). My hands were cold for the first 10 minutes, but then I was fine, and I listened to my keys rattling around in my back pocket. I could have been annoyed by that, but I decided to just use the sound as my running beat. It's always fun running over all the fallen leaves too.

Note: It couldn't have really been that cold. It won't get much colder than that all winter so, if it was really that cold, I should be able to run all winter just fine.

Friday, November 13, 2009

Friday Flashback - My First Real 5k

March 10, 2007 - photo by Alexis Hjelm

This morning I didn't really have a run scheduled, but I actually felt good, and I really wanted to go running! This might be because my alarm didn't go off and I slept for an extra half an hour. (I still got the kids to school on time, though!) But, whatever the reason, I wasn't going to let wanting to run go to waste.

Man it was cold this morning (like 30 degrees), but I didn't even hesitate to grab some warm running tights and get all suited up. I had gloves and ear warmer, but just two long-sleeved shirts because I always end up wanting to take my jacket off. This ended up being perfect, and after a mile and a half I took the gloves off and tucked them into my shorts waist, then I took my ear warmer off at around 2 miles.

Starting out, listening to Muse, I felt like I was in a movie or even a cool running commercial or something. Muse will do that to you, I guess. I just felt so light and quick, and just good! It was awesome. I had decided to just do a quick, fun run and not worry about my time or speed or anything, and it was a good thing too because the battery on the Garmin died before I had even gone a mile. So I got to have that big, heavy thing on my wrist just for looks. (ok, it's not that heavy)

I ended up doing probably 5 miles. Maybe a little more. When I got to my house, I was listening to "Grounds For Divorce" by Elbow and I didn't want to start cooling down until it was over so I went around the block. But when it ended, "The Uprising" by Muse came on, and that is not a good cool down song. That's a good "Let's kill this run!" kind of song. So I kept going strong until that was over.

Really, I just felt so good and so fast the whole run. I don't know if I really was fast, but I felt good, and had a great time. That's what matters. Running is just so amazing!

I used to hate running. When I would go running before, every second was agony to me. I'm going to tell you about my first 5k, which was kind of a turning point for me. It helped me see that I really could run and that maybe it wasn't so bad.

When I got pregnant with Elle, I had already done my first Triathlon and fallen in love with the sport, but I still hated the running part of it. I had planned on doing several tris that summer, but getting pregnant put an end to those plans. I'm not complaining, though, I love Elle and I'm SO glad I have her! Anyway, shortly after she was born, I hurt my back in spin class so that also put a damper on triathlon training (I still did some later that year though). Even though I hated it, I wanted to get better at running so that I could at least run the whole 5k at the end of my next tri.

Around this time, my sister, Katie, decided to she wanted to start running so we planned to do the Red Cross 5k on March 10, 2007. That was my anniversary, but I think Pete had something going on that day too. This would be my first real 5k. One that wasn't at the end of a triathlon.

We lived in different cities, but we found a training plan online and we both stuck to it religiously. It's funny now to think about a training plan to build up distance to 3.1 miles, but that was our goal, and it was hard enough. We added like a quarter-mile every week or something like that so it wasn't too daunting for us non-runners.

When race day came, we were ready and excited! Here we are before the race. Man, I miss that pink jacket! The zipper broke so I brought it back to the Pearl Izumi factory outlet, where I got it, to see if I could trade. They did let me trade, but they didn't have any more pink so I took a red one instead, which is pretty cool. But I liked my pink one.


The race started and I just thought it was so weird to have it be so packed with runners like that, and weird to have so many people with me during the run. It was fun though!

Here I come into the finish! I don't know why I even wore that ugly hat, look how cloudy it was. I tried desperately to find out what my time was, but I can't find it anywhere. I know I must have written it somewhere, but I don't know where. I think I came it at right around half an hour, though. It seems like it was either 29 or 31 minutes.


Here comes Katie! I was so proud of her that day! I can't remember what her time was either. She kept training and did a half marathon that same year, and this year we plan to do the Park City Marathon together. That will be awesome!


In the mean time, we're going to do our second race together! Finally. I can't believe it's almost been 3 years!

Katie's doing a 5k next weekend in Logan, and I am going to go up and do it with her. I'm so excited to see how fast I can do it! Maybe that was my motivation for such a good run today. Maybe I need races in my life. Even in the winter.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Blustery Bike Ride

Look at my cute family fixin' bikes (taken 9/9/2008)

This morning it was all gray and windy so I didn't want to head out on my bike right away even though I probably could have gone by myself that way. I kind of thought that later in the day it would be a little nicer so I just worked on my sister's quilt for a few hours. I was getting close to getting it done so I was excited to get back to work on it. I did get all the squares/lines sewn together today too! Very exciting stuff! I'll post pictures when it's all done.

