Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Century legs!

I had to head out running three mornings in a row to do it, but this morning I clicked over to clock 100 kilometres for the month of March, woohooo! I'm beyond proud of myself, my previous best month was February when I clocked 47.56k's, and I've just totally smooooshed that record :D
Onwards and upwards, says I....Oh, I'm also wondering if maybe I should run the Melbourne Half Marathon in October....just to see if I think it would be a good venue for my first full marathon next year :D

Monday, March 28, 2011

Rocket (wo)man

A cool 7 and a bit this morning, with Oscardog and Elton John for company. My head was tired of podcasts and thumping energetic tunes, so I downloaded a bit of Elton and took him for a run. It was surprisingly great to run to, whether it was a fast track or a ballad....nice.
I did a few faster intervals this morning, at one point Runmeter blurted out that I was doing a 5:20k! Never ever done that! I'm sure it wasn't sustainable, but it feels good to be playing with speed. I try to be careful with going fast, as it's associated with injury, and also because it just makes me feel damn tired, and a lot faster than I would otherwise. I knocked the seven k out in under and hour, which means that it's easily done in the hour or so I have to run in the morning before work.
OMG, just checked my monthly distance, and if i can run another 8.5 between now and Friday, i will have clocked 100ks this month! My previous best ever is less than fifty!! I am so, soo heading out tomorrow and Thursday.

Sunday, March 27, 2011

The long long run

Yesterday's long run was another record-breaking effort, at twelve and a half kilometres, wahoo!! I felt crap before heading out and was really suffering a lack of motivation, but felt really really good once I got a few kilometres in. I'm finding lately that I don't really warm up until I'm several kilometres in, and that after seven or eight I feel even better.

Another amazing thing is that even though I'm doing Jeff Galloway's run-walk-run method I'm actually getting faster! My times have increased by a minute per k over the last month, which I find amazing but feel really good about.
I've been feeling a bit tired and stressed lately, maybe even a little depressed. a lot of things are changing in my workplace in ways I do not like, and the changing of the seasons makes me feel slightly sad. I don't love the hot weather but it saddens me to think that my work in an office means I will not see much sun for the next six months. I'm sleeping poorly, lacking motivation to run, craving sugar, low mood, irritable....blah. So I'm concentrating on eating well and reminding myself that this too shall pass.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011


It's official! I'm all registered and paid up to run the 2011 Run Melbourne Half Marathon, wahooo! I'm nervous obviously but I feel confident and good about it :)
I also bagged myself a sweet commemorative t-shirt to motivate myself, just as a visual reminder of the goal.

I ran a slow 6.65 yesterday in terrible humidity. By the end of it I was more sweat than woman! I'm working at putting in an easy-ish week this week as my legs are feeling pretty whipped at the moment and I want to be reasonably fresh for this weekend's 12.5k long run. I've put 20k or just over in my legs for the last two weeks in a row, I did want to build to 25 this week by maybe adding in a third run...hmm, if my legs feel good on Friday maybe I still will :) I'm stuck somewhere in between feeling like I'm punishing my legs and being addicted to putting in the kilometres and seeing the data rack up. I'd love to eventually be running 35 or 40 a week, but that might be a ways off. For the time being it's just exciting to be building up as much as I have :)

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Sunday bloody Sunday

Yesterday I went for the crappest run ever, urgggg. Thank God it only went for five ks! I had numerous gear problems that led to me really struggling through it.
I'd coloured my hair on Friday and it was still leaking dye, so wearing my (white) hat was out. No hat means I need sunscreen, which I sort of hate. No hat + sunscreen equalled stinging sweat that ran into my eyes and burned hideously.
My legs were heavy and tired from a day standing up cooking in the kitchen, so I thought I'd do them a favour and wear my compression socks. WRONG! I was in agony, my calves were stringy feeling and painful. I'm blaming it entirely on the socks, they seems to prevent my muscles working properly and have now been banished to recovery land.
The undies and running skirt that I've run in numerous times before were all of a sudden not happy to stay happily snugged round my butt, preferring to venture up into the canyon that is my buttcrack. Sighhh. This led to uncomfortable running interspersed with undignified moments of rescuing my undies from crack land, the only upside is that Mike says my undies are prolly doing that because I've lost weight.
Rounding out the experience was one overexcited and underbehaving Jack Russell who shall remain nameless (he knows who he is, grr).
All in all I'm exceedingly glad that wasn't a long run. My lower legs remain a bit tired, so rather than aiming for three runs during the week I'm shooting for two six kilometre runs before Sunday's twelve and a half, as I feel I need a little extra rest and I want to stay energised and feeling good.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Catch a tiger by the toe..

