Knowing when it’s time to walk,,,on a run

If you follow me on twitter, you saw that last week, I guess, I hit the wall on my morning training run. I have never really experienced the wall so I am not entirely sure that is what occurred.

So you are saying to yourself, “She’s never hit the wall? But she has run all those long distance races, what gives?”

Well, I think I never hit the wall because I have never been pushing myself to my limit of what I am able to accomplish until now. Why now and not before? I guess I was too sacred and thought I wasn’t at the level of fitness that it took to push out of my box and into that, ‘what if I throw up’ zone.

That being said and you all knowing that last week was my down week, I am not sure if it was the fuel I was wasn’t taking in, the heat/humidity (though it felt cool to me), hydration or just fatigue.

What did it feel like? It felt like what everyone else describes, legs felt like they were running through mud, head fuzzy and a little dizzy, my mind telling me to stop and walk, stop and walk! BUT, how do you know when this is a ‘break through’ moment, or the moment where you need to stop?

(Here is a little insight about me but don’t spread it around…)I am obsessive, not to a mental state, but I get obsessed – there I said it! My obsessing takes me many places, one normal stop on the train ‘obsessions’ is Overtrainingsville. My friends and family can tell you I visit here at least once a year knowingly, probably more unknowingly.(Now back to your normally scheduled blog post whining session (sorry) …)

What did I do on the day I seemingly hit the wall? I got up as normal at 4:10am, drank some Amino Energy (grape) and headed out the door to swim. This morning was my sprint drills. I felt pretty good. After the drills I felt like I just wanted to close my eyes and go to sleep. I drank my Nuun Hydration and then headed out to my run at the trail. I had 5 miles to run. It was around 78 degrees, humidity was at around 88%. (Yes, I am acclimatized for this type of running.)

I took more swigs of Nuun and some swigs of my Mike’s recovery drink for calories and I stepped out of the car to stretch. I still felt like I could lay on the parking lot pavement and fall right to sleep. I told myself to suck it up and get going, and going I did. I was clocking 11 min pace, FAIL, I felt like I was walking. 2 miles later I couldn’t take it anymore but said (to myself) I would walk the rest and I did. I did finish walking the 5 miles but didn’t feel good at all, I had stopped at my car and grabbed my Mikes recovery drink and took it with me and drank it as I went.

The night before I rode my bike on the trail at 6pm for about 13 miles and then had a training session with Katie my Personal Trainer at 7pm. I may not have eaten enough afterwards…?

What happened? What was the problem? I am still trying to figure it out.

Thoughts? Comments? Have you ever felt this way? Help!


Prelude to my first open water training swim

This week I am in the Adirondack Mountains, the condo/cabin that I stay in is on a lake. I have planned for my first few open water swims in that lake.

I am nervous,scared, apprehensive, and a little excited to get my wetsuit on and take the plunge.

You never know what is lurking in the depths!

You never know what is lurking in the depths!

My nephew has agreed to kayak next to me and my niece has agreed to watching us from shore, I also have a bright fluorescent green swim cap that I am going to wear. I am taking all of these precautions because I read an article that said when going on an open water swim – have someone on the shore and a bright swim cap. Check! and check!

I have also made a pact with myself, and told it to those who are going with me to the Mountains that the first day we get there, after we are unpacked and settled, I am going to get my wetsuit on and get in the water – even if it is for a few minutes. This way I can get my jitters out and swim the rest of the week.

See, my fear is that I will get there and be so scared that the last day will come and the wetsuit never have gotten wet. That would be a huge FAIL>>>> So, I don’t want that. I am going to stick to my plan and see how it goes and then let you know.

I’ll let you know how it goes!

Do you have any tips for me for getting my wetsuit on and off?
Do you have suggestions for me on having a good first open water training swim?

Running in the heat

AKA: MR. 101As most of you east coast dwelling runners know, the heat, humidity, and almost constant thunder and lightning storms have plagued us for well over a month now. Though these conditions are not prime for getting a great training in, we still need to get out there and get our #’s in before the goal races we have set for ourselves occurs.

Here are some good strategies to help you be smart about protecting yourself in the heat;

Hydrate! Water is the most essential component in the human body. Waters role in the body is to cushion and protect vital organs, aid in digestion, and most importantly while we are out running in the heat – regulated body temperature.

 drink 17-20 oz of fluid 2 hrs before starting
drink 7-10 oz of fluid every 10-20 minutes during exercise
drink 16-24 oz of fluid when you finish, for every lb of body weight you lost during your exercise

*remember: rehydration occurs faster in the presence of Sodium, regardless if it is a sports drink!

Location Pick a shaded trail, be smart, a hot black-top road with no shade what-so-ever is going to be a huge FAIL on a hot and humid day.

Time of day Even though humidity is higher in the morning the temperature is usually lower, make sure you pick a nice shaded course and hit the streets early, before work, to beat the hot temperatures after work. I see those girls out in their bra tops and tiny shorts at 5:30pm in the 88 degree weather and I wonder, are they training for the Badwater UltraMarathon in Death Valley? Doubt it! WHAT ARE THEY THINKING??? (I digress…)

Intensity The intensity at which you complete your run should be lower than on a cool or not humid day. So, take it down a notch or two. You are not going to win or lose an event if you worked out with less intensity for a few work outs.

Temperature Know that various temperatures vs. Humidity will affect your body during hot days. Know that 10% humidity is generally safe up to 90 degrees but 50% humidity is a risk factor when you’re reaching the higher temps. Be smart about your age and physical fitness level when the humidity is high.i'm melting

Fitness Acclimatization, you can acclimatize your body within 14 days by slowly increasing your time exercising in the heat, starting with 15 minute segments a day. This will allow you to feel more comfortable and allow your body to function at a safer level when in the heat.

