Wednesday, February 15, 2012

i have hope.

i feel like lately i've been re-living a portion of my life that started back in may 2009.

it was then, when i started losing weight and getting healthy and fit. i started running, ran a half marathon and then a full marathon.  it was when i was training for my second marathon that i injured myself.  partial tear to my gluteus medius (muscle in hip). couldn't run for 3 months. it was a long road coming back. physical therapy and basically started from scratch running again. i swore to myself that i would not run in pain, that i would not get caught up in training for anything, and i would take it easy.  well, everything just flew out the window with the mention of a race.  Sure...sign up for the San Luis Obispo Marathon...sure, just pile on the miles, despite my feet and knee hurting.  what was i thinking??  what is wrong with me?? 

so here i am...back to where i started.  full circle.  trying to whittle off the weight i gained during the 3 months i was out with my hip injury.  basically starting over with my running AGAIN!  haven't run in 12 days. and not sure when i will be able to.  i went to the dr.  he did x-rays of my feet and found heel spurs in both.  MRI to come on the knee.  dr. wants to rule out a torn meniscus, but honestly, the knee is feeling better with just rest. 

even with the heel spurs i am able to ride the bike at the gym.  which is truly a life-saver...well, sanity-saver.  being able to sweat has really helped with my whole mindset.  i am able to keep a positive attitude and am able to continue losing weight.  i joined weight watchers again.  i just love the accountability and the motivation i get from being in a room of people who are struggling with the same thing i am. it's really comforting to know i am not alone.

i am trying to focus on what i am able to do, and not what i can't.  trying to stay positive.  i am able to ride the bike and that's what i'll continue to do.  i know that doing intervals, whether it be running or riding, with help with fat loss.  so that is what i'm doing.  being mindful of my thoughts, and taking them captive, and making them obedient to Christ.  letting my mind dwell on only things that are true, noble, right, pure, admirable, excellent and praiseworthy.  this is exactly what our bible study group is talking about right now. God's timing is amazing!  HE knows exactly what we need and when we need it.  HE is my comfort.  HE is my strength. HE is my hope.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

"There is a difference between interest and committment.

When you're interested in doing something,
you do it only when it's convenient.

When you're committed to something,
you accept no excuses: only results."

-Ken Blanchard

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

return to running...

love this nike ad!

so here i am...
easing back into the miles..
hip is feeling great. no pain & only occaisional stiffness.

i wrote out a plan to gradually build up my miles.

last week i ran about 14 miles during my four 30minute runs...
my run days are tues, thurs, sat, sun.
i will be riding the bike at the gym for cross-training,
and continue to do my hip/core strengthening exercises 2-3 times a week.

here is the run schedule:

week 1:  4mi, 4mi, 3mi, 5mi = 16mi
week 2:  4mi, 5mi, 3mi, 6mi = 18mi
week 3:  5mi, 5mi, 3mi, 7mi = 20 mi
week 4:  3mi, 3mi, 3mi, 3mi = 12mi  recovery week
week 5:  5mi, 6mi, 3mi, 8mi = 22mi
week 6:  6mi, 6mi, 4mi, 9mi = 25mi
week 7:  6mi, 7mi, 5mi, 10mi = 28mi
week 8:  4mi, 4mi, 4mi, 4mi = 16mi  recovery week
week 9:  7mi, 7mi, 5mi, 12mi = 31mi
week 10: 7mi, 8mi, 5mi, 14mi = 34mi
week 11: 5mi, 5mi, 5mi, 5mi = 20mi  recovery week
week 12: 7mi, 9mi, 6mi, 14mi = 37mi
week 13: 8mi 10mi 6mi, 12mi = 36 mi
week 14: 8mi, 10mi, 6mi, 12mi = 36mi

my goal is to get back in shape, and its probably gonna take awhile.
i'm up for the challenge!


p.s.  i started posting my workouts on  come join the fun...add me as a friend!

Saturday, July 23, 2011

up and running...

its been a long road back to running...and i'm just barely back...but i'm running.


on june 1, i started seeing a new PT.  A sports med PT...makes all the difference in the world.  the very first visit she gave me strengthening exercises to do.  i almost cried.  i was so excited to actually be doing something.  after a month of doing nothing at a different PT place, and then the wait for the MRI, the diagnosis, it had been 10 weeks of basically nothing. i felt like i was getting weaker by the day. it became more and more depressing. and i was eating.  eating because i felt sorry for myself and i was sad, and i was stressed, and i was in pain.   but on that first day in june...i got a glimmer of hope back...that i would run again..and she didn't anticipate it taking long.  i was jumping out of my skin in excitement!

