Monday, January 31, 2011

Racing at home

Ran 4 miles outside today, felt OK but I cannot wait to get my new shoes!  Since the half marathon I get pain under my foot, I think it is my current shoes.  Soon we will see if I am right.

In June I will be going HOME!!!!!
Home is Quebec in case you did not know yet.  My favorite place ever.

June 4th is my  25th High School reunion and there is NO WAY I am missing this.  I have not been back home in over 2 1/2 years.  This is the longest I have gone without going home.  Finally the price of the tickets are going down ..from 860 to 550.  I found a 10k race that I could do while I am there. 

Only problem is that it is the day after the reunion.  I still want to do it.  I have never raced in Quebec yet.  This will be the 58th year they have that race and the course is in a beautiful part of the city, running by this:

The Montmorency Falls: The falls, at 275 ft high  and 150 feet wide are the highest in the province of Quebec and 98 ft higher than Niagara Falls.

Free Geography lesson of the day over.

Now I want to convince a few of my classmates to join me for the race.  That won't be easy.  They will have an open bar at the reunion.  I cannot drink so I don't care about that part!

To be continued...

Now I must decide on a training plan for my next race: a 10k.  It is in 4 weeks, I am going to have to modify one I think because training for next half starts next Monday.
Training for this week

MON: 4 miles
TUE: 3 miles tempo at gym
WED:  4 miles
THU: 3 miles + strength
FRI: rest
SAT: 2 easy miles + 30 min elliptical @ gym
SUN: 5 miles
TOTAL: 21 miles


Sunday, January 30, 2011

Shoe finder part 2

My mission for the weekend was to find out what kind of running shoes I should wear.  Got the answer to that yesterday: stability shoes.  At the store I went to they only had Saucony, Brooks, Asics and Adidas.  I left with good info and no shoes.  I decided to look online and do more research on the other brands and also look for better prices.

I got a list of models from Mizuno and Nike and went to Dick's Sporting Goods to try as many as I can find there.  I also got a good tip from Chris K who told me about this great blog runblogger where the guy tests lots of shoes.  Thanks Chris.  On that website I found this place running warehouse.

So I tried several pairs of shoes, found one that is great for me I think, hard to know for sure without REALLY running with them for a while but they feel good.  Came back home and went to look on the running warehouse website and there they were:  on SALE! At the store they were $90 and online $45!!!!!!!! Free 1 day shipping and free return, cannot beat that.

So Tuesday these Mizuno should arrive at my door

and on Wednesday we will have a date for a few miles, let's hope we get along great!  I had not planned to go to the store again today and it took me an eternity to try all the shoes.  That included doing a little run in the store looking like a fool (of course I saw 2 families of kids I coached before!).  Once I was done it started to rain and time had run out.  We had a babysitter coming  at 1 pm to go catch a movie so I skipped my run but it is worth it if those shoes are THE ONES.

Went to see The Company Men and I highly recommend it.  It was excellent and all the actors are great in it.

Tuesday I get the results of my scan and once I know all is OK,  I will register for OC Half Marathon and Disneyland Half Marathon!  

Saturday, January 29, 2011

Shoe finder

Mission accomplished!
I found a running store about 20 minutes drive from my house.
They were super nice.
I brought my running shoes to do the running test.
They put me on the treadmill.
Results: I need "stability" shoes. 
Bad news: I have cushioned shoes.

They made me try several pairs of shoes and run with them.  I could tell the difference right away. 

It comes down to:
Adidas supernova sequence 3
Asics Gel 2150

Got some new running socks and plain GU and decided to wait for the shoes and shop online first and read some reviews even though I should not do that and just go with what feels best.

Ran 4 miles this morning!

OC Half Marathon is a go I think..anyone reading this ran that one before?

Friday, January 28, 2011

The winner is moi

Do you know what the PUKIE AWARD is?  If you are a followers of Big Daddy Diesel you know what I am talking about.  If you have no clue,  then head over to his blog right now!

This is what he says : "If you don't puke or pass out you could have gone harder"
I actually agree with him 100%.

So I won this week's Pukie Award!  This is for my "performance"  last Sunday at the Carlsbad Half Marathon.  This is what happened seconds after I crossed the finish line.  I want to thank Bill for making sure to take a picture of my glorious moment.  My first minutes as a half marathoner, very glamorous as you can see.  But I can say without a doubt that I could not have gone harder that day.  That is a good feeling (now more then when that picture was taken!).

