Thursday, December 30, 2010

A Look Ahead to 2011

The saying "What a difference a year makes!" certainly is true for me. Recently I was reflecting back to the November 2009 Jingle Bell Run and remembered that I had to walk part of it because I was so out of shape. The last two weekends I ran 90 min and 75 min and tomorrow I will do at least 90 min. Last year if you had asked me if I could run 90 min, I would have thought you were crazy. Now, it may not be a piece of cake, but I can do it without stopping. My in-laws live in Alexandria Bay during the summer and I can recall watching their neighbor across the street going out for a 7 mile run in preparation for the Boilermaker. At the time I thought he was crazy for both running 7 miles and for running the Boilermaker. Today, I can run 7 miles myself and I plan to run the Boilermaker this summer. Funny how things change.

So, speaking of the Boilermaker, I am ready to release my race plan for 2011. Drumroll please...

Sunday, January 23, 1:00 PM, Cazenovia: Chilly Chili 5K
Can't go wrong when there is a chili cookoff at the finish line

Saturday, February 12, 10:00 AM, Onondaga Lake Park: Cupid's Chase 5K
Nothing terribly special about this race, just something to break up the winter

Saturday, March 5, 10:00 AM, Burnet Park: Tipperary Hill Shamrock Run 4 miles
I'm Irish and you run past all the bars in the Tipperary Hill neighborhood, need I say more?

Sunday, March 20, Time TBD, North Area YMCA: Indoor Triathlon
This will be a good way to see how I'm doing during the off-season in each discipline

May ?, Time TBD, Du at the Lakes:
My first Du of RunBikeRun

Sunday, May 1, : Mountain Goat Run 10 mile
This is another race I thought I would never do. I just hope it's not as hot as last year's was.

Saturday, June 11, 8:30 AM, Green Lakes State Park: Green Lakes Sprint Triathlon
The first of three triathlons planned for this year

Sunday, July 10, Time?, Utica, NY: The Boilermaker 15K
This is the race I thought was crazy and now I want to do it...where's the straight-jacket?

Sunday, August 7, 7:00 AM, Oneida Shores Park: Iron Girl Sprint Triathlon
A return to better my time from last year...I hope!

Sunday, August 28...I think!, 9:00 AM, Clayton, NY: River Rat Triathlon
2010 was the inagural race and I probably could have done it after Iron Girl. Mentally I just wasn't preparing for another triathlon

Right now, I think this is as far ahead as I'm going to plan. I ran 7 races this fall and I'm probably going to try to do most of them again in hopes that I will improve my time. But, time will tell if I want to do them again or if I can as long as I stay injury free.

The only other race I might do is a half marathon in October. There is an inagural race that I would like to participate in called the Empire State Full and Half Marathon. I am hoping to work behind the scenes on this race, so I'm not sure if I will be able to compete. If not, then a half marathon is definitely going to be on my race list for 2012, but that is way too far away to start thinking about.

So, that's it for now. Hope I will see some of you at these races so we can share our stories.


Sunday, December 19, 2010

An Interesting Day in the Life of This Runner

Well, I thought my next post was going to be a list of next years race plan, but that will have to wait. Yesterday was an interesting day in my running life, so I figured I better write about it.

Major Run!
As most of you know, I belong to the Kevin Collins running group through the YMCA and on Saturday's we do our long run. The first week, which was 10 weeks ago, we had to run 15-30 minutes. I chose the 30 minutes because A) I had already been running 30 minutes pretty consistently and B) there was no way I was going to drive 25 minutes to Green Lakes State Park, run only 15 minutes, then drive 25 minutes home. So, every other week, our long run would increase by 15 minutes. Therefore, on weeks 3 & 4 we had to run 30-45 minutes, weeks 5 & 6 we had to run 45-60 minutes, and so on.

Yesterday was week 10 and we had to run 75-90 minutes. Up until yesterday, the longest I had ever run at one time was 67 minutes at the Thanksgiving Day Turkey Trot 10K. Last week I ran 60 minutes in the morning then ran another 32 minutes at the It's a Wonderful Run 5K, so that was the most I had run in one day, but not all at the same time. Yesterday was definitely going to be interesting.

