Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Long time no blog...

Well howdy! Yes, I realise it's been nearly 3 months since my last entry. Such is life... Some updates- I ran the 10K mentioned in the last post and had a blast. I did pretty well and enjoyed the course. I would do this race again next year in fact! I also had fun afterwards with friends. I will post a photo or two once I get home.

Sadly, training was spotty up until the ING Half on March 29th. I did not do as well as I had hoped, but in the end I did enjoy the run/sights. It was windy and cool at the start (pre-dawn) and actually continued to get colder as we went along. That part was tough. By the end, I just wanted a big coat. It was chilly while waiting for my friend Stuart to finish the full, but we went quickly to Stats nearby for lunch and beer, so it was well worth the chillbumps!

Since the race, I've been less-than-motivated to start training full time again. I have done a few shorter runs here and there, though. School and tutoring have just been way too busy to work in runs. However, this past Sunday, I finally got out for 3 miles on the Greenway. I did a few miles the weekend before as well. Monday, I was off school for a couple of doctor's appointments so I took advantage of the time to get another run in. The miles weren't pretty, but I got them done! This morning, I was up at 5:15 to do another 3 miles. It's been a while since I've done a pre-work, early morning run. I'm sitting at my desk at work now, trying to fight off a nap. Luckily today is field day, so I don't have any students in here! The weather this morning was just about perfect for running- upper 50s/lower 60s with a bit of wind and a bit of humidity. I can feel myself getting back into shape- going farther each time without my lungs wanting to explode. Hopefully by the weekend I will be able to do the 4 mile "long run" I've got planned for Sunday. Tomorrow is another pre-dawn 3 miler. I definitely predict a nap happening this afternoon once I get home from school!!!

Wednesday, February 18, 2009


After battling a sinus infection all last week, I finally was well enough to get in 2 longer runs this weekend. I was able to get in 7.4 miles last Sunday. This was my longest actual run in many months. It felt great in fact! Then Tuesday, despite waking up with a sinus headache, I went out for 4.5 miles. Thursday, I got in a 5k. Friday and Saturday I just felt too crappy, so I waited till Sunday. I was so happy to wake up infection-free. I got in 6.3 on Sunday (another good run!) and 7.5 on Monday. I wanted to go 8.5 but ran out of time (I was a few minutes late to work as it was). I took Tuesday off (obviously) and woke up early this morning to go out for 6. Unfortunately, the rain was coming down hard and in the dark, it would not be safe for me to be out there. It is looking like this will be thunderstorms by the afternoon, so likely no run after work either. Maybe I can get them in tomorrow morning before work if it's not in the 20s like they said it might be. Cross your fingers it is warmer.

I've been noticing a trend where I am really warming up the first mile, but then the rest of the run goes fine- breathing gets easier, legs just go, and I'm enjoying it. I'm happy about that. Only a little over 5 weeks left till the race. I've got a 10K this Saturday, so hopefully that will go well enough!

Saturday, February 7, 2009

Morning runners are friendlier

Or at least so they seem! I lost count of how many nods, smiles, "mornin'"s, and half waves I got this morning from fellow runners (probably at least 15!) Oddly, that was quite encouraging. I got out on the Greenway this morning for an intended 5 mile run. It was probably about 8:45? After the initial 1/2 mile of lungs rebelling against me, I started to glide. It was a really nice run on a cold, sunny morning. In fact when the nike+ lady said "1 mile to go" at the 4 mile point I was kind of sad! If I didn't have to go to work this morning, I would have gone ahead and done tomorrow's 7 miles instead. It was nice to realize at that point that I had finished those 4 miles fairly effortlessly. (yea me!) I'm looking forward to tomorrow's run for sure. I was planning on enjoying the warm weather later in the day, but *might* be motivated to go out earlier..... It just goes to show I guess I am a morning runner as long as I can do them without getting up at dark o'clock.

Oh, and I ended up going 5.5 instead of 5. :)

Sunday, February 1, 2009


Well, I got in a 6 mile run this afternoon in 60 degree sunny weather! That was a treat since it's about to become super cold again tomorrow. Yippee. This week will be challenging since it will just be freezing (literally) even after work. Blech. However, I definitely was able to appreciate today's weather! After today's run, I feel sure I will be able to do semi-well in the 10K in a few weeks.

I've been planning ahead for the summer this weekend, too. I've found two races I want to do in London! This is going to be fun! The first one is a 10K on July 4th. The 4th happens to land on a Saturday, so that worked out well. I was kind of sad I wouldn't be able to do the Peachtree Road Race again this summer, so it will be nice to still run something organized on the 4th. I'm thinking I'll have to wear some goofy red, white and blue! Heh. Here's the link. I may end up doing another race this day, but I definitely want to run a 10K on the 4th.

The other race I will definitely be doing this summer is the London 10k. In fact, since it seems to fill up pretty quickly, I went ahead and signed up today. No expectations except to have fun, since the course will be going by most of the cool places in London. I love it when plans start to come together. Now, I just need to look for something in Paris if I'm lucky!