Thank you Big  Daddy Diesel for the award! You made my day!!!  Is it crazy to be happy about an award about puking?!!
I decided I want to run my next Half Marathon sooner then in September when the Disney race is.  I am anxious to try that again and to do better.  My next race is February 27th and that is a 10k.  I would like to keep my mileage where it is now.  I want to run the OC Half Marathon on May 1st!  The course looks great, again by the Pacific Ocean.  The only issue I have is they require runners to pick up packets Friday or Saturday and the race is Sunday.  I am about 45-50 minutes away and I don't want to drive there twice in 2 days.  They offer the option to mail the bib and timing chip for $25 (I think it should come in a golden box for that price). I also have to run this plan by Bill...I hope he will not say I am crazy like the rest of my family.   I sent him the link in an response yet, that was over 3 hours ago...should I be worried?!!
Tomorrow back at regular training, I feel rested 100%.  I went to the gym only twice this week, one biking workout and a 3.25 miles run yesterday.  That is enough rest, loosing my mind over here.

Thursday, January 27, 2011

3 Things Thursday

1. Today I ran for the first time since my Half Marathon.  3.25 easy miles on the treadmill.
Felt pretty good, no pain in the legs, a little bit at the ball of  my foot.   I am thinking I may need different shoes.  I don't live in a town of runners.  There's no running store here, just  stores like Dicks and Sport Authority where all they want is sell you a pair of shoes, the higher the price the better for them.  I must find a store where they can really tell me what shoes would be good for me.  That is my mission for the weekend.

2.  My basketball team is driving me crazy.  I got 9 boys aged 6-7.  The truth is: we suck.  I started coaching when I was 18 so long time ago and I can count on one hand the number of teams I had that sucked.  I am not going to lie, I don't like it.  The problem is that those little fellas don't care that they suck.  Well maybe 2 of them do care, Will cuz he has my DNA and another one who is really a football player.  The rest well they don't care.  I need to lower my expectations and remember they need to have fun and they are only 6-7 yrs old.

3.  I have decided to wait until I get the results of my scan before I pay for the Disney Half Marathon.  If the tumor has grown I will need to take care of it.  I will know Tuesday.  If I cannot do that one, I still have plan B, the Rock n Roll LA Half Marathon.  I want to see if I find one in May,  that would give me enough time to train between now and then but May can be really hot here (I HATE the heat). 
And I am still not over Shirtless Guy/Magnum PI look-a-like ruining some of MY race pictures!!

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

More about the Half Marathon and the Oscars!

Ultrasound today, of course they did not tell me anything and I have to wait until next week to find out the results.  Will try not to think about it too much.  My legs are MUCH better. I am thinking of going for 2-3 miles on the treadmill tomorrow.
I LOVE movies and the Oscar race is on!
These are my predictions:

Best Movie: The King's Speech.
Best Actor: Colin Firth
Best Actress: Natalie Portman
Best supp Actor: Christian Bale
Best Supp Actress: Amy Adams

Well the official pictures are in and they came with a VIDEO!
This is so cool! I have never been to a race where they film the runners!
So when I got the email last night and I saw the video of me crossing the line I could not resist.  I bought the pictures and the video, that was all in one package.  This was my 13th race and I had bought picture once before that, those are so expensive and Bill usually snaps a couple of good shots so I cannot justify spending money on more pictures.  But this time it is special and he said that I should get them so I did. 

Here's me crossing the finish line on the left the one who raises her arm up!
(Followed by guy with no shirt what is up with that guys who read my blog? Do you go shirtless at races?)

And more pictures of  the race.

The winners:

The non winner:

I cropped shirtless guy out of this picture as much as I could

This is the original one

Tuesday, January 25, 2011


My legs called and they want a divorce.  I said calm down it will pass.
OK so day 2 post half marathon, I am feeling it.  I wish my house did not have stairs.  It hurts to poor quads...