I arrived at the park, got my layers on in the car, and headed over to the group. I didn't recognize anyone. Great! I have to do this alone?!?! Luckily, Kevin joined me for the first 30 minutes or so. On previous Green Lakes runs we headed out on the Erie Canal Tow Path, but I was told that the snow makes it impossible to run on. So, we ran "the bowl" which is basically up a hill and back down it, then up another hill and back down it. Hills? Great! I love them! (Not quite!)

Anyway, as we came back to the parking lot, Kevin had me go ahead because someone I knew was up ahead and I wanted to catch up with her. I ran the next 40 minutes or so with her and three other people, then her time ended. Two of the women in that group finished my run with me. I was doing great until about the last 10 minutes or so. I had bought the pair of running shoes I was wearing back in April or May. I knew I was overdue to get a new pair because they say to get a new pair every 300 miles or so. I have no idea how many miles were on them, but I knew it was more than 300 miles. And recently I could feel that I was due. The outside of my left foot has been bugging me on and off for the last couple weeks. It doesn't hurt when I run, but once in awhile when I'm sitting it will ache a little. During the last 10 minutes yesterday I got a sharp pain in the arch of my left foot. So, I decided right then and there that I was going to Fleet Feet on the way home.

So, to finish up my run story, I ran for a total of 90 minutes for a distance of 7.23 miles. It was actually a little more because my Garmin took awhile to locate the satellites and I didn't start my stop watch for a couple minutes or so into the run. Today as I write this, my legs are aching...BAD! But, its a good ache!

New Shoes!
Since I was on the East side of town, I thought it would be a good idea to stop at Fleet Feet on my way home. They hadn't been open long, so it wasn't busy and I got someone to wait on me right away. They brought out 3 pairs of running shoes including the updated version of my old shoes. They all felt pretty good, but my thought was that I had good results with my old shoes, so I would go with the updated ones.

During the Green Lakes run, I was very nervous about all the hard packed snow. So, while I was at Fleet Feet, I also picked up a pair of Yak Trax. Santa doesn't know it yet, but they will be in my stocking Christmas morning. (Don't tell Santa, but actually, the empty box will be there because I will be using them this week...shhh!)

I'm a little sad to retire my old shoes because I've done a lot in them. My first triathlon, my first 10K, my current 5K PR, my longest run ever.

They won't be retired completely, just worn to Wegman's instead of training. For now, I've got to look ahead to even more with my new shoes.


Thursday, December 16, 2010

It's a Wonderful Run 5K Race Report

Last Saturday I finished up my 2011 race season. It was a pretty short season seeing that I only started it in August. Next week I'll write about my full 2011 race season. But, for now, I'll wrap up what has been an interesting year of racing.

On Saturday I ran the "It's a Wonderful Run" 5K in Seneca Falls. I figured it would be a nice way to get some holiday spirit while being active at the same time.

I started Saturday morning by running at Onondaga Lake Park with the Kevin Collins run group. Coach Kelly wasn't crazy about me running, but out of the 8 previous weeks, I had missed 4 of them. I was longing to run with friends and didn't want to do a run alone. So we agreed that I would do 60 min of my run in the morning and finish my long run with the 5K. So, I headed to the park at 7:00 AM and ran with my friend Mary D. and another woman I just met that day, but now her name escapes me. At the end of the 60 min we ran about 5.5 miles.

At 2:00 I met my friends Erin and Sarah at the Y to car pool to Seneca Falls. I definitely didn't want to drive and run out there by myself, so it was great to have the two of them for company.

We arrived at the Hotel Clarence and picked up our race packet. One of the unique things about this race is that it was going to be featured on MTV. A woman from Rochester wanted to be "made" into a 5K runner on their show "Made." So this race was her graduation. At the packet pick up, we had to sign a waiver that it was OK that we were filmed. I'll definitely look forward to this show to see if we made it on TV. At the hotel we ran into another friend of ours Kelly who trained with us for Iron Girl. We then headed back out to the car to get into our race clothes and have a PB sandwich. While we were out there we ran into our friends Sue and Naiela so it was really nice to have a group from the Y there.

After we all got dressed (including putting on a loaner Santa hat from Naiela) we headed toward the start line to check things out. The start was on the bridge similar to the one in the movie.

We jogged around a little, then headed to the Community Center to warm up and get in one more bathroom break.

