Yoga and Speedwork

In going with my theme of quality over quantity this training period, I have designated Monday’s for Yoga, Tuesday’s for interval runs, and Thursday’s for tempo runs.

I started the week off on Monday with a Yoga for Athletes online class. (The link will take you to the class if you’re interested in trying it.) It’s taught by Sage Rountree who practices yoga in the Raleigh-Durham area; about an hour or so away from me. Here’s more about her background and the class:

(Source)
This online yoga class for athletes and everyone is part of a weekly series taught by Sage Rountree, an endurance sports coach, runner and triathlete herself. She regularly writes for Runner’s World and Yoga Journal online and has several books and DVDs. In this particular class, we look at our nemeses: poses that frustrate us. Find more freedom in Warrior I; fly into crow; open into camel; experiment with really letting go in corpse pose. Along the way, you’ll build strength, flexibility, focus, and the equanimity to approach both the poses you love and the poses you find challenging.”

It was a good class, the first of hers that I’ve practiced, but it was pretty slow for me. I like power or (vinyasa) flow style yoga the best, but I still learned a few good stretches I can incorporate during my post-run cool downs.

If you’re interested in more Yoga for Athletes- style classes, here is a list of DVDs I found on a Runner’s World forum.

Yesterday was my first speed work day and I must say I am a huge fan thus far. It was a cool morning here in NC (around 60 degrees!) and I got a tough workout in before 7:15am; a great way to start any day. 

intervals

Breakdown:
10 min warm up
6 x (1 min fast, 3 mins easy)
10 min cool down

I saw lots of other runners in the neighborhood I ran in; just another reminder that I love doing this!

(Source)

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Taking Chances

In early December via my Twitter feed, I saw someone “tweet” that the NYC Half Marathon application period was about to open. I thought it’d be pretty sweet to run through the heart of NYC in an organized race, and in one of the top national races at that!

So, thinking I had absolutely no chance in the universe to be accepted, I created a profile. Logical, right? Nothing like keeping your confidence boosted while you have no chance and currently can not run. Regardless, I filled out the application, paid them a measly $5, hit submit, and waited. Not patiently though.

The drawing took place on December 29, 2011. The day came and went and I was anxious all day re-loading my profile page every 30 minutes via my phone.

Seriously.

The page kept giving me a message about “the drawing is in progress, please come back later.” If you think I’m a patient person, I am in some things, but not this. My husband was really sick of me saying, “ughhhh still nothing! This is torture!”

By about 9:30pm I still hadn’t heard yay or nay. I got curious and started checking Twitter and there were a lot of tweets about people who had been accepted. I just figured I hadn’t and I moped for about 15 minutes (ok more like an hour) but then I was over it… I didn’t really think I would be chosen anyway, right? Plus, if you enter the race 3 years in a row and get denied, you will get a guaranteed entry into the race on the 4th year. All I had to do was wait 3 more years..

December 30 (Friday) morning I woke up at my in-laws house, still visiting from the holidays, and decided to check just to make sure. Surely they would have processed everything in 24 hours and it’d be posted.

As I reloaded the page, this is what I saw:

nyc half marathon screen acceptance

DO YOU SEE THAT?!

Status: ACCEPTED

I am really sick of looking at that guy, whoever he is.

I’m in! I’m so in!

The race takes place on Sunday, March 18, 2012. Here’s the course map. We start in Central park, run through Times Square, then along the west side highway, and finish at the South Street Seaport.

Now you know why it’s so urgent that I get my hip under control. I start physical therapy tomorrow and I can’t wait to get there.

Like a good student, I started foam rolling the crap out of my legs this past Sunday and have found a pretty good amount of knots. I’ve been keeping that up daily, along with hip-opening yoga poses and calisthenics.

Even though the injury journey isn’t completely finished yet, another journey is about to begin. Whatever, I’m good with multi-tasking.

13.1 miles in NYC. Let’s go!

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                        (Taking the stairs to the top of the Eiffel Tower in Paris!)

I’m stoked.

 

Declaration: Mistletoe Half Marathon

Ok that’s it. I’m rested. I’m ready to run.

Clear the road people, Beth needs to stretch her legs!

I was probably ready yesterday but I gave myself 2 extra days. Tomorrow (Tuesday) I will officially be back into running since the marathon.

My foot pain is gone (we’ll see if it returns when I start to run, in which case I’m going straight to the doctor to get it looked at) my hip pain is relatively gone. I just need some yoga in my life and I think the hip pain will go away. Yoga is on the list for a workout sometime this week, I just need to check the class schedule at my gym.

I’m thinking about trying an actual Yoga Studio to get the full experience. I just have a hard time paying for both a gym membership and a yoga studio, especially when my gym offers yoga a few times each week. We’ll see how that goes..

As I was driving  riding back from Savannah last weekend, I was setting my sights on which race to run next. I had been talking with my friend, Tyna, and we decided to do a 5k together. I got to looking at the race organization’s website a little closer and found out there was a half marathon option!

So..as of last week I committed myself to a half marathon not even a full month out from the full marathon.