That first PT appt, she gave me a sheet of exercises to do...and i did them...and did them.  like in the usual rachelle fashion, i overdid them. i even broke the resistance band she gave me, doing too many "clams"  :)   anywhoo...went back again and she checked on my progress...gave me more exercises and sent me on my way.  i only saw her once a week because our copay was so stinkin' high...but believe me, i was making sure i did everything she told me.  went back to PT on june 24th feeling SO much better than i had been or ever expected to.  she told me to get on the treadmill.  warmed up with a walk, and gradually into a jog.  i'm telling you...huge lump in my throat. i couldn't believe i was running.  it had been 13 weeks since i last ran.  and that one mile jog was so sweet. it felt SO good. it's hard for me to describe it, but it was like being able to breathe again.  freedom.  and it gave me hope that i'd be on the road soon.

on that day, she released me from PT.  told me to keep up the exercises, and start a gradual run/walk program to start building up my miles.   i couldn't wait to get started, but at the same time, there was an apprehension.  i didn't want to make my hip was starting to feel good.  it was still stiff/sore, but not the pain like had been there before.  we were going on vacation for the next week, so i decided to wait on the run/walk until we got back.  i figured i would get enough exercise walking around disney for 3 days  :)

started my run/walk program with 4min run/2min walk for 30 minutes total on july 2nd. i've been on an every other day schedule.  on the off-days, i've been cycling at the gym and doing my exercises.  from the 4min/2min, i progressed to 7min/3min, and then to 13min/2min, then 14min/1min, and finally running for a whole 30 minutes.  i've been running for 30-40 minutes for two weeks now, and everything feels great.  mind you i am no longer able to keep my fast pace, but am cruising at 10:00-10:30's.  i know the speed will come back when i start to run more miles, but i'm just trying to keep things easy for now.  i did try a tiny bit of speed at the end of one of my down to 8:07 pace. excited!

Rich started back running again with me.  it's been so nice to be able to run with him in the mornings. love our time together.

i'm really trying to concentrate on just getting back up to about 40 miles a week...not training for anything.  i don't want to think about pushing myself...yet.  gotta finish healing...and when i'm 100% then i will decide.  but i am so thankful just to be running.

my time away from running has given me alot of perspective.  love how GOD works!!  i love running and am passionate about it, but i love the LORD more and need to make sure HE comes first.  i can't get caught up in the trap of getting my priorities all out of whack!  been there...done that.   i think this was the lesson that GOD wanted me to learn during this season of injury. Always put HIM HIM always.

Many are the plans in a  man's heart, but it is the LORD's purpose that prevails.  Proverbs 19:21

GOD wants us to live beyond ourselves...and that is going to be my focus.

"don't make life all about you!"....heard this the other day...and its been stuck in my brain every since.

so many things i have learned through this season. so many things that i need to work on and grow. my renewed focus has me excited for the future.  can't wait to see what GOD has planned.

i'll leave you with this video of running through GOD's amazing creation...
beautiful country...

Saturday, June 11, 2011

how about a swim??

Escape from  Alcatraz triathlon 2011 swim in San Francisco taken with a GoPro camera.  pretty cool!

Thursday, May 26, 2011

UltraRunning from Matt Hart on Vimeo.

it's been about 9 weeks since i've run.
eventhough i can't run...watching someone run makes me feel better. i feel inspired.

i still have the drive to go out and run my heart out.  i was very afraid that taking this much time off...that i would fall back into my old slothful ways.  but that hasn't been the case. 

the drive is as high as ever...but i am trying not to let it consume me...i need to have balance. 

my body will heal with time.  i want to speed up the process of healing, but i don't want to be crazy-over-th-top about it.  i need to keep my priorities in check...which has always been hard for me.  i am not a balanced person.  i have a one-track-mind kind of personality.  i pick one thing and try to do it to my very best.  it consumes me.  takes over my every thought.  it's not a good place to be in.  i need balance.  need to make sure that God is at the center of my life...always...and doesn't get pushed to the side because of whatever my new "thing" is. 

there is an awesome article i read a few years ago called, Tyranny of the Urgent.  I reread it today.  “Your greatest danger is letting the urgent things crowd out the important.”  Because i am a very anxious person...everything seems like its urgent to me.  Need to remind myself to breath, slow down, and rest in HIM.  my plans are not HIS plans. Concentrate on the important stuff...his word...his people...his plans...not mine.  

now what does that look like?

that is what i'm going to have to work on. 

but i know for is being thankful for the season that i am in. God has a reason for everything.  I am definitely in a season of growing.  not always such a fun place to be in...but it's for a reason. God only wants the best for me and these are his plans.  

i know it means...making a point each day to spend time in his word.  putting his TRUTHS in my heart.  not thinking negatively...not being fearful. having faith that God is BIG ENOUGH to handle ALL my cares & worries. 

i know it means...not focusing on myself...but on others.  each day, looking how i can be a blessing to the people around me. 

i know it means...slowing down..letting my mind settle..and enjoy life.  i spend so much of my time planning/worrying about the next "thing" on my list.  i often miss out on what is happening now. i want to be more joyful. be happy.

i'm sure i will have alot more things to add to this's just a start.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Tart Cherry Juice: Analysis of Journal Article

Tart Cherry Juice: Protector and Pain-Reliever

Kuehl et al., Efficacy of tart cherry juice in reducing muscle pain during running; a randomized controlled trial. Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition 2010, 7:17



Long distance running is known to cause muscle damage thereby causing inflammation. Tart cherries are a source of phenol compounds that are known for being full of anti-oxidants and useful as an anti-inflammatory. Previous studies have been conducted that show reduced inflammation in healthy men and women with an intake of approximately 45 cherries per day. The objective of this study was to test the effectiveness of tart cherry juice on long distance runners to see if it lessens muscle pain.