Everyone started to gather on the bridge while we waited for the start. The "Made" woman was nearby along with the camera crews in addition to some bag pipers.

The "starting gun" was courtesy of the woman who played the little girl in the "Wonderful Life" movie. Her famous line was "Every time a bell rings, an angel gets its wings" or something like that (I have to admit, I've never seen the entire movie!) When she said the word "wings" that was when we started.

I started off and my legs quickly started to protest. They probably figured they had already done their run for the day and wondered why I was stupid enough to run again. I quickly lost sight of everyone else as they quickly took off. But, my plan all along was to take it slow and not go for a PR.

When we first started it wasn't all that dark out which was disappointing because I wanted to see all the Christmas lights. But, that soon changed and we had pretty lights to meet us around every turn. Many neighbors were out to cheer us on and we even had a chorus singing carols at a fire station.

As we came down the main street heading toward the finish, I was running with this older man. We passed a bank and he shouted "Merry Christmas you old savings and loan!" (Again, a line from the movie which doesn't have much meaning to me.) As we neared the finish, I kicked it into high gear and left him in my dust. My finish time was 32:27 or something around that...I cleared the time out of my Garmin and I haven't downloaded it yet to get the time again.

We hung out at the finish line to see the "Made" woman cross the finish line which she did in about 45 min or so. Even though I was pretty spent from running earlier in the day, I was determined not to let her beat me. Mission accomplished.

I did have a disappointment that day due to the race. While I was gone, my husband took my son sledding. On one of his trips down the hill, he hit a bump which knocked his loose tooth out. I was sad that I missed that. But what makes matters worse is that, because I wasn't there and didn't have it drilled into my head that the Tooth Fairy needed to come that night, I forgot to leave money under his pillow. I know that running these races is good because I have to think of myself, but it makes me sad that my son suffered some sadness because of it. However, the Tooth Fairy quickly made up for her mistake by slipping in an extra few bucks. I definitely will have to be better about those things!

That's it for now. Next blog will probably be a look ahead to 2011.


Saturday, December 11, 2010

Dear Santa,

Hi Santa! Since Christmas is two weeks away, I thought it would be a good time to give you my Christmas list. Some things I want are material things and others are not, so I divided my list up accordingly.


* Specialized road bike from the Bike Loft
* Indoor bike trainer...only if I get the road bike
* CNY Triathlon Club tri top in pink
* CNY Triathlon Club membership renewed
* Entry fee into the 2011 Iron Girl
* Subscriptions to Runner's World Magazine and Triathlete Magazine
* Running shoes from Fleet Feet because I'm due
* Entry fee into the Empire State 1/2 Marathon
* Couple more pair of padded bike shorts
* Entry fee into the 2011 Green Lakes Triathlon
* Entry fee into the 2011 River Rat Triathlon in Clayton
* Kia Sorento
* Nuu-Muu running dress
* Smart Wool socks just like the ones I already have because they TOTALLY ROCK!
* Waterfront property so I can open water swim whenever I want

* Cool mantra to motivate me whenever I need it
* Sub 10-minute mile
* Sub 30-minute 5K
* A job or a couple of PT jobs that allow me to put time in training, have time for family, and have time to craft
* Martha Stewart like ability to keep my life running like a well oiled machine
* Family friendly job for Dan with decent pay, good benefits, and average stress levels
* Motivation, time, ability, etc to get my crafting business up and running once and for all

If the above is too much, just send 10s and 20s!

Thanks Santa!

Love, Debbie

Thursday, December 2, 2010

(Sniff) Baldwinsville (Sniff) Kiwanis (Sniff) Turkey (Sniff) Trot (Sniff) 10K (Sniff) Race (Sniff) Report (Sniff)

(A week late and, sorry, no pictures!)

Late this summer when I decided to continue working with Coach Kelly, the first thing we did was sit down to come up with a plan for training based on my desired race schedule. Since the run portion of my Iron Girl triathlon was the worst of the three disciplines (35:35 for a 5K) I really wanted to concentrate on running during the off season. I had a list of a half dozen or so 5K's I wanted to run hoping to steadily improve my time. I also mentioned to her that I wanted to try a year. However, Coach Kelly decided the timeline would be a bit different: the 10K would be done before the end of 2010. So, she started checking the 5K's I wanted to do to see if any of them also offered a 10K. I crossed my fingers hoping none of the races had a 10K, but no such luck. The choice: the Baldwinsville Kiwanis Turkey Trot on Thanksgiving morning. I had about 3 months to prepare, so I wrapped my brain around the thought and marked it on my calendar. Although I was nervous, I never doubted I could finish it.