I did go to the gym today.  No running, just bike for 40 minutes.  That did not hurt at all.
Tomorrow I cannot run either it is my 6 mos screening to see if the tumor I have on my kidney has grown.   I know I have it since July of 2009 (2009 was NOT my year).  It has not grown since then so fingers crossed it will be the same this time.  I usually don't think about it too much except when the 6 mos is up and I have to have the ultrasound then of course that is all I can think about.  Unfortunately they cannot do a biopsy on these kind of tumors so we don't know what kind it is.  The fact that it has not grown is a good sign

Did you see I modified the name of my blog?

The next Half Marathon will be The Disneyland Half Marathon on Labor day weekend

It was between this one and the Rock and Roll Los Angeles Half Marathon in October . 
How can I not do Disneyland though?  The course goes in both park and at Angel Stadium and it is DISNEYLAND!  Last year I ran the 5k race and I remember wishing I was ready for the big race.  My kids will do the kids race on the Saturday and we will stay there for my race on Sunday.  Like everything Disney it is not cheap:  $125 well $133.63 once Active adds their lovely processing fee. 

One thing I learned from my first training experience is that 1 double digit run is not enough to get ready for the half marathon.  I am not sure if I will use the same plan but if I do, I will add one more 10-12 miler. 

Monday, January 24, 2011

Carlsbad HALF MARATHON Race Recap

Before I start with my recap I want to say a couple things.

First thank you all for your comments yesterday, you made me feel really special and coming from people who know what it is to run half and full marathons it means a lot to me.

I have always admire marathoners, ever since I am a little girl.  My uncle used to run marathons. Everyone in our really large family (I am grand kid #49) thought he was nuts except for me.

Now that I did a half marathon, I have to say to all of you people who run half and FULL marathons, those of you who are super fast, the triathletes:  
I admire all of you even MORE.


I apologize this recap will have too many words and way too many pictures with me in them.

This was my very first Half Marathon.
Carlsbad is about 1h45 drive from where I live so we had decided to go there Saturday and spend the night.  But first I had to do a little bit of this:

 With my favorite player!

Game ended at 2 pm and we hit the road right away to get to the Expo before 5pm.  We hit some traffic, of course this is Southern California there WILL BE TRAFFIC always, and got there at 4 pm.  The Expo was great, lots of vendors, everybody was super nice.  I got my bib and race shirt.  They gave a cool Technical long sleeve shirt:

After the Expo we went to drive the course.  I saw that it was not 100% flat like they said it would be.   There were some hills there.  The longest part of the course is by the ocean, so beautiful, hard to ask for anything better then that.  After that we went to our hotel.  Wow what a nice place: Seapoint Resort.  My father in law took care of the reservation using his time share points and we saved a lot of $ and were able to stay in a condo unit with 2 bedrooms!  The resort was by the ocean and along the course for the marathon and the half marathon.  This was perfect!  Here are some pics from the resort:

View from balcony when we arrived.

My boys live a really hard life: Watching Despicable Me with cookies and milk in bed.

I wanted to go to bed early but with the kids and taking care of their dinner and all they would need for race day it did not happen as early as I wanted.  I had my dinner, not the typical high carbs and calories pre long race dinner most should have but I did the best I could.  I did not want to have any GI trouble the next day.

I know you all wish you could eat this every day: small bowl of pasta, salad and pistachios.

Took forever to fall asleep, nerves were winning the battle there for a while.  Got up at 4:45 am to have coffee and breakfast in the pitch dark while the rest of the family was still sleeping.  Got dressed, was not sure what to wear, it was pretty cold 4 Celsius.  Got the crew up and left the hotel around 6:10 am.  The start was at 7:30, I was in wave 5.  Bill dropped me and I went to look for the porta potty, lines everywhere...10000 runners that is a lot of people!  Somehow I got lucky and I found Bill and the boys before the start!

It was cold,  people were freezing.

Made my way to my wave.  Lots of people in wave 5, they said the largest of all 7, lots of 1st timers also.  Took about 15 minutes for us to be allowed to the starting line.  I was nervous and happy, could not believe this day was here.  I was standing at the starting line of a Half Marathon!  Finally we went down to the start and I saw Bill and the boys!

Pac Man was there!

Final Goodbye to the boys!