Monday, January 26, 2009

Hills and more hills

Well, this morning I got up early early and did my longest ever pre-work morning run. I set out for 5 miles which I really needed to do yesterday, but just got too busy and eventually too tired to do. It was low 40s and fairly humid since it apparently is supposed to rain today. I started out down Old Milton/State Bridge. The first mile was ok and I could tell I was feeling pretty good, despite the early hour and weather. I continued to the half way mark (which was on the down side of a large hill way past the Shell station) and diligently turned around to make my way back up that hill. At this point, it was maybe the 4th hill I'd gone up? 5th? Sheesh. Somehow, my little legs carried me back up till I was rewarded with a nice downhill (then more up hill/down hill all the way till the final .5) As I got to that last .5 of the 5 miles, I was feeling pretty good still and happy with my hill climbing! So, I decided to go ahead and continue the run back to the apartment, instead of finishing at the corner as usual. This got me to 5.46 so I ran just a little longer to get to an even 5.5. If only I didn't have to go to work, I would have probably gone for 6.

It seems that these early morning runs are good for me. I usually try to run late afternoon when I have the chance on weekends, but I find my energy is surprisingly high in the mornings, too. Of course, I'm sitting at my desk at work typing this at 9:45am and wishing I could just take a nap. I'm working at the running shop tonight, so it will be a long day ahead still. Oh well, at least I didn't compromise my run! I feel good about next month's 10K on Feb. 21st. Should be a nice race in fact.

Here's the nike+ graph for this morning (though I'm not sure why it shows so hilly. My speed didn't vary that much and the original graph looks flatter! I think the small box skews the actual graph.):

Monday, January 19, 2009

Running with Friends

A friend from Indiana was in town for the week for a business training class. Luckily, we were able to arrange to meet up a couple of times while she was here. The first night, we just had dinner since it was too late for a run (already dark). But we planned for a run on Friday afternoon. We headed to a nearby park that I knew of, but had never run in. Luckily there was a bit of a running trail, so we decided on 3 miles and started out. The trail was a bit convoluted with some false trails leading to dead ends. We did eventually get going the right way and had a nice, mildly hilly run! Here's the Nike+ graph for it. I have to say, this is one of the first times in my life I felt faster than someone! I don't run with others very often and it was quite odd to feel like I needed to slow down! I could have gone farther for sure.

You can see where we had to turn around after the first mile or so, due a dead end (led out to a regular road!)

Here's a photo of us post run and post dinner in the lobby of her hotel:

I had a few other good runs that week, as well. It's amazing what a little consistency can do. I'm trying to take advantage of any days I don't have to work 2 jobs to get in some afternoon runs when it's warmer. I will be doing some more pre-work freezing runs, though. It's just January, but I'm already looking forward to Spring!! We've still got many weeks of cold weather ahead, though.

I ended up not running for a week due to crazy scheduling/extreme weather (sorry, 12*F is too cold for me and the asthma). I had a nice run on the Greenway yesterday, though. It was great to make it out to that trail. I know every turn so well, that it's very comfortable to run there, despite the weather. Plus, with all the other folks out riding bikes, walking, playing with their dogs or running, there's plenty of scenery to take in. I've got 5 miles on deck for today. It's cloudy and still cold, so I'm not sure where I'll run them. Maybe I'll go back out to the Greenway?

Sunday, January 4, 2009

ATC Resolution Run, January 1, 2009 and Marion,VA!

Well, I knew I couldn't start the year off without having some sort of run on New Year's Day. A fellow runner friend suggested we meet up for the Atlanta Track Club's yearly Resolution Run and I figured it would be the best way to ensure I get out there on the first day of the year, no excuses. They offered a 5k and a 10k, which did turn out to be two loops of the 5k route. I haven't run an honest 6 miles in a loooooong time, so I went with the 5k. I had arrived way ahead of start time. I thought we were starting at noon, but it turned out that was the kids' 1 mile run. We weren't off till 12:20. In fact, we were all waiting around near the start and with little warning or fanfare, everyone just started running! We almost missed it!

I'm pretty sure I started off a bit too fast, but the crowd pulled me along. I really wasn't out to prove anything (except that I could actually wake up on New Year's Day and run!) and aimed to keep a fairly even pace. The course was through an industrial office park near Town Center Mall in Kennesaw. It was cold-ish (mid 30s) but sunny. I pulled off the gloves after mile 1. Luckily, no issues with asthma. Here's the Nike+ graph of the run. You can see the hills pretty easily!

Overall, I'm pretty happy with my final time- 33:11 or :12 (gun time was 33:14, I think). I haven't even run a formal 5k in a while. This was well worth the drive and the $5. Plus, I had a great time with some friends with a nice lunch afterwards. Here's the photo I posted on my 365 of Elizabeth, Heather and Charles at TGI Friday's post-race:

And here's another photo Elizabeth took of Heather and me in the restaurant....

All in all, it was a great start to the new year! I will definitely be doing this run again next year if I can!

And, I've already had my second run of the year. Friday, Mandy and I headed up to Marion, VA to visit the brother, sister-in-law, and baby Willow. Saturday morning, I got up and did 3.5 around the small town of Marion. It's also a bit hilly there, but I enjoyed running in a different location. I have to note, though, that apparently NO ONE in the ENTIRE town runs! I noticed most everyone staring at me through their car windows as they drove by! It was a bit creepy at times (like the pervy guy in the back seat with his face pressed up against the side window!! No joke!!), but most of the time I just ignored them. I did get one friendly hello from a guy on his porch as I passed. Ah, the joys of small town life! Most I get around here in Alpharetta is a honk or two as they pass by!

I did want to say, though, that with just a week and half of consistency, I already can tell a difference in my endurance. (yay!) Lungs are better and runs seem easier. Don't want to jinx anything, but I feel good! Looking forward to a nice run tomorrow after school in the warm winter weather.