In the week leading up to the race, coach Kelly devised a plan for my race. In a typical 5K, I run zone 2 for the first mile, zone 3 for the second mile, and all out for the rest. For the 10K, the plan was to run zone 2 for the first half, then treat the second half like a typical 5K. Recently I have been participating in the YMCA running clinic guided by local running rock star Kevin Collins. The Saturday before, I ran 1:05 in a low zone 3 and logged 5.5 miles. That was only 0.7 miles shy of the Turkey Trot, so I was confident I could finish the race in less than 1:15 which was my goal.

Two days before the race I started feeling a slight tickle in my throat and even felt a little warm. I hoped and prayed I wasn't coming down with a cold. I continued to feel the same the day before.

On race morning I woke up still feeling like crap. I had my typical PB&J sandwich with coffee/chocolate milk about 2 hours before the start fo the race. This has worked well for me in the past with 5K's, so I didn't want to fix what wasn't broke.

I got to the race about 1/2 hour before th start and got a nice parking spot only a few houses down from the start line. Cool! I jogged a little to warm up in the 25* weather and was pretty calm waiting for the horn.


The horn sounded about 10 minutes late, so I was anxious to get going. We started off and the very first part was up hill and got my HR up quickly. By the end of the race I would learn that Baldwinsville was a lot more hilly than I ever knew. It seemed like I was getting passed by everyone. I started to worry that I would come in last...something I definitely didn't want. I can hold my own running 5K's because there's usually people who walk, but there were no walkers here. For a moment I really questioned if I should be doing it, but I had started and I was determined to finish...even if it was last.

I was having trouble running in zone 2 probably because of my cold medication. I ran most of the race in zone 3, but I actually felt OK doing it.

Just before the half way mark we made a left turn. I had been wanting to turn around to see how many people I was "beating," but I had resisted the urge. However, once I made that turn, I had to take a look. I saw about a dozen people. Please, God, don't let them pass me!!!! My plan was to speed up the second half of the race, so I convinced myself that they probably didn't have a cool plan like I had and they probably would be slowing, not speeding up.

Another thing that happened at about the half way mark was my stomach started growling. My PB&J sandwich 2 hours before a 5K might not be the best plan for a 10K. Will have to work on this!

I saw the last water station and estimated it was about 1.5 miles from the finish. Two ladies had passed me just before the table then stopped to get a drink and walk a bit. I was determined not to let them pass me again. There was an up hill, so I turned it on as best as I could. I even passed one more person on my way to the finish. As I turned the corner to the finish, you could practically hear crickets because most of the crowd was gone and on their way home to their Thanksgiving feasts.


I crossed the finish line in 1:07:44 and got a high-five from someone in a polar bear suit. He was probably wishing us slow pokes would finish so he could get out of that stupid smelly suit. I was very chilled at that point. About 2/3 through the race, I was hot and took my hat off to cool down a bit. Eventually I put it back on before the finish, but I had probably left it off too long. I was looking forward to the pizza being offered, but it was gone by the time I finished. Not only was there no celebration when I finished, but there was little food either. Very disappointing for something that was a milestone for me. The water and banana I did manage to get tasted like crap, probably because of my cold.

The walk to my car was brutal. I was freezing, hungry, and just wanted to go home. Note to self: park your car close to the FINISH line, not the start line!

Anticipating a delicious Thanksgiving dinner, I didn't eat a lot when I got home. I probably should have because I really started to feel queezy, but I did snap out of it once I got turkey, stuffing, etc in my tummy....YUM!

Although my legs really felt stiff the rest of the day, I was pleasantly surprised when they didn't hurt the next day. Maybe my body is getting used to this running stuff after all!

So, I've got one more race planned for 2010 (It's a Wonderful Run on Dec 11, a 5K). I definitely will do more 10K's, but I think from now on a 5K is sufficient on Thanksgiving Day. That way I'll actually get a slice of pizza!