This was a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled study. 54 healthy runners (36 male, 18 female) ages 35.8 +/- 9.6 years, volunteered to participate in the study and run the Oregon Hood to Coast Relay Race. Subjects were placed on teams, where each would run 3 segments of the relay race. The race included steep ascents and descents, and each subject averaged 26.3km +-2.5km (approx. 16.3mi total) over a 24 hour time period. The subjects agreed not to use any anti-inflammatory drugs or other pain relieving practices such as acupuncture, steroids, or topical medications. Frozen tart Cultivar Montmorency cherries, and apple juice were used to make the “juice”. It was packaged in 10.5oz bottles, which contained 600mg phenol compounds, equivalent to 45-50 cherries. The placebo was unsweetened fruit punch soft drink mixed with water and sugar to match the concentration of the tart cherry juice. For the study, data was collected at 3 different times. Day 1 (baseline) was 7 days prior to the race. Day 7 was Race Start, and Day 8 was Race End. On day 1 (baseline), the subjects participated in a health screening, and were asked to assess their pain intensity on the 100mm Visual Analog Scale, where 0 was ”no pain”, and 100 was ”most severe pain”. The subjects were given 16-355mL bottles of juice. They were instructed to drink 2 bottles daily before the race (14 bottles over 7 days) and 2 bottles during the race itself. On day 7 there was a physician screening and pain assessment prior to the race starting. On day 8, at the race’s conclusion, the subjects were screened and asked to assess their pain, as well as a satisfaction/willingness to use drink again survey (Likert Scale).


Out of the 54 subjects starting the trial, 3 withdrew, 26 people were assigned the tart cherry juice, and 25 drank the placebo. After day 1 assessments, the cherry group had higher pain scores, despite participants being in randomly assigned groups. (16.1 vs. 6.1) Day 7 (Race Start) assessments showed the placebo group 8.0 versus 10.6 for the tart cherry juice group. At Race’s End (Day 8), the placebo group was 45.3 versus 22.6 for the tart cherry group. The tart cherry juice group showed less pain at the race’s end than the placebo group. And the tart cherry group had a higher satisfaction and willingness to use the drink again.

Author’s Conclusion

Running does cause muscle damage & inflammation. All the participants showed an increase in pain after the race. The tart cherry juice group showed a smaller increase in pain after the race than the placebo group. The results of the study indicate there is a protective benefit for the muscles from the tart cherry juice, and it is effective in reducing muscle pain during an endurance event.



One of the strengths of this trial was that it was randomized, double-blind, and placebo controlled. The participants were randomly placed in groups that were unknown to both the participants and the researchers. This type of study is much more convincing, and less likely to be influenced by any bias’ the researchers may have. A second strength of this trial was the race that was chosen. The Hood to Coast Relay is the largest relay in the world. The 197 mile course took runners from Mt. Hood (6000 ft elevation at the start) to the Pacific Ocean. The course had varying terrain with many steep ascents and descents. It was surely a challenging course for the participants and was definitely the needed stimulus for muscle damage.


One limitation of this study was the use of the 100mm Visual Analog Scale in assessing the subject’s pain. The scale was marked at one end 0”no pain”, and the other end, 100 “most severe pain”. I believe that this scale is too difficult to accurately define the amount of pain a subject is feeling. Pain tolerances vary widely, and what may be severe pain to one person, may not be the same for another. There are no other markers or descriptors on the scale, such as “pain can be ignored”, or “pain interferes with tasks”, or “pain interferes with concentration”. These descriptors would have added information so the subjects could have better assessed how much pain they were feeling and then it could have been more easily compared with the other subjects. It is extremely hard to get an accurate picture as to the amount of damage that occurred to the muscles by using pain assessments such as the VAS. Another limiting factor was the possibility of the subjects switching drinks without the researchers knowing. This presents a problem because the data may have become contaminated.


