Chicago Marathon Training: Week 7 Recap

Whew!! This was a busy week indeed!

If you read Friday’s post, then you know last week was all about birthday party planning for this boy:

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His birthday was officially Thursday but we celebrated on Saturday–more on this later 😀

As far as workouts are concerned, I was very grateful this was a scale back week as I needed it. I even cut some of the runs shorter than what was on the schedule. (shh!!!)

I usually get on the bike on Mondays but one of my buddies was looking for a running partner for an easy 6 miler. I told her it’d have to be easy since I had run 15 miles the day before.

We chatted the entire way and even though the pace was faster than my “easy”, it didn’t feel difficult and the time flew by.

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Tuesday morning, I made up my missed bike workout from the day before and got in 45 minutes/10 miles.

In the evening, all of my running friends were busy or had run earlier so I found myself heading over to the local running store solo. I knew there would be others I’d recognize so I wasn’t worried about anything. In fact, I decided since I was by myself, I’d try and run a fast 5k to test out the legs. I knew I wouldn’t get a completely accurate estimate of a 5k race (one, it wasn’t an actual race; two, I had run 15 miles two days before and 6 one day before; and three, it was 100+ degrees out) but I really wanted to gauge where I was for that distance and went for it.

I was running late so when I got to the store, everyone was already getting started. I caught up to the pack and then saw one my friends pushing her daughter (she always does on this run). I decided to keep her in my sights for as long as I could. She’s a total badass and regularly maintains an 8ish average while pushing her stroller! So that was my plan–just keep her in sight. The first mile went by relatively smooth and I felt great at 8:46. I was passing people (she was passing people!) and while I knew I could probably catch up to her, I wanted to keep pace. I was getting closer though and my mile 2 beeped at 8:23. It was a little after mile 2 that I was now right behind her but I knew that she’d finish the last mile strong and I was already struggling a bit. Last mile, 8:22. I’m totally counting that negative split 🙂

This girl though. Total B.A. She's training for an Ironman 70.3.

This girl though. Total B.A. She’s training for an Ironman 70.3.

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Wednesday was speedwork day and I was back at the track for some Yassos. I’m a weird one who really likes doing this drill. For those unfamiliar with Yasso 800s, his theory is that you run an 800 (two times around the track) at the pace you hope to finish your marathon. If you could build up to 10 reps, you should be able to pull off that time or darn close. The best way I’ve seen to do this is:

Between each 800, jog for the same amount it took you to complete a repeat. I like to jog/walk a 400.

Between each 800, jog for the same amount it took you to complete a repeat. I like to jog/walk a 400. For more info, check out this.

It was tough for me that day to hit my marks because again, I was running late and got in only a 400 warm up and had to get going. The first half of my workout I missed my pace goal (which is around 4:00-4:05–NOT my marathon goal time but that’s where I feel the 800s are challenging but not overly difficult/easy).

4:09, 4:10, 4:09

I readjusted and the second half of the workout:

3:59, 4:02, 3:59

It made me feel pretty good that I was able to end the workout better than the beginning.

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It had been four days of hard running that by the time Thursday rolled around, I found myself clicking the snooze button for the 5 at 5 alarm I’d set. I needed/wanted the rest. Plus, it was my son’s official birthday and doing this was much more fun:

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Fridays are my typical rest days and while I didn’t run, I was busy party planning for my little guy’s party the next day.

I had 10 miles scheduled for my long run Saturday morning and I woke up at 3:30 for a 4 a.m. start time. (Seriously, who am I?)

I ran 4 with some friends and then made it back to meet up with the 5 a.m. starters for another 6. I picked up the pace towards the end on the second go around and finished with the last two miles at 9:30 and 9:07. I’ve been liking finishing the long run strong and getting the legs moving while they’re tired.

The temp at 4 a.m.

The temp at 4 a.m.

Later that afternoon, it was party time!!! Several of my friends joked how I should have worn a Fitbit or something to track my steps. I was a busy mom that day!!!

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piñata!!

piñata!!

Overall, it was a great week with less mileage than usual (22.12) but I was happy I got some good workouts done.

How was *your* week? Are you a chocolate cake fan? Have a great Monday, amigos! ❤ , helly

–Do you ever test out your 5k pace on your own? 

–Are you a fan of Yasso 800s?

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Healthy Kids Running Series: Race #2 Recap

Progress!!!

Before I recap, I have to show you this pic from race #1–(race pics are free!! a def plus to this race)

That face. <3

That face. ❤

So last time, if you recall, my daughter was all about it, talking and announcing how she was going to run fast like mommy only to get stage fright when it was go time. (recap here)

Afterward, she said she wanted a do over and I talked to her about how there was only one chance, that she’d have to wait for next Sunday to go again. I took the opportunity to show her pics from that day’s race and explain how the kids in the pictures were running by themselves, without their mommies. She seemed to understand how a race was meant to be run alone. I asked her, “Do you think you can run by yourself?” and she was very certain that she could.

Throughout the week she would say to my husband and I, “I run by myself!” and we’d say, “Yeah, you can do it!”