I went into work late today so that I could run an errand, which meant I could sneak in a few extra k's, wahoo! Set out just after 6am and put in a leisurely 8ks. It feels so good to be running these longer distances, and I get so excited about it that sometimes when I know I'm heading out to run in the morning I can barely sleep. Distance running is both opening up my world and making it smaller as I expand beyond my regular 4k loop and search out new routes.
I ran down my 'half pipe' and into Keilor this morning. If I'd been wondering where the hills in the West are, I certainly found them! Keilor has hilly roads and smaller hilly streets in abundance so I am sure to get in some great hillwork there. It was great to feel the fatigue in my legs today and really get my blood pumping. I am not much of a one for speedwork, but slowly plodding up hills is a great workout.
I really feel like I have the world on a string just now, like anything is possible. I'm so in love with running, the bug has bitten me worse than ever. I'm so excited about the half marathon I'm planning to run in July, and all the training beforehand and evrything after. I feel so lucky to have found Jeff Galloway and his methods, because I don't think I would have been able to do these distances safely without the techniques, but with them I feel unstoppable. Life is grand.

Monday, March 14, 2011

I'ma rip this shit til my bones collapse

I'm a little behind! But I have much good news to tell after a massive week of running, wahooo! I had a week full of firsts. My first week of topping 20ks for the week, my first long run in a skirt, my first bodyglide experience, but most exciting of all, my first double digit run!
That's right, you heard it here first! I finally smashed myself my very first ten kilometre run. I was a bit worried beforehand but it went really well, and I am really pleased with how well I recovered, too.
It was actually 10.6 kilometres in the end, I'm pretty happy with the route I chose, I went over the train tracks for the first time as I'm rapidly running out of neighbourhood to explore. It was mostly flat but had some interesting stuff to look at, and I was basically just loving life. I'm starting to really enjoy the longer distances, I feel like I don't really warm up now until I'm 4 or 5 ks in.
Anyhoo, for recovery I drank some Endura ( I had a dose the day before, a dose that i slurped before and immediately after, and a third dose for rehydration) I spent ten minutes post-run laying on the floor with my legs inverted (this felt super, super good), I ran cool water over my legs in the shower (also super nice) and rubbed them down with ice gel. I also tried to spend some time upright and moving around post run, which I think helped a bit.
Yesterday and today I had some tightness in the hamstrings, but I really feel like I'm building some new muscle there. I went out this morning and did a slow five k with no real soreness or trouble.
Now, this is a stepdown week but I'm contemplating adding in an extra five k run during the week, as I really feel like 20ks is something I want to do every week. I have a short run of five listed for the weekend, so if I do three other fives during the week then there's my twenty, wahoo! I know that last time I experimented with extra distance during the week it didn't end well, but I feel that now with the intervals and stuff I could do it without any real trouble.

In other news, Bodyglide!!! I bought my first ever tube of this little miracle, and then used it to run ten ks in a skirt! It's a special 'skin lube' that prevents chafing, it comes in a little solid stick like deodorant, and you rub it onto the places where you chafe. I went to town with it on my inner thighs, and had no chafe at all there. Sadly, while I also put it on the inner bit of my arm where my iPhone armband goes, it would appear nothing can defeat the evil armband and I did chafe there to the point where it has actually scabbed a bit, ewwww. But, Bodyglide still rocks.
Phewww, i think I've blogged as much as I can for one day....suffice it to say that I'm going great guns, running my legs off, and so grateful to have found Galloway training to let me do it!