Clothing Wear sweat wicking, light clothing during hot runs. There are so many different clothing companies now a days that offer the highest tech fabric for any temperature. There is no excuse to have the wrong clothing on a hot day.

REST It is important to know when you need to rest or take your workout inside. When the humidity is high, don’t risk setting yourself back because you decided to hit the trail when the temperature was 85 degrees and the humidity was at 65% and you haven’t worked on your acclimatization.

It must be noted:  Don’t go out for a run AND run straight home when you hear thunder and see lightning!

Be smart and enjoy your runs! dog with fan

Training by the #’s

So this week was not has humid and hot, some nice cool mornings. This was also a week that I like to call a down week. Where my training schedule is less than the 3 other weeks of that 4 week period.

I like to give myself down weeks because it gives my brain and body a rest from all the intense training. I believe it helps me improve, keeps me from over training, and helps me stay motivated.

During this week I also need to watch what I am eating more closely because I am burning WAY fewer calories and if I am not careful could gain some weight and that is not something I want to do because I am not yet at my racing weight (more on that some other day)

So here goes, this week by the numbers…

22 miles run
3 miles walked (I’ll elaborate on this later)
1 hour with the trainer (working on my ULTRA tight Right shoulder, hip, and calf)
1000 meter normal swim
Speed drills in the pool: 10×25, 10×50, and 2×100
40 min. bike (I was able to get a thought other than that I was going to fall off in my head during this ride, Success!)

I still have, a lake swim and bike ride for this week.

Happy Chocolate Day!


Happy Chocolate Day! Go on, have some cake!

Happy Chocolate Day! Go on, have some cake!

Chocolate Day

When : Always July 7th

Chocolate Day is the perfect opportunity to eat you favorite chocolates in ample portions. Do you really need another excuse to over indulge with your favorite food treat?

Chocolate is America’s favorite flavor. It’s the flavor of choice in candies, ice cream, cakes, breakfast cereal, toppings, and a whole host of desserts. Unequaled in popularity, it certainly deserves a day in its honor.

Did you know? Chocolate is a vegetable. It comes from the Cacao tree found in rainforests.

We don’t need to tell you what to do to celebrate this day, do we? Eat Chocolate!

Check out the rest of this article at Holiday

Have a great and enjoyable Chocolate Day!

Have a great and enjoyable Chocolate Day!

Banking, Training, Trainer, and a quick race recap (warning, I complain a little)

Rounding out the week of my 2nd and 3rd weeks of tri-training, I feel like this has been my schedule forever. I am really settling right in and seeing results as I bank training sessions into my bank of ‘TRI-TRUST.’ No, that is not a real bank, but where I put all my training and will withdraw when I complete the Athleta Iron Girl 2013 in September AND when I hit the pavement in Philly for my 5th Marathon.

I also hit up the personal trainer this week and ran a 10k race and scored a PR. (SEE, this is where my bankable training comes in handy)

I banked the following numbers.
Week #2
35 miles ran
2425 meters swam
1 hr and 50 min. bike
Riding (horseback) 1 hr
Turbo Fire 45, HIIT 15 and Tone 30

Week #3 (still in progress, but expected!)
35 miles ran
2750 meters swam
50 min. bike

In other news… I went to see my old friend and Personal Trainer Katie this week. She tested my balance and we found that my whole right side is TIGHT! This includes, my shoulder, my hip, and my calf. So I have been doing all the stretches she suggested and I have already felt differences in my range of motion.

Also, I ran the Good Neighbor Day race on July 4th or (should be better known as) INDEPENDENCE DAY!

The race offers a 5k, 10k, and 15k run and walking and kiddie races. It is a 3 loop course, each loop is a 5k.

I ran the 10k. I have run the 15k a few times but I had 7 miles on my schedule so I chose the 10k and did a 1 mile warm up at or near race pace to get the feel.

So, I’ll cut to the chase. It was 76 degrees, about 98% humidity, which made the race temp feel like 86 degrees. The course is all black-top, no shade to speak of, but they spray water and neighbors put on their hoses and sprinklers which is nice. The police are great and super helpful to anyone in need. There are always plenty of people cheering the runners on, which is also nice.

The race went off late, per usual. All the runners were yelled at and practically got finger wagged by some lady on stage telling us to all stop talking and to listen up. I would understand if the information was important and was goign to save my life on the race course, but it wasn’t! Just unneccesary, really.

OK, I just have to say it, this race is my least favorite race, but it is the ONLY race around on Independence Day and that is why I do it. (sorry)

The race started and we were off. Many ran out too fast. (It is a small town race, so it is a great time to learn your running lessons see I kept slowing myself down, telling myself that the heat will kill me on the second lap if I didn’t watch it. 5k was done and I was on my second lap. I waved and said good morning to the Police Chief as he went by and he did the same. (note: my sister’s family are good friends with the Chief and his family, they are good people.)

Second loop and I wanted to push it, I knew there was a slight hill coming up so I waited until I hit the 2nd to last water station, dropped the whole cup of water on my head and ran. I ended up with a negative split! (yes, that is 2 races in a row!) and got a PR 9:02mm. That is unofficial though, cause they chip time, but they chip time by the gun not by the individual. I knew though that it took me 51 seconds to get to the sensors. Am I the only one that bothers? Do I take the time I know I did it in or do I take the gun time?

Anyways, I felt great at the finish, had to walk at least .25 miles (or so it felt) to get to the water. Why would they do that on such a hot day? Everyone was still just standing at the finish line making it a mob scene chit chatting, standing in runners way, and not replying when I asked if they knew where I could get water. They just looked at me like a deer in head lights, anyways… races are fun and I am happy I completed it.

Did you complete in an Independence Day race?