This study was of particular interest to me because I am a runner and deal with muscle aches and pains often. I was curious to find out if the tart cherry juice provided the subjects any protection against muscle damage. The article was extremely easy to read and interpret. As I examined the article, I kept wondering how much experience the subjects had as runners. Being a relatively new runner myself, I did not have a lot of knowledge about training when I first started. I just finished 18 weeks of marathon training and learned a great deal, especially how diet and nutrient timing can play a significant role in recovery. This may have been a factor during the study if some participants ate a diet of carbohydrates and protein right after finishing their workouts, thereby reducing pain and increasing recovery rates. The subjects were asked to refrain from using other methods of pain relief, like acupuncture, topical creams, pain relieving drugs, but there is no mention of any dietary guidelines for the week before the race or during the race itself. The subjects were told to consume 2 bottles of juice during the race, but were not given any specific time. I also wondered what the subjects ate after finishing their legs of the race. This may have helped in their recovery and pain relief by the end of the race. Another question that I had centered on the fact that despite being put into random groups, the cherry group had much high pain scores than the placebo group at Day 1 assessments. If the cherry group already had some sort of low-level pain at the baseline assessment, could they become “used to” the pain and may not have a true assessment of their discomfort? Another question that crossed my mind was how “hard” did each participant race. People vary in their ability to tolerate pain and their intensity levels can vary. A person may feel they are racing their hardest and it may be at 75% of their maximum heart rate, while another person raced their hardest at 85% of their maximum heart rate. The ability to push harder, or intensity, may yield in more acute muscle damage. There are many variables that could affect the amount of muscle injury and recovery, which may not necessarily be attributed to the tart cherry juice. The only recommendation I could make is to find a more objective way to measure muscle damage, possibly using muscle biopsies to obtain data.


Tart cherries are known to have high antioxidant properties and help in reducing inflammation in the body. They are also known for neutralizing free radicals and helping repair and prevent damage done by the free radicals in the body. After analyzing this trial, I think the researchers accomplished their objectives for the study. The trial showed that the tart cherry juice group exhibited less than half the pain than the placebo group at the race’s end. It was also shown that the tart cherry group had the most satisfaction and willingness to try the drink again. Despite the subjective nature of pain assessment used in this study, I would try the cherry juice to see if it effective. I think this study is one that could be applied to many more people. Since the tart cherry juice lessened the pain associated with running, it may be useful in recovery from injuries or general soreness, where other anti-inflammatories would normally be used.

Monday, March 21, 2011

modesto race report

the gang at the expo

carbo loading at carino's italian restaurant

after being hurt off and on for the last month, with my hip problem...and being that my training was sporatic...i was ready to get this show on the road.  i felt rested, and in the last few days my hip really started to feel great.   i was eagerly awaiting this weekend/race.  we left fresno about 1:30 or drove and holly, jim and andi rode with us.   a fun little two hour ride to modesto. 

we got to the hotel and met up with more of our friends and checked into our room and then headed to the expo.  we grabbed our bibs and goodie bags and i ended up buying a 2.00 rain poncho.

the forecast did not look good for the start.  it was already raining when we got there, and the winds had started to pick up.  the prediction for the start was 44 degrees with winds sse 24mph.  i was trying really hard to not even think about the weather.  my brain just couldn't comprehend 24mph. i've never run in wind like that.

after the expo we had a little bit of time until we had to be at dinner.  we went back to the rooms and settled in...laid out my racing outfit, pinned my GU's in my shorts, and tried on different shirts.  I couldn't decide what to wear.  I guess the best bet is to dress in can just peel them off and drop them.  we also stretched/foam rolled a little bit, and watched tv.  we had two adjoining rooms.  jim stayed with rich and i...and the other room was packed with girls :)  holly, andi, sarah, pearl & becky rounded out the bunch.  such a fun group!! 

finally it was time for dinner.  i was starving.  we made our way to carino's italian restuarant, where we met up with a few other people. there was a nice big group of us.  just hanging out and talking, and of course, filling up on yummy carbs.  i had the lasagna and ate lots of bread, plus a salad.  i wanted to make sure i had lots of energy for my run :)

it was about 7:30 or so and we headed back to the hotel to hang out and get to bed early.  lots of chatting and still trying to figure out what to wear because the weather was getting worse by the minute.  the winds had really started to pick up and it was getting cold.  finally we hit the hay about 10 or so and had the alarms set for 5:15.  race time was 7a.m.  our hotel was pretty much at the starting line, so we didn't have to hurry out in the morning, or worry about driving or parking.  i fell asleep right away and slept for a good while, but then started to toss and turn.  laying there, the only thing i could hear was the wind whipping outside. 

finally the alarm went off.  got up and made coffee first thing...gotta get things moving, if you know what i mean. LOL  had a whole wheat bagel with PB2 and a banana for breakfast, along with my coffee. had a nice leisurely breakfast and then got dressed.  i had pinned my number to my shorts, since i had no idea of what shirt i would end up wearing.  i ended up wearing a black tank, and my pink compression shirt, and then i had a black throw-away long sleeve shirt on top of that...and then i had the rain poncho. i was ready for anything. :)  my friend john, who was going to be running with me, was driving up from fresno, with another friend of ours who was pacing the 4:15 group.  he arrived at our room a little after 6 to hang out and wait for race time with us.  at 6:30 we headed downstairs to hang out in the lobby with the other runners who were staying at the hotel.  about 6:50 we headed out to the starting line.  rich had decided not to run the 5k, so he was hanging out with us and planned to follow us around and cheer for us :)

