Monday, September 24, 2012

New Milestones!

Hi Marathon Fans!  We hit some big milestones this week!  First, Evan turned 30 on Thursday.  To celebrate, we went on an early morning run through the zoo.

Ok, so this photo was not from our run, but it does show the sun bear, which is Evan's favorite, other than the gibbons.  The bears were out on Thursday, the gibbons were not.  It was a lovely 5 miles to start off our day.

Friday we hosted a group of friends for apps & drinks and went to dinner at Salpicon to round out the birthday celebrations.

Saturday was a rest day, because we were not keen on attempting 20 miles after having been out late celebrating the night before.

Our second big milestone of the week was completing TWENTY miles for the first time ever yesterday!

Sunday morning was beautiful!  We fueled up with steel cut oats with peanut butter, banana, cinnamon and chia seeds before we headed out.

We also packed some fuel to eat along the way.  We started out with these choices, of which Evan took the Espresso Power Shots (he loves that stuff!) and I took chomps, the shot block and sport beans.  We split everything, and I've decided that I like having the variety of the bitter espresso shots with the sweet/gummy snacks.  The texture of the shots/Gu is still a bit much for me, so it definitely helps that we share. We also ended up stopping for a Gatorade each around mile 12.  We've decided not to underestimate the power of good old Gatorade, because at that point we needed it!

How do you fuel up for a long run?  We're still learning what we like and what works best, but with only six weeks to go until the marathon we don't have a lot of time left to come up with our race-day fuel strategy!

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

The Lake is the Place (for long runs)

So after my last running update, I think the actual jetlag kicked in.  I did not exactly hit my mileage as scheduled last week, but I did get there with a Friday medium run (~7 miles) and pushing our long run to Sunday.  I'm catching up!

This week I even hit a new high mileage: Evan and I ran 17 or 18 miles on Sunday.  We were glad for a break from the hot, humid weather, and it even seems that fall has arrived in Chicago this week.

I'll need to remember to take pictures a little earlier in our runs.  This was after approximately 15 miles, and we probably look it.

We miss trotting around the bridle path in central park, but this view of lake and sailboats isn't half bad.

We have discovered the fuel and mindset are important to this kind of distance.  Evan likes Gu, but I'm having trouble getting used to the consistency.  I like the Gu chomps though.

We ran with my Runkeeper app on this time, and it clocked our first section realistically, but it got screwed up on the way back, saying we covered a total of 25 miles at an average 7:13 pace.  So we are guessing that the run was 17-18 miles total.

Maybe something to strive for.

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Team for Kids: I'm running for a reason.

If you're reading this, you've either come across my blog randomly online (yay, thanks for reading!) or I've sent you the link because you've sponsored me through Team for Kids.  As many of you already know, it's my personal goal to raise at least $26.20 from 100 people before running the NYC marathon on November 4.

If you have not yet had a chance to donate, I would love your support.  It goes to a great charity doing wonderful things for the kids in its programs and also for the adults getting ready to run in November.  The video explains much better than I do:

Thanks for your support!

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Back to Life, Back to Reality...

To continue the playlist theme, here's a throwback with a nice beat for a running playlist.  Good for getting back in the groove, I think.

Since my knees were bothering me a little bit before my travels, I'm going to chalk it up as a good thing that I did not hit my mileage while traveling.  Actually, considering the amount of walking we did in London, I very well may be close to the mileage I was going for, I just wasn't running those miles on my schedule.  And my knees are feeling better - ready to run.

Now that I'm back, I'm committed to hitting my goal mileage this week:
Today: 7 mile challenge run (speedwork!)
Tomorrow: 6 mile easy run
Friday: rest or cross train
Saturday: 18 mile long run (Holy cow, 18?!?!? This is for real.)

Follow along and see if I can really get that many miles in!

London was a blast, but I'm glad to be back.  Just one more thing to close - Sunday we visited this exhibit at the Portrait gallery, which was excellent.  I love Dorothy Wilding's image of the queen for her coronation, and I love this quote:

"Let us not take ourselves too seriously."
~Queen Elizabeth II

In lieu of a long run, this weekend was more about coffee and good friends.  Because, it's good to have a balance.

Off to get 7 miles in!
(PS, I'm back to posting in real time.  Thanks for catching up.)

Woke up in London yesterday...

Found myself in the city, near Picadilly...

Even before I was planning my London trip, I was in love with this song.  It gets me so pumped up for a long run, so it was on my playlist anyway, but I've been listening to it a lot more since I've been here!
It feels like autumn has arrived in London, with a few leaves blowing around and a clear, cloudless sky letting the sun warm anyone basking outside.  It is a lovely break from the steaminess I've been running through in the US lately.  Today I did about 5-6 miles around Kensington - up to Kensington Gardens & Hyde Park.  I love exploring runs, they are so refreshing!

(PS, this post is also time-delayed, sorry!)

A long run and a spot of Vitamin Water (oops, time delay!)

(Ooops, I did not have as much internet access as I thought I would this week, so this post is slightly delayed in its publication.  Sorry!)

Hello from across the pond!  This week's runs took me past some very scenic things.  Yesterday I did about 7-8 miles, though I walked the end because I was quite tired after adjusting to the time difference, and not starting with enough fuel!  I had a vitamin water and felt 100%.

There were two lovely things along the way today...

The first was a pub with extraordinary flowers.  I had to pause my run to take a photo because this just isn't something you'd see in the US.

The second really notable thing was Tower Bridge, of course, with the paralympics symbol now up.  It was lovely running along the Thames, and even though I'm still way below my mileage for this week, I was happy with 7 miles, and a lovely little stroll at the end with my vitamin water.

More to come!

Friday, September 7, 2012

Training on the go!

Hello marathon fans!  I've been tied up a bit with work (last week) and travel (this week), so I haven't posted as much as I'd have liked to.  Despite my recent crazy schedule, we've had some great runs along the way!

To make my 7:30 meetings all last week, I had to get out pretty early to get a few runs in.  The best part of this was definitely seeing the sunrise over lake Michigan.  Last week was mostly about shorter runs and fitting in time to run at all!

Then, over the weekend we were off to DC.  We were staying with friends in Alexandria, so we decided the most scenic route would be to head to DC.  The weather was okay for our long run, with rain/drizzle when we got to the Mall.  We had a great time anyway!  We ended up running about 9-10 miles, and then biking back.  It was fantastic scenery for a workout.

How do you fits runs into a busy schedule?