I’m not going for speed records at this race though, it’s simply for fun. I even bought a few fun surprises for race day!

The race is the Mistletoe Half Marathon in Winston-Salem and it benefits the awareness and support of programs that are committed to stop childhood obesity. It’s on December 3rd and I’m so excited to just have fun and run for a great cause!

Are you signed up for any Turkey Trots or Holiday fun runs in your city?

1 Week Post-Marathon and Goals

It’s been one week since I ran my first marathon.

How did it go?

Well.. a lot better than I thought, actually.

This is me and I’m excited!!

The drive home to Greensboro from Savannah on Sunday went pretty well. Since I was a passenger, I had plenty of time to massage my quads/hamstrings for the 6+ hour drive home. Thank goodness for that.

You may have seen me putting on my compression socks after the marathon..

I will swear by these as long as I run. They work.

I debated for 8 months whether or not to buy these and I wish I hadn’t waited so long. They’re amazing, and I had NO calf/shin/ankle/foot soreness after wearing these. See a scientific review here and my thoughts on these earlier in the year here. I wore the socks from 30 minutes post race – 36 hours after.

Monday
Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness set in. It was the most painful day of recovery, ever. Hands down. I walked funny, I avoided stairs, I did not bend down to pick anything up. I seeked handicap ramps into buildings on campus to avoid stairs. When I had to attempt stairs, I ended up breaking into a sweat and on the verge of tears. I think I got some pretty weird glances at work, but whatever. I ran my heart out, I’m not sorry.

I should mention that Brandon ended up with a stress fracture in his foot and came home from Savannah with a boot. This meant I would be taking the dog out, every time, up and down 36 steps. Thank goodness my mother-in-law was here Monday and Tuesday to help me with this painful task. When I did take the pup out, I took the stairs backwards. You may look crazy or like you’re 85, but it sure beats crying as you walk down a flight of stairs.

I came home from work that day and immediately foam rolled for 30+ minutes. Another invention that has boosted my quality of life during training.

Tuesday
More relief.  I could take the stairs up, but coming down was still quite a task. I massaged my quads, foam rolled when I got home from work, but overall it was a great improvement from Monday.

Wednesday
Feeling more confident with stairs. Up was no problem and down was progressing towards normal.

After work, my friend Tyna met me at campus for a run. This was the first day of running for me since the marathon and is really the first advised day of running, per Hal Higdon.

We went for an easy, slow 3 mile run. My pace was near 11 minutes/mile. Holy Moley.  All that damage to my muscles was showing. It felt good to get back out there though.

I had some left hamstring pain during the run and some right foot pain..

I stretched out the pain of my hamstring and kept going, but eventually I became concerned about my foot pain and called it quits at 3 miles. I was fine with that and came home to rest and ice it.

Thursday
Foot pain still present, hips feeling a little out of line or something..

Friday
Same story as Thursday.

Saturday
Tired of not getting any physical activity other than walking at work, I went to the gym for Spin class. It was non-impact so I didn’t have to worry about my hips or foot, I could still get a good cardio workout in, and felt semi-normal for having some kind of exercise on a Saturday morning.

I can tell I will miss my long runs if I can’t get back into them soon.

Other than that, recovery has been going well.

I’ve been adapting my eating to mimic how much exercise I’m doing. That has actually been easier than I thought it would be.

During training I was eating A. LOT. I was burning a lot of calories and therefore, had to eat more to fuel.

Now that I’m not running 25-30+ miles per week, I my appetite has markedly decreased. I’m not craving simple sugars (desserts) as much as I was (for calories) and I am relatively at a good place with calorie balance.

GOALS
I am SO EXCITED to not have a plan, for once this year.

Let me remind you that 2011 started off with training for my first half marathon in April.

Training starting in late January-April.

2 months off from training, had me preparing for marathon training.

July 5, 2011 Marathon Training Began.

I have not been training for a race for a grand total of 3 out of 11 months of 2011.

I’ve made great gains this year. I’ve developed as a person. I have more self-confidence than I ever have.

To finish out 2011, I have a goal to complete at least one more race. For fun though, not to set a new PR (personal record). It could be a 5k, 10k, half marathon, whatever. I just want to do one more before 2011 wraps up.

My goal for winter is to incorporate more yoga into my weekly exercise routine. I need the flexibility and I loved it when I did it for a few weeks back in May. I felt so strong, so centered.

I just want to do what I feel like doing, in the form of exercise. If I want to do elliptical for 45 minutes, I’ll do it. If I want to take a Spin or Body Pump class, I’ll do it.

I love the holidays and I’ll still run, but I’ll do it because I love it, not as part of a plan.

I’m looking ahead to 2012 and looking at which races I’ll be participating in. A few I have in mind are: Cooper Bridge Run,  Rock ‘n’ Roll Nashville, The Flying Pig, The Indianapolis Mini Marathon, The Chicago Marathon and maybe the Rock ‘n’ Roll Savannah Half Marathon.

No matter what happens, I know I’ll be running.

Here’s to finishing goals, coming out stronger, and setting new goals to look forward to!!