we sang the national anthem, and then we were off.  walking at first, and then a jog.  with all my gear on, i was warm. it wasn't raining, and by the first aid station i was ready to ditch my ponch.  the first part of the marathon meandered around a neighborhood so the houses seemed to block alot of the wind.  john and i were just chatting and easing into our pace.  planned to run the first couple at about 9:20's, then try to keep the next few around 9:10, and then settle into 9:00's.  the race was not super crowded.  there were only 500 people doing the full marathon and 1500 doing the half.  around mile 3 i needed to go to the bathroom, and held it until the next aid station, where i decided to gu and take my salt tab. the miles were flying by pretty easily.  we started to see the lead half-marathoners coming towards us back to the finish line.  a few of our friends passed us and we cheered them on.  rich showed up on the course every few miles to cheer us on.  it gave me such a lift to have him there. 
(miles 1-7...9:30, 9:16, 9:12, 9:20 (bathroom stop), 9:03, 9:10, 9:07)

mile 7 is where the half marathoners turned around and we headed the other direction. this is also where we headed out into the country roads through the orchards.  it was more open and so the wind started to pick up a little bit.  it wasn't raining, just overcast.  the wind was blowing across us, not really infront or behind us.  john and i were still chatting clicking off the miles.
(miles 8-14...9:11, 9:17, 9:13, 9:03, 8:57, 9:00, 9:05)

early on...still feeling good.
 about mile 14.5 or so is where the turn around was for us.  we made the turn, grabbed some GU brew and water and headed home :) john had to make a pit stop and said he'd catch up. i was now running right into the wind.  it took my breath away at first.  i tucked my head down and pointed my hat directly into the wind.  i ran alone for a little bit and saw my friend sherrie coming the other direction.  she was pacing the 4:15 group and yelled encouragement and asked where john was.  LOL  it felt like i was climbing a huge hill that wouldn't end.  i still felt strong, but wished for a break. hoping it would die down just for a short time. the wind continued like this until the finish. (miles 15-20...9:14, 9:34, 9:37, 9:43, 9:39, 9:47)

starting around mile 20 my quads began to burn.  the wind was relentless and my heartrate was really high.  i told john i was going to walk through the aid station to see if it would go down.  and it helped, a little.  i've been taking GU's every 45 minutes and salt tabs every hour and i'm feeling pretty good, despite my quads burning.  seeing rich every few miles helped a ton, because at this point i was starting to get tired.  around mile 23 is when i really started to struggle mentally. we had to make a little climb up the overpass...i kept telling myself...don't stop til you get to the top....i'm almost there...quads on fire...i have to walk.  and then i hear a car honking...i turn around, and its rich. i just started laughing, but i start to run again.  it was hard even going downhill with that wind.  john was talking to me, trying to keep me distracted, even trying to make me mad.  he's running a little in front of me, and says i'm gonna leave this time...i'm just exhausted...i say...ok, go ahead. LOL  i knew what he was trying to do.  i knew i had to keep going.  the wind had not stopped...and i just wanted to finish.  we finally made the last turn and could see the finish line.  I saw everyone cheering for us.  our whole group was there...taking pictures and yelling.  so happy to finish, and with a great time.  better than i could have imagined in these conditions.
(miles 21-26...9:39, 10:09, 10:40, 11:08, 10:56, 11:07)  official chip time  4:14:35

close to the finish

almost there...

the finish is in sight...

one last push.

hanging out after the race with sarah & andi...

jim, holly, me, john, sherrie

soaking in the pool after...our icebath.

the wind made it colder outside the pool than inside.

lunch on our way home at panera's

after the race we headed back to the hotel room.  we grabbed something to snack on and went down to the pool for an "ice bath".  the water felt warmer than the air.  my teeth were chattering :)  after the pool, we hopped into the jacuzi for a few minutes.  then it was up to the room to gather our gear and check out.  we hit the road and stopped for lunch in turlock.  panera is yummy.  so thankful that god has blessed me with so many amazing friends.  what a great race weekend!!

Friday, March 18, 2011

Wednesday, March 16, 2011


that's right...
the forecast for the weekend is...
rain. says 70% chance
on sunday.

maybe it will rain overnight,
and we'll catch a break.

one can hope...and pray.

things are starting to come together
for the weekend festivities.

ran 3 miles on tuesday...felt good.
today ran another 3 miles, nice and easy.  4-5 miles tmr...
not sure if i'll run anymore before the marathon...if i will be just a couple on sat.
in the process of making as not to forget anything...
i think i'm going to have a separate bag for all my race stuff.
including my breakfast...bagel with pb2, banana, and possibly a yogurt.
found a little tube to keep my salt tabs in...
gonna pin my GU's in my shorts,
and a bag of skittles for a late race pick-me up :)

also praying for no wind...

