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Milton, Ontario, Canada

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Week 6!

Another great week, even if I did miss a run.

Sunday: I ran from my house, to my parent's house. This is something I always wanted to do and it was a great feeling to complete the run. 16k, 1:46:18.

Monday: Rest + Fastball. I went 1 for 3 with an RBI and run scored. I also made a sweet catch at second base. Anyone who thinks women's softball is easy should watch a few games.

Tuesday: Thomas Street Hills! 7 repeats with VO2 max on the 7th repeat. This was a hard run, but 100% worth it. I'm so glad I made the decision to get out with the group for hills and that the clinic leader let me join in. I also got to talking with another woman who lives in Milton and it looks like we're going to try to hook up for some runs. 8k, 54:36

Wednesday: I was planning to run an easy 8-10k with my friend Sarah (and maybe Alison), but Sarah cancelled so I decided to run my intervals instead. A run I didn't want to complete turned into a great workout and 10k PB!. It just goes to show you that getting out there even when you don't want to bring surprises. 11.23k, 1:08:54

Thursday: Rest.

Friday: I put Fergus in the stroller and ran over to meet Jenn with her baby, Jackson and we ran through downtown. A quick stop at her place for the washroom and then home again. 8.62k, 1:09:32

It is hard to run with the stroller, but how cute are these besties?

Saturday: 5k Rest. We had a busy day as we had a family party in Whitby at 2pm and I wanted to go to the farmers market. I met up with Jenn and Jackson again at her house and we ended up walking, so I did get a 3.5k walk in with the stroller, but more importantly, I got loads of potatoes (including PURPLE ones), strawberries, meat pies and a lovely bunch of flowers for my cousin at the market.

Total KM: 43.85 Total Time: 4:59:20 Average Pace Per KM: 0:6:50

Actually, that wasn't a bad week at all! Hope you had a good one.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Excuses, excuses

Last night, my training plan called for me to run 7x400m intervals at the track. Originally, I was going to meet up with my friend Sarah to just do an easy run for 8-10k and hit the intervals later in the week, but she cancelled and I realised that I should just get them out of the way.

The problem was that I really, REALLY didn't want to.

I thought up every single excuse under the sun (and then ridiculed myself for them).

-I had a tetanus shot yesterday and my arm hurt (oh, princess!).

-Fergus hasn't been sleeping well and I was tired (poor muffin!).

-It would be almost 9pm by the time I got home and then I'd have to shower, make a lunch for Alasdair to take to camp and be too wound up to sleep until 11pm, thus making me tired for when Fergus woke up in the wee hours (again and again) (life just isn't fair!).

Of course, I got dressed as soon as I put Fergus to bed and headed out for the run. I decided to run to the track and then see how I felt. I figured I could just do the 10k easy I would have done with Sarah if nothing else.

50m into the run (when I had to stop to tie up my pants tighter as they were falling down), my legs felt like lead and I almost started into my 6k route instead of toward the track. That's when I really told myself to suck it up and kept heading for the track. Somehow, in the next 2.9k I managed to convince myself to get the intervals completed.

And so I did. I also only allowed myself to walk 20 seconds on each recovery lap, so that my heart rate didn't dip too much in the 400m rests.

I was aiming to hit 2:00 time (4:45 pace) per lap and I think I did rather well, considering I ran 7 hill repeats the night before:

1:54 (4:37)
1:57 (4:43)
1:56 (4:43)
1:57 (4:47)
1:57 (4:47)
1:59 (4:51)
1:58 (4:48)

I was really and truly spent by lap 5. I kept talking to myself throughout. I was telling myself to run tall, to keep my hands loose and not to cross my arms over my midsection while running. I used my arms to pump the strides in the last turns. By the time I was about 75m from starting my final lap, I was giving myself a pep-talk about lap 7:

This is the end of your zoo 10k. If you run this in under 2minutes you'll get a time under an hour. This is the last 400m of Hamilton. You'll break 2h10m in you run hard here

I pushed and pushed and ended up getting around the track in under 2 minutes.

Then it was 3k back home.

I was tired and running easy, happy to have gotten the laps in when I noticed that I would be able to best my 10k time from the 2009 Zoo Race if I just bumped my pace up a bit by 30 seconds. So, I did! I made sure to hit the lap button at 10k exactly and was very pleased when I got home to find a 2m33s PB of 1h00m31s.

Not bad for a night where I almost didn't even run.

Monday, August 15, 2011

Something I've always wanted to do

Every since I started running long distances (you know, like back in Feb or Mar), I have wanted to do a Sunday run from my home in Milton to my parent's home in Meadowvale. The route is a perfect 16k (10 miles) and my mum is a fantastic cook! I figured we could combine a Sunday night dinner with a training run.

Yesterday I was able to make this happen!