The first few miles went by really fast.  I felt good, I was going a little faster then I should.  The first hill came at miles 2.  A lot of people stopped to walk there and that created some commotion and several crashes...I avoided all of that by staying to the side.  At mile 4 we were supposed to have GU.  No GU.  I did not need or want it but a lot of runners were counting on it and were not happy.  Later we found out that the marathoners who started at 6 am took all the GU that was available.  Lesson learned from this: Must carry your own stuff.  At mile 4 I started taking small sips of water at the stations.  The volunteers were THE BEST.  All super encouraging and smiling and lots of them at each station.  All along the course I have to say the crowd was fantastic.  There were a lot of bands also.  That plus the view of the ocean it was perfect. 

Bill took these from around mile 6 and 9 (both around same spot; 9 is after the turn around) the runners are around 4.5 miles down there so you can see we went up a bit!

At mile 5 I wished I had wear a different top.  It got warmer.  Mile 6 I saw my boys for the first time.  I was SO HAPPY!

 This was mile 6 water station where Chris K and the Toga's group was..sadly I did not see him in all his glory but you can see a picture of him here.

I had given Bill some plain GU and water, I took a little bit of GU,  kissed the boys and continued running.  So far so good.  I worried that maybe I was going too the 10k mark I was about a minute slower then my best 10k race time.  I knew I'd pay for it later and I did.  After the turnaround I saw my family again I had done more then half the distance by then and I was still smiling.

About 4 more miles to go

At mile 10 I started hurting on the ball of my left foot.  I thought it was a blister.  I figure nothing I can do,  just keep going.  Never had that pain before.  I also started getting stomach pain not too bad but still I could have done without it.  I did have to take a couple of walking breaks because of it.  I was looking for a porta potty, when I finally saw one, the line was huge and I was told people were sick in 2 of the 3.  No thank you, I will pass.  I saw 2 girls pulling out at mile 10.  They did not look upset or hurt.  I also saw at least 4 people getting sick on the sidewalk.  My foot was hurting more and I had fire under it.  I was also really thirsty, last couple stations had run out of cups...NOT GOOD.

Mile 11...Hello #^$& WALLNot nice to meet youGo away.  I thought I was going to pass out.  I did not.  I was very dizzy.  I could tell I was not walking straight. Someone asked if I was OK, I remember that.  I stopped, not walked, stopped for a minute.  I decided to go again...and take it slow.   Mile 12 I took water.  Felt a little better and I told myself : Do not walk crossing the finish line: RUN!  I passed a guy who was down getting help from the so sad at freaking mile 12.

I ran the last mile, it was not fast but it was running!
I was smiling at the end.  I could only see the finish line, I did not see my boys or Bill even though they were there.  I was very tired.

And then this happened:

I almost collapsed after crossing the finish line, this nice man holding me on the right with the hat took care of me.  I had dry heaves.  Not fun. The woman on the left with the winter hat wanted to take me to the medical tent but I said I would be OK.  The man helped me walk to get my medal, he was an angel.  I can say without a doubt that I gave everything I had.  The tank was empty.  I was tired and dehydrated. 

I reunited with Bill and the boys who saw all this from the other side of the fence.  I scared Bill for a minute I think.  When I saw them it hit me, I had done it! I had ran a Half Marathon and I burst into poor kids did not know what to think because they were so happy to see me...we explained those were good tears...still not sure they get it..!

 I did it!!!!

The walk to get back to the car was HELL.  My legs were cramping, my feet were on fire.  I was a mess.  A PROUD HAPPY MESS.

This is it my friends.  I learned a lot from mistakes I made.

- I need to find a better way to fuel for next time and to always bring my own.
- No more long sleeves for a long race like this.
- Drink MORE.
- Start slower.
- Eat more for breakfast.

There will be a next time.

When I started this blog  my goals were to run a half marathon, finish it alive and say I want to do it again.   I also wanted to be under 2:45.
I did all that and I am happy.

Would I like a faster time? Hell yeah! Don't we all!!!!
Next time it will be faster I know I can do better.

Yes the time does mean something to me like it does to most of us who put our running shoes at the starting line of a race.  This race was about more then time, it was about showing myself and my kids what I can do with this 42 yrs young body.  That same body who a year ago was 70 lbs heavier and barely able to run 3 miles without walking. 

It was hard and I felt like hell at the end.

I got this:

and I get to wear this:

Thank you for reading this and for all the support and advices you have given me!