Sunday, March 13, 2011

time is flying by.
7 days and counting.

thursday i ran.
10 miles at 9:00 pace.
marathon pace run.
it felt good.
the pace didn't feel hard.
the whole time i was thinking...
is this pace do-able for 26.2?
i've run 18 at that pace.
i think it is do-able.

after the run...
my hip was really sore.
i'm really beginning to think that
my injury isn't my QL.

the pt said i could run...
but running seems to make my hip pain worse.
after much research...
and staring at GoogleBody...
i'm thinking its my gluteus medius muscle.

i've continued with the rest/heat/stretch/ice/aleve cycle
and haven't run since thursday.
my hip is considerably better.
hardly any pain at all.
i found a really great stretch and that,
coupled with massaging with a tennis ball against the wall...
 i feel like its on the mend.
i'm taking today and monday off as well.
tuesday, i plan to run 3 easy to test the hip out.

i've been thinking about how i feel in comparison
to my first marathon.
i am much more relaxed...
eventhough i'm dealing with this injury.
last time i couldn't wait to get to taper...
and by the time the marathon came
i was physically and mentally spent.
(over-trained, i think)
this time...mentally...i'm excited and ready to go...
physically, i feel rested...
if my hip would just cooperate during the race.

i'm getting excited for the trip.
just rich and i are going.
the kids are staying with grandma.
this will be a fun little weekend getaway...
we plan to head out on sat afternoon with our friends
and head up to modesto...
hit the expo and have a yummy dinner.
hang out for a while and then hit the hay early...
cuz race time is 7 a.m. sunday morning :)

positive thinking.

Wednesday, March 09, 2011

getting my head on straight...

as the marathon approaches...
it seems that my mind is consumed with the race.
i've been trying not to think about it...
to avoid worrying.

i want to get my goals set in my head
and then...when those negative thoughts creep in...
squash them with positive ones.

i've been going over my training log
and picking out certain runs that were really hard...
and seeing how i pushed through them..
or noticing how much improvement i've made since then...
it's really affirming to my brain.
helps me prove to myself that my goal is possible.

A-break 4 hours
C-finish...even if that means crawling

i printed out the 4 hour pace band to wear for the race.
i have it sitting right next to the computer.
to run 4 hours...that is a 9:09 pace for 26.2 miles.
i can do it!!!
that is my goal.

"Stepping outside the comfort zone is the price I pay to find out how good I can be. If I planned on backing off every time running got difficult I would hang up my shoes and take up knitting."
             -Desiree Davila, marathoner and member of the Hansons-Brooks Original Distance Project

Monday, March 07, 2011


in less than 2 weeks i'll be running my second marathon...

i'm excited...
but honestly... i'm trying not to think about it too much.

i don't want to be the stress case that i was last time.

this time it's going to be different.
i know what to expect...
i know my body better than i did last time...
i have a big group of friends that are running it too...
i want to go out and have a good time :)
and do my best.

this past week i spent recovering. 
after wednesday's visit to the PT...
i've taken his advice to heart and rested...
on friday it was feeling considerably better...
i went for a nice easy 3 mile jog.
it felt great.  i was so happy.

saturday i decided to skip the scheduled tempo run
and just run the miles, but easy...
ran 12mi avg 9:02 pace...
a little stiff after...but just did my recovery routine...
and by the evening was feeling pretty good.
sunday our little modesto group was together for our long run...
i think this was our last double digit run until the marathon...
10.32 miles avg 9:21 pace.
feeling really good. no pain in the hip...just a little sore after.

woke up today...the pain is almost gone...
i am say the least...
that was 25.53 miles in 3 days...and i'm feeling the best i have since i got hurt.
couldn't ask for more.

our team shirts came the other day...
all of us are going to be wearing the fca endurance shirts.

Thursday, March 03, 2011

its my what...

quadratus lumborum...yep...that is what the physical therapist told me yesterday morning.
that is the muscle that has been causing the pain in my hip/side/glute.
the video above gives a bunch of good info on the muscle and some stretches.

but basically that muscle is used to support the trunk.  its not the only muscle, but when the others are tired/fatigued its given more work and can become overloaded.  which is what happened to me....high mileage weekend runs, coupled with speedwork a couple days later.

the muscle connects the illium (hip bone) with the lowest rib.  it is also used when twisting and lifting the legs higher, such as running fast.  so for now...speedwork is out.  he did some ultrasound treatment on the muscle yesterday and massaged it. by the time i left it was feeling TONS better.

i've not run since sunday and i'm going a bit crazy.  the PT said i could run, just take it easy.  he said fast running, where you're picking your knees up higher and using more upper body would not be good until the muscle is healed.

he said to heat/ice it and stretch. the more bloodflow to the area...the faster it will heal.  he also recommended rolling up a towel and placing it just above my hipbone for when i lay on my side...takes the stress off the muscle.  i tried it last night, and really seemed to make a difference. he told me to continue with the aleve for a week, to keep the inflammation down. 

it all seems to be working already, because when i woke up this morning the pain was almost gone.  i'm very excited, and thankful.  i plan on running a few easy miles tmr and then run sat and sunday...but definitely no speedwork, or tempos.  i just need to get some miles in.

i thought about running this morning, but wanted to give myself one more day of rest...i did get up and rode the bike, while rich ran.  felt good to get out and get some exercise.  my diet has gone downhill fast...i need to get that back in check. 