Today is Fergus' first birthday, so my sister and family were in town and we decided to enjoy the leftovers from Saturday's party at my parents house.

I set out at 13:34 after Fergus had gone down for his nap. I wasn't worried about the distance as I had run 16k the week before, but I was concerned about the time of day as I had been doing my long runs in the early mornings (and really enjoying them). I can say that I did have quite a bit of stiffness and fatigue in the first few Ks, but I think a lot of this had to do with the fact that I was on my feet all day on Saturday, hosting Fergus' birthday party.

I was also worried about having to run on the shoulder of Derry Road, but that ended up not being a problem as I probably only had to run about 5k on the shoulder and the traffic was fine. In fact, the first 6ks or so clicked by even with the stiffness and then I started to feel a bit low. I decided to stop at the next intersection and dig out my Gu Chomps and eat a few. I also had the epiphany that I could use my large water bottle to fill my handheld for easier water access, so I did all of that while walking. This happened to be at the exact time that my husband and the kids drove by and I didn't hear them honking or see them! My husband did take the time to BBM me to "Quit walking!" (I ran with my iPod on lower than normal and with my phone, just in case).

As I started running again, I felt good, until I noticed some movement out of the corner of my eye. It was a rather large German Shepherd who was following me along as I passed by his property. I promptly stopped as I'm not the biggest fan of dogs, much less big dogs. The dog also stopped. I started walking. So did he. I was running on the north side of the street so that I faced into traffic for safety, but decided that the imminent danger of being bitten by a strange dog was more pressing then the off chance that a car would hit me in broad daylight, so I zoomed across the four lanes of road and started running again.

So did the dog.

In fact, he came out closer to the road as if HE was going to cross the street as well, so I walked again with a wary eye on him until he turned back into his property. Once I was well clear of that property, I crossed back to the north side of the road for safety.

The Ks kept ticking away and I was having a hard time because of the constant headwind but making good time anyway. I just focused on keeping myself running tall, running easy and eating chomps and drinking when I needed to. Before I knew it I was at the 407 overpass and past the sign welcoming me to Mississauga (Meadowvale is a community in the north of the city). I welcomed my Garmin flipping over the 11k and let myself enjoy the boost that comes with knowing there is only 5k left of the run. At this time, I was also running with a lot of short breaks as there are lots of traffic lights, so I'm sure that also helped.

Before long, I was making the turn off Derry Road toward my parents house and then on to their street (as I turned onto my folks street, my mum turned in as well having just been out to pick up some rolls for supper!). I was very happy to be finished and out of the wind! I was also super excited to have fulfilled this goal of running from my house to my parent's house.

16k, 1:46:18, Average pace per KM: 0:06:38

Just think, next year when I'm in Marathon training, I can stop for a break and then head back home to complete a 20-miler!

Hmm, I guess I just set the next goal!

How as your long run this weekend?

Week 5!

Looking at my blog these days, I think you can pretty much tell that I am very busy enjoying the last days of my year-long Maternity Leave. I actually officially go back to work today, but I took three weeks holidays so I don't go back to the office until September 6th! Yippee for full pay!

Last week looked like this:

Sunday: 16k with tempo. This run went amazingly well! I ran a strategy from the clinic where you warm up for 15min, run tempo for 3x (6min tempo, 1 min rest), then 35 min easy and 2x (10min tempo, 2 min rest), then easy home. I averaged a 5:38 pace on the tempo parts and blasted the last one with a pace of 5:31! I also got totally soaked during the last part of the run and suspect that this is what made me run faster! 1:42:40.

Monday: Rest. And I played fastball that night.

Tuesday: 8.15k. The Thomas Street hill! 6x hill repeats, but I took them easy due to Sunday's workout. The running was great, but two people got their water belts with their car keys stolen at the base of the hill so it was a crappy night in that regard. I ended up running with J from the group to the GO Train station after the hills just to make sure everyone had a way home (they did), this is why I got 8ks in. 54:53


5.06k with the stroller. Easy. And fun. While I love to run with music unless I'm running with someone, it was great to run to the sound of Fergus babbling away as well! 33:39

Thursday: J was going to meet me for track intervals but ended up with a conflict and I spent the day at Wonderland with my four year old and some friends so this ended up being a rest day as well.

Friday: Supposed to be a rest day, but swapped it due to Thursday. My husband was home so I met my other friend J who is just picking up this running thing and we ran to the track (her with her new jogging stroller and her almost one year old) and then I did my 6x400m intervals. These were tough, but worth it! I started out too fast with a 4:29 loop, but only didn't hit my targeted pace of 4:45 on the last lap (4:50). Warm up: 1.5k, 13:26. Intervals and cool down: 6k, 35:54

I was supposed to run 5k on Saturday, but we did this instead:

Yep, Fergus is one year old TODAY!

Total KM: 36.71 Total Time: 4:00:32 Average Pace per KM: 0:06:33

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Week 4!

