Baby It’s Cold Outside.

baby it's coldLove that Christmas song, by the way.

The warm up didn’t last long.  Grrrr.  Cold, I can handle.  Ice, I can’t.  Back to the treadmill I go until the footing improves a bit.

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Kicking Off Blue Ridge Marathon Training

and she's offWheeee!  I officially started training today for Blue Ridge Marathon.  7 miles and some strides.  The best part: my run was in 50 degree weather.  On December 15th.  In Minnesota. Crazy!

The plan I’m following is a modified Pfitz 18/55.  The modifications?

  • I’m adding an extra easy run day (5 miles easy)
  • I’m also cycling 2 or 3 days a week (I think this will be a good way to strengthen my legs more for the demands of running UP AND DOWN THREE MOUNTAINS, while allowing me to remain injury-free during training)
  • I’m adding a hill workout every week – either in place of a speedy session or mixed in the middle of a general aerobic run.  The type of hill workout will vary and will depend on the weather/ice.  Some of these workouts will be walking uphill on the treadmill as high as it will go.  Based on the reports of the Blue Ridge Marathon, I’ll be walking significant portions of it, so I figure I should practice speed walking uphill.  I also hope to find a treadmill that has a decline and do that a bit.  (The crappy one at my work doesn’t decline).
  • I’m going to try to find hilly routes for all of my long runs.
  • I SWEAR I’m going to really work on my core strength this time.  I always start out strong with this and then it seems so hard to work in 10-15 minutes of core a few times a week.  Why is that??!?
  • Finally, I am going to eat better.  I swear.  :-)

So happy to be training again!

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Laziness is setting in!

I heard a commercial last week for some gimmicky product that promised instant weight loss results with zero effort.  The commercial said, “The number one reason people don’t exercise is lack of time.”  To that, I cry B.S.  I think the number one reason people don’t exercise is laziness (i.e. lack of motivation).  You can make time for the things that you find important.

This week I found it really hard to motivate myself to get off my butt and exercise.  My excuses: It’s a holiday weekend.  It’s too cold.  Sleeping in sounds so much better.  Making (and eating) rolo cookies seems more important. I’ll do it tomorrow. Blah. Blah. Blah.

Must have a better week next week!

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The Greatest of Virtues

thankful heart

This week as we celebrate Thanksgiving, I am filled with SO much gratitude and thankfulness for all that I have.  So much to celebrate! :-)

Happy Thanksgiving everyone!

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It’s Been Awhile!

Slowly but surely I’m getting back into running shape.  Really slowly.  After three weeks off after Twin Cities, I’m easing back into running (and cycling on the trainer).  The arctic blast and early snow that we got last week make it more difficult to get out to run.  Thank goodness for warm weather weekend escapes!

IMG_3767Hiking in mountains of Palm Springs

IMG_3834Selfie with a Joshua Tree at Joshua Tree National Park 

I feel SO lucky and thankful.  Life is good. :-)

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Because Just Any Old Marathon Isn’t Challenging Enough . . .

I registered for “America’s Toughest Road Marathon”.

Seriously.

I’m officially registered for The Blue Ridge Marathon in Roanke, Virginia on April 18, 2015.

What makes it so tough?

  • 7,430 feet of elevation change during the 26.2 miles.
  • Running up and down THREE MOUNTAINS during the 26.2 miles.
  • Running downhill.  That sounds easy, in theory.  But it hurts.

blue ridge elevation

Those are MOUNTAINS in that course profile.

This marathon has also received 5 star reviews from Marathonguide.com and has been added to many an article about “bucket list” marathons.  It’s been billed one of the most gorgeous marathons.  It’s been put to the test by Competitor Magazine.

blue ridge

An excerpt from a blog of a runner  (“Let It Ache”) who ran it last year:

Then we make a turn out of town, then up this hill.  The hill which started at mile two didn’t end until mile 7 – fucking unreal.  4 miles into this bitch, I am thinking you can’t be serious as I am keeping a around a 10 minute mile.  Mile 6 approaches and the legs are feeling it as we continue to go up and we hit this 180 turn and all I see is a road with a 30% incline, just sick…

Sounds fun, huh? :-)

So WHY in the world did I register for this marathon?

  • I wanted a marathon where I wouldn’t be tempted to race.  I’m getting sick of the training that goes with BQ attempts and being dissapointed when I don’t hit my BQ time. If I put in months of training, I don’t want to walk away from the marathon feeling disappointed.
  • I wanted a marathon in April so that I can take time off after it and be back running by mid-May.
  • I wanted to travel somewhere cool, so that even if the marathon ends up sucking, the travel will be an experience.
  • I wanted a new training challenge.  Something that would force me to train differently than I’ve done before.  I am a decent up hill runner.  But I do not know how to run downhill.  So this will challenge me.  I’ve been reading up on hill training and running and have lots of training ideas.  I am excited because in addition to the running and hill training itself, training for this will force me to focus on my core, my hips and my glutes.  All areas where I need focus and help.
  • And the biggest reason:  I wanted to do something that challenges me in a way that scares me.  Life is about doing things that challenge and scare you. :-) And believe me, the hills (up AND down) in this marathon scare me.

So there you have it.  Marathon #14 is on the schedule.  :-)

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