17 more days!  the countdown has begun....

Monday, February 28, 2011

a range of emotions.

Training for the week of 2.21-2.27

this week was full of emotional ups and downs.
the week started out great.
my hip was feeling awesome. the best it had.
tuesday was tempo, so wanted to ease into it. felt great.

wednesday-rest day

thursday-speedwork. 8x1/2 mile repeats were planned at marathon pace equivalent time (3:50)
ended up running... (3:52, 3:47, 3:42, 3:46, 3:43, 3:40, 3:44, 3:45) with a little left at the end :) 7 mi total.

friday-rest day (rode the bike while rich ran his 7 mile long run)

saturday-tempo run- ran about 5.5mi easy/warmup...then 3 mi tempo ( 7:46, 7:39, 7:43) 9mi total.
last mile was hard.  i pushed it.  well...after i was a little bit sore :(
i seriously need a coach to hold me back!  i am my own worst enemy.

sunday-long run 18 miles 2:43:13, avg 9:01 pace. by mile 15 my hip was hurting.  and by the end i was in pain. came home, sat in an ice bath...took motrin...stretched, and had a marble slab waffle cone with vanilla bean ice cream with reese's pnut butter cup.  so divine. made me feel better :)  i deserve it right?  i burned 2100 calories on my run.  but now, i sit here, depressed.  the marathon is 3 weeks away.  i'm taking a few days off and hope that it will get better.  i need to steer clear of all speedwork until after the marathon.   booking the hotel today.  lots of our gang is going.  it is going to be a fun trip :)

41 miles for the week.
355.98 YTD

there you have it. 
emotions from elation to depression.

i'm starting the new week positive with lots of motivation to help myself recover.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

on the mend & new shoes.

saturday i was supposed to run the bakersfield half.
i made the call not to run.
after listening to my friends' advice..
i decided to sit this one out.
to say i was upset, is an understatement.

my goal was to go 1:50
and i really felt i had a great shot at it...
before getting hurt,
but now i will never know...

sunday i ran an easy ten miles (avg. 9:45)
during the run it felt fine,
came back and iced it.
really been spending tons of time stretching/foam rolling.
and i think its finally paying off.
rested on monday.

yesterday was a tempo run at half marathon pace with my group.
so happy to run with them.
it really seemed like forever...
when you're used to seeing these awesome people 5 days a week,
not seeing them for 5 days seemed like eternity  :)

i wasn't sure how i would feel...
so tried not to look at my garmin...
and just run by how i felt.
warm-up felt great...(9:11, 8:38)
and i just went with it. (8:18, 8:19, 8:22, 8:28, 8:18)
so excited!

came home and iced.
by the end of the day it was stiff from sitting in class for so long,
but after some stretching,
it's much better.

decided to take today off as well.
we usually just run easy miles,
but just being safe.
and the rest of the week is full of miles  :)
feeling much better this morning.
i'm gonna start some strengthening exercises today.
i see lots of one legged squats and side leg lifts in my future :)

i also ordered some new kicks...
not sure if shoes had anything to do with my injury
but i got to thinking about them...
and they probably have about 450 miles on them..
so just to be safe..
they are a pretty pink :)

Saturday, February 19, 2011

over the edge.

a wise person once told me...
that when you're training...
you're on the edge of improving
and getting injured.
it's a fine line.
you have to know when to pull back
when you feel you're about to go over the edge.
you really have to know & listen to your body.

since i've been training for modesto
i've really been pushing it...
and pushing it hard.
i have hard time letting up...
and didn't listen to the signals my body was giving me...
and finally went over the edge.

i'm injured.
my hip/glute (piriformis) on the left side is/was in pain. (feels much better now)

last weeks training was tough,
but i was feeling good.
stronger than i had in a long time.
i could really see tons of improvement.

training week of february 7th-february 13th
monday-rest day
tuesday-speedwork 4x1mi  7 mi total  (7:42, 7:36, 7:34, 7:22)
wednesday- 10 miles easy  avg 9:18
thursday- tempo-hospital hill  8.57mi  avg8:34
friday-strength/core 40minutes
saturday- long run 18.42 mi avg 8:47
sunday- easy run 10mi  (noticed left glute a little sore)
weekly total 54.24mi

monday was a rest day, and tuesday was speedwork.
i wasn't sore or anything, so i was pushing hard.
we had 1x2mi @half marathon pace (8:13, 8:16)
2x1mi @10k pace (7:28, 7:37)
1x1/2mi @5k pace (3:29)
that last half mile interval was SO tough.
and i'm sure that is when i went over the edge.