As I was spending the morning working on the quilt, I started to worry that it would actually get worse and start raining or something, then I wouldn't even get to go. After we made cookies (ok, we had to make cookies! It as a stormy looking day, what else could we do?) and had lunch, I got the bike trailer hooked up and we got all ready. I put Elle's pillow and blanket in there so she was all snuggly, and she fell asleep right away, and slept until we got home.

The great thing about riding in the wind is that you get to push hard and be humbled one way, and go fast and have fun the other way. It's the best when you do the hard part first, and that's how it was today, though it wasn't really that windy. In fact, it wasn't that cold either. It looked worse than it was. I forgot to wear gloves, and my hands never even got cold. My feet were pretty cold by the end, though, but that's to be expected.

I rode hard for 50 minutes, down Warm Springs Road and back, and managed 12 miles. Let's say that's really good for riding with a bike trailer in the wind.

I had a great day today!

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

We're Goin' Single!

First let me say that yesterday I was so stressed out and feeling depressed and defeated by my 3-year-old throwing a fit in the bathroom at Joann's (screaming so much that one of the employees came to see if everything was ok because a couple of customers had mentioned it) that I mopped around the house when we got home and missed my time window to go out on the bike ride I had planned. It was such a nice day too. I really wish I would have gone, I know it would have made me feel better!

I remembered that today when I woke up not feeling good, and just too tired to want to do anything. Plus I went to Walmart and ended up spending all my money without even getting anything fun, which is always depressing. On the way home, I decided I'd just get out and do my run right away instead of waiting for the kids to get out of school to go to the track like I had planned. Plus we still needed to try out our new stroller!

My brother and sister-in-law came down this weekend and brought their single jogging stroller to trade for my double one since they just had their second baby, and I'm just down to one baby. I can't say I won't miss my good ol' double stroller, but I was excited to try out this new, smaller one out today! Elle was really excited too, can you tell?


Look how little and compact it is! And so cozy for Elle! This is the InStep 10k Stroller from who knows what year. I think it was already used when my sister-in-law got it.

The sun shade is way bigger than my old one. This one might actually do some good if it rained (we'll have to see about that, though), and it will definitely keep the sun off.


Pushing this little stroller was so much lighter and faster than the big one. Ok, Duh. I must say, it was a little harder to turn, though, because the front wheel is just locked into place. It doesn't swivel like my old one. On the other hand, the swiveling one sometimes got out of hand and the stroller would start shaking when I got going fast, so it was nice that it didn't do that.

I started off taking it pretty easy, but I was amazed at how fast I was going still. I don't know my exact time for the first mile because I stopped to take my jacket off and take this picture:


My pace was somewhere around 9:30 before I stopped, but it ended up averaging 10:19 because of my forgetfulness.

As soon as I finished my first mile, I started into my second mile which was going to be a fast interval. I was able to get going pretty fast, but it was really hard to keep that up because there were a couple streets to cross and I even kind of stopped for a second to show Elle a little duck, but then I remembered that I was supposed to be going fast!

That mile seemed to take forever, and it was really hard! I had to stop and walk to catch my breath when my (I mean Pete's) wonderful Garmin finally beeped.

My time was 8:41 which isn't my best, but I think it's pretty good considering I was pushing a stroller, and considering the whole duck sighting incident.

It just so happened that I finished that mile right at the spot I had wanted to take a picture of Monday, and this time I had my camera! (I think it had a little better lighting last time...)


I had totally planned on recovering, then turning around and doing another hard mile, but while I was stopped, I noticed that not one, but two of the stroller's tires were flat. Both of the back tires. No wonder it had seemed so hard at the end! I wonder how long they'd been like that.


That's what I get for trusting tires from my brother who likes to go "off road" with his stroller. We even pulled a thorn out when he unloaded it from his car. I made sure to check the tires before we left, thinking I might have to fix one, but they were good so we just went with it.

I ended up walking home, trying to push the stroller like a wheelbarrow so it wouldn't just be riding on the rims (and also because I hate the sound of squishy flat tires!), but that was very hard to do for very long since it doesn't have the wheelbarrow's low handles.

My third mile was 17:29

The last .75 took me 13:31

Total of 3.75 miles in exactly 50 minutes! Wahoo!

Despite the setbacks, I still really enjoyed my run/outing this morning. It was a beautiful day, and I was outside doing something, listening to some good music, and just happy to be alive and healthy enough to be able to be doing what I was doing. I felt so much better than before I left, and my day was really pretty good from there on out.

Elle was having a good time too and even fell asleep before we got home. She ended up sleeping for another hour and a half or so, which I think she really needed. Yesterday she was a little pill, and I think it must have been from being over-tired.

Overall, a successful test of the stroller. I'm excited to get those tires fixed and take it out again!