We practiced too. I’d stand on one end of the hallway and my husband at the other. We’d ask, “Do you think you can run by yourself to daddy?”

“Yeah!!”

On Sunday, we picked out the running outfit. It was all about the purple and she was very adamant about wanting big bow. She also wanted to wear shorts like mommy so she wore the same pink shorts as last time.

We arrived at the race right before the start time. The 3 p.m. start was a hot one so we didn’t want to get there early and stand around in 93 degree weather.

My husband and I walked our daughter to the finish line to show her where she was running to. We practiced running through the line and she loved it. Then it was time to gather around the start. Daddy kissed her good luck and told her he’d be waiting.

The 2-3 year old boys went first and I pointed out again how they were running without their mommies. She nodded, “I run by myself!”

Then it was her turn. The race director said the instructions to the runners and at Go! the runners took off. My daughter started running but then looked back to see where I was and yelled, “Mommy, run!” so I started running behind her. She kept turning back to make sure I was there but yup, she was doing it. Running all by herself. 😀

flying.

flying.

my little runner

my little runner

This race was most definitely a success. Considering last time she wouldn’t even think about standing let alone running, to now going the entire way and crossing the finish line–we are very happy with how the race went 😀

And I can tell she likes it too; she laughed and had a huge smile the entire way–that alone makes me the happiest mom in the world. ❤

My daughter takes a break from racing next weekend so you’ll have to anxiously wait two weeks for her next race update 🙂 She turns three on Thursday and is having her big bash on Saturday!

–Do you train for all races or just particular races?

–Besides following a training plan, how else do you prepare for a race?

–Do you smile while you run? : )

Healthy Kids Running Series: Race #1 Recap

Sorry I’ve been MIA–It seems I needed a week off from my week off. Two weeks ago was my Spring Break and I enjoyed it so much I needed a recovery week lol!

Anyway, I’m alive 😀

Before I recount any running I’ve been doing, I first want to tell you about someone else who has been running.

MY DAUGHTER ❤

Yep, I signed her up for a local Healthy Kids Running Series that consist of 5 races in the span of 6 weeks (we get Easter weekend off). It’s a 50 yard dasher that’s organized by age groups so my daughter is in the 2-3 year olds  (seriously though, how cute is that?). The race is also separated by gender.

I wasn’t sure what approach to take: to hype the race and get her excited or downplay it like it was no big deal. I decided on the former as I didn’t want her to feel pressured or like this was a huge deal and get her nervous.

On Saturday night, I asked her if she wanted to run the next day and she squealed with delight! So of course we went straight to the closet to choose an outfit.

Pink everything <3

Pink everything ❤

I didn’t mentioned anything about an actual race though. Just kinda kept it low key.

I ran on Sunday morning with my husband (I want to tell you all about this soon!) and when I came home, my daughter asked me her usual, “Mommy all done run?” and I said, “Yep, now it’s your turn!”

Her eyes opened wide as she remembered and she squealed, “YES!!! I run like mommy!!”

My heart soared.

I honestly wasn’t sure what to expect from her as she always gets excited about mommy running but she was seriously spazzing about her doing the running. I wanted to share and join in on the excitement but was nervous about making it into too big of a deal. In retrospect, I think I should have prepared her a little more.

pumped.

pumped.

We arrived at the race location just in time (3 p.m. which is my only major complaint about this series. It’s Phoenix. It’s hot. It was already 90 degrees at 3). Anyway, there were a lot more people/kids than I expected and then after a few minutes of waiting, organizers began grouping kids by age group.

My daughter’s group went first. She was still super pumped at this point as we walked towards the start line. She kept repeating, “I run fast! I run fast!” I knelt down next to her to point her in dad’s direction–who was at the finish line.

I love this picture so much.

Giving her the pep talk—looking fierce. (I love this picture so much.)

After our chat, I started to say my good byes but as soon as she realized that mommy wasn’t running with her, my daughter was not having any of it. Not. At. All.

I tried telling her mommy would run next to her on the sidelines but after the boys had gone and she saw they were solo, she refused to move an inch.

The whistle blew for the girls to go and they were off. Except my daughter. Two girls stumbled over each other and fell and when my daughter saw that, it was over for real.

In tears, she threw herself in my arms and said she wasn’t going. She didn’t want to.

I consoled her and told her it was okay, that we were going to do it together this time. So we did.

Running to the finish line

We crossed the finish line hearing dad and grandparents cheering loudly and it was then that she lifted her head up and smiled.

She turned to me and said, “Mommy, I ready!”

All I could do was laugh and tell her, “You’ll do it again next time!”

Of course I would’ve liked for her to have run it by herself, but for her first time, her first race, I felt it was a success. She experienced the race atmosphere, which is definitely daunting at any age, and I know that as she acclimates, it’ll become a more familiar environment.

I was so proud of her. I was so proud that at the end she wanted to go back for a do over. Just like mommy and the Phoenix Marathon, we’ll get it next time! We sure will! 🙂

–Were you involved in any athletics when you were young? What was your first sport experience?

–Do you get pre-race jitters?