by tuesday night i was in pain.
my glute was throbbing.
starting taking motrin & stretching & icing.
i knew i couldn't run on run on wed.
i was just praying that i recovered quickly.
well...i've been resting since tuesday.
decided not to run the bakersfield half.
i was alot better by yesterday,
but didn't want to risk making it worse.
this morning i can still notice it a little bit,
but it is a million times better.

i'm really bummed i couldn't run.

going to try and run tmr...we'll see how it goes.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011


training for the week of february 7th-february13th

monday-rest day

tuesday-speedwork 4x1mi   7.12mi total (7:42, 7:36, 7:34, 7:22)  these intervals were SO hard. but i did better than i though i could.  surprised myself :)

wednesday-easy run...10.12 miles  9:18 avg.  this run felt great.  got to run in the sun. had a hard time keeping it slow. HR 149

thursday-tempo run-hospital hill...8.57 total  avg 8:34  (9:05, 8:49, 8:27, 7:50, 7:57, 8:28, 8:40, 8:58, 9:00)

friday-strength/core...1 hour

sat-long run...18.42mi   2:43:35  8:47 avg pace...avg HR 159...ran with a big group this morning. used TNT aid stations. felt really strong & sped up at end...with gas in the tank  :)  at one of the aid stations they had some skittles...tried a little handful.  what a pick-me up!!  they put a little hop in my step. i think i found a new race fuel :)

sunday-easy 10 miles avg. 9:14 pace

total 54.24
YTD 297.47

my skittles and i will be running the bakersfield half marathon this saturday....getting excited!

Monday, February 07, 2011

suck it up buttercup.

i have been feeling exhausted.
this new training program is really kicking my butt.
sunday morning...
i showed up to run, but my head was not in it.
i was TIRED, and really was dreading the run.
i was complaining...
the whole run felt hard.
my breathing felt really labored, and my legs were sore.
and it was only 10 miles.
in my mind...i kept thinking about the marathon...
how can i possibly think i can run 26.2?
what am i thinking???
major negative thoughts going on.

i got home from the run feeling even more exhausted,
and probably dehydrated.
i wanted to eat everything in sight.

i had a bunch of water & gatorade to drink,
had some eggs & hashbrowns
and as my head began to clear,
i decided to look at the stats from the run.
i was amazed.
i averaged 9:05 pace for 10 miles with an avg HR 152.
wow! i was in shock.
i couldn't believe my HR was that low...
it felt immensely harder than that.
maybe it was all in my head.
maybe i need to concentrate on having a better mood...
despite being tired & sore...
after all, i don't HAVE to run.
i run because i WANT to.

i need to be positive.
i need to stop making excuses why i can't run fast.
this is the fastest i have ever run in my life,
and yes it will make me tired & sore.
but i will recover and rest...
and get stronger and stronger.
i just need to do it.
i've already made huge improvements
in the month that i've run with my group.
i just need to go with it.
trust that it will work.

s u c k   i t   u p   b u t t e r c u p !

Training: Week of Jan 31-Feb 6
mon: rest day
tues: 3x1mi, 1x1/2mi  6.21mi  avg 8:20  (7:53,7:40,7:42,3:40)
wed: 10 mi easy  avg 9:28
thurs: 8.3mi MarathonPace up hospital hill avg 8:45 (2mi warm, 8:33 ,8:30, 8:41, 8:33, 8:47, 8:32, 1 mi. cool)
fri: rest day
sat: tempo 9mi. avg 8:40  (tempo 8:06, 8:09, 8:12)
sun: long run 10 mi avg 9:05
43.61mi for the week
243.23mi YTD

Saturday, February 05, 2011

two weeks from today...

i will be running the bakersfield half marathon.
i'm not nervous...yet.
just trying to focus on being as prepared as i can be.
and that includes resting when i can.

i spent the majority of this past week
recovering from last sunday's run.
it really kicked my butt...
and i was thrashed until about wednesday.
no kidding...seriously wiped out.
but i still had some good runs...
which tells me i'm getting stronger.

in school news...
i'm still feeling overwhelmed & somewhat uncertain of my teachers.
i did get a 100 percent on my organic chem quiz,
and the highest grade in the class on my stats test (87),
so i guess i shouldn't feel too bad.

spent the afternoon with my amazing daughter.
sharing lunch and some shopping to celebrate her 10th birthday.
very fun.
wish i would have taken some pictures.

here's to a great week!

training week jan. 24th-30th
tues- 2x1mi, 2x1/2mi.  6.14mi avg 8:22pace splits 7:38, 7:29, 3:39, 3:23
wed-easy 10.3 mi  avg 9:30
thurs-tempo 8.28mi  avg 8:36 pace
fri-strength/core + 3 easy miles with rich
sat-tempo 9.05mi  avg 8:42pace   8:02, 7:58, 8:25
sun-16mi. super hilly run out @ millerton  9:03 avg.
52.77mi for the week.