The weeks training for the Road To Hope half marathon in Hamilton are really flying by! I can't believe that I've already completed four weeks of training and that I've managed to pretty much stay on schedule.

Last week was a bit of a fall back week in that I kept the LSD run at the same distance and then took three days in a row off in order to go camping with my family and family friends.

So, the week rounded out like this:

Sunday: 14.75k. LSD solo run at 0635 again. I am really loving this time to get out the door for a run on Sunday. I'm already up anyway with Fergus and sure I could sleep in as it is my day (my husband sleeps in on Saturday), but I love the empty roads, the cooler temperatures and getting back to the house in time for breakfast and Mass with my oldest. 1:37:40

We left for the Pinery at lunch that day and so I had Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday as rest days. I was planning on running something on Wednesday evening, but I came home with a sore throat and was in bed by 8pm.

Thursday: 10.17k. INTERVALS!!! I rocked them out! 1:05:37

Friday: 6.4k. I ran a super easy run at the gym on Friday on the treadmill. I had both boys all day and I loved getting a mini break while they were taken care of by the in-gym daycare. You can't beat $7 for two hours of child care for two children. The run was boring and I even suffered through a horrid reality show called "Holly's World". 0:44:45.

Saturday: 3.3k. Another learn to run with my good friend Jenn. I took Fergus and the jogging stroller and chatted her ear off while we did a short loop around my neighbourhood. The great thing about running with friends is that you can then do spontaneous Farmer's Market trips after the run. We celebrated a great LTR by stocking up on good fruit and veggies after. 0:28:59

So, there you go. A fall back week for sure, but a good one with some hard work as well.

Total KM: 34.62k Total Time: 3h57m01s Average Pace per KM: 0:06:51

Friday, August 5, 2011

Foto Friday

Camping at the Pinery!

Ha! This was the tent we bought as a "play" tent for the kids. My four year old couldn't even stand up in it.

The Beach was beautiful!

And we all loved it.

Thursday, August 4, 2011


I ran my second set of intervals last night. I ran 5x400 with 400 recovery's in between. It was difficult.

It was the first time I was able to go to the high school track to get the intervals completed. Last week I ended up at my parents house and while they watched the kids, I ran at my old elementary school, but the track is just a paved path, not quite 400m long. That first week ended up being okay though as those four repeats let me know a few things.

1. I can run intervals
2. I can run them at a 5 minute pace per KM

My intention this week was to run them when we got home from our annual August long weekend camping trip on Wednesday. Unfortunately, I was unable to do so as I was not feeling very well at all and ended up in bed right after the baby (at 7:30!). I think the sore throat I had combined with being kept awake until 2:30am the night before (due to a boisterous Euchre game at a neighbouring site) caught up with me and I just crashed.

Thursday rolled around and we got back to normal life, including hosting a play date and I decided that I'd run to the track for sure (about 3k) and turn around if I wasn't feeling up to intervals.

After the baby was in bed, I headed out into the lovely setting sun and 25C temperatures toward the high school. I got there and there was a Men's League Flag Football game in progress, so I decided that an audience of strangers would be enough motivation to push through the 5x400s (with 400m recoveries).

Somehow, I ended up averaging 416m per lap, but I am very pleased to say that I did it!

Time per lap (pace per KM): 1:52 (4:30)-1:55 (4:34)-1:57 (4:44)-1:58 (4:44)-1:55 (4:45).

I am having a hate/love relationship with this type of training so far. I hate running them, but love seeing the great times!

The run home (which I extended to get a full 10k in), was slow and difficult. I was bang on a 7:00 per KM pace and am glad I took my time. Can't wait to see how I fare next week with 6 repeats!

Week 3!

I know this is late, but we headed out camping on Sunday, so I didn't have time to get on a computer until now. It was a great four days away with lovely company and the kids did great! Photos to come of the beauty of Lake Huron at the Pinery.

Sunday: 14.5k My Longest Solo Distance EVER! It was an amazing day for a run. 1:35:59

Tuesday: 5.81k. Hills! I returned to the Thomas Street hill with the group and battled my way up four hills, rocking out the pace again (5:49-6:01-5:59-6:15). Yeah, the last one was brutal! 0:38:51

Thursday: 9k. My first time running intervals! I dropped my kids off at my parents house and then ran the slightly shorter than 400m track at my old elementary school. The plan called for 4x400 with a 400m recovery and I hit the planned 2mins per 400m each time (2:07-2:00-1:59-1:57). I then did a long recovery jog home to get the KMs in. 0:57:29

Friday: 6.18k. Just a short run in my subdivision to get it in. I felt alright, but it was just a run, you know... nothing special. 0:39:59

Total KM: 35.49k Total Time: 3:52:18 Ave pace per KM: 0:6:33

Another great week!