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Tired and hungry

Yesterday was a rough day! I've been working hard on my diet for three weeks now, and have lost four kilograms, but I have to admit I'm doing it hard!
Usually I feel pretty in control, but after yesterday's 6k run in the morning I was starving all day. I'd eat a little food for my lunch or snacks and it would just barely hold me until it was time to eat again. My tummy hurt and I felt nauseous and out of control. I can feel that even though the scales haven't budged in a week I'm losing mass, because I definitely look and feel smaller. I would have probably sold my soul if Satan had the good sense to pop up with a chicken dinner.
I even had trouble sleeping because I was so hungry. I was also feeling pretty exhausted and generally wrung out after my early start and a super busy day at work.
The Weight Watchers system I use gives you activity points for exercise, based on weight, time spent exercising, and intensity of exercise. I count these points but I don't eat them, as I never have and thought it would slow down my weight loss. But it's taking me quite a long time to lose each kilogram, so I am wondering if I am actually undereating? I've never earnt so many exercise points before, I used to earn one or two a day but I routinely earn three or four at least on days I run. They end up banked until the end of the week when they disappear, and some weeks I have banked 35 or 40. I also don't eat all my points everyday, which could be impacting on my loss. I'm planning to experiment with eating my activity points, initially I'm going to eat them all and see how it impacts on loss, and then if that doesn't work I'll maybe just eat half of them or something. I'm also planning to treat myself to a larger lunch than usual, because I feel so unwell from being continually hungry, although I have to run a couple of errands at lunch so I'll have to make time for that.
This morning I am still hungry and exhausted, but trying to be upbeat and focused about it. I bet Rocky felt tired and got sick of crappy food when he was training to beat Drago (i know he's ficitional, I just don't care). I bet every Olympic athlete had a day where they looked at their bowl of oatmeal/eggs/veggies for the millionth time that month and though, "Crapppp". I bet they were exhausted, I bet they got bored, I bet they wondered why the heck they were doing what they were doing. I bet Dean Karnazes was well sick of marathons. I bet Batman thought, "Piss off Gotham City, solve your own shit" and rolled over for another hour of sleep.
And all I'm trying to do is run one little old half marathon, geez!

Monday, March 7, 2011

Hills and Bondi Band goodness

Six kilometres this morning, in very windy, very dark conditions. I always find that in Melbourne as the seasons change it gets very dark all of a sudden, it's never a gradual thing.
I ran my new trail down Green Gully, I'd Google mapped it and it was supposed to be a six point six kilometre return trip, but it turned out to be way less than that. The upshot of that is that I can probably run down the gully and up the other side within plenty of time and without too much distance.
As for the actual hill itself, it turned out to be a totally textbook experience! Short strides, high turnover, feet under body and up we go! I continued to follow my intervals so I wouldn't get too tired and was overall really pleased with how it went. It was a good run overall, considering how tired I was when I went out. Some stiffness through the front of my calves, but I am laying down some new muscle there so I suppose it's to expected, I'll just need to keep stretching and massaging them.
When I got into work I was all excited that my Bondi Band had finally arrived....but only the headband, not my ponyhat, bahh! Still, as you can see above, the headband itself is pretty groovy, so I'm looking forward to testing it out :)

Sunday, March 6, 2011

From little runs, big runs grow!

Here we are on Monday (again, I'm sure we had Monday last week), the low point of the Universe, bah!
Yesterday was pseudo-long run day, in that it was the long run day you have when you're not having a long run. I went to the park to do some hill work with Os.
It was certainly educational! The hills I was tackling were dauntingly steep and large, and they kicked my arse quickly and efficiently. The muscles in the front of my calves are a little tight today, and they fatigued very quickly as I was tackling the hills, but I sort of love the slight soreness in my legs. It makes me feel powerful and strong, I love that I'm building muscle strength in my legs.
In light of that I've decided to include some hills at least once a week. I found a big, bad-ass mother fracker hill that I can stretch my run to cover (it makes it a 6.6k loop, but I'd been wanting to stretch my route anyways).
I wore one of my new 2XU running skirts for my little jaunt, and was very pleasantly surprised by how comfortable I felt in it. It's a little longer than my one, and the knicks under it make me feel really secure. I did get a tiny bit of very very mild 'chub rub' on the upper inner thighs, but nothing that left a visible mark or broke the skin at all. I reckon a bit of Bodyglide or such and I'd be set!
Sooo, tomorrow I'm hoping to run my new hill route (Naturally I'll let you know how it goes) and see how it goes in terms of time/pain factor/doability.

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

2XU madness

Made it out for a run this morning (just shy of 6k), making this the first Thursday I've managed to get out of bed and stick to the planned schedule, yayyy! It was an interesting run, almost as soon as I got out of bed I could feel that my body had very little 'fuel' in the tank as I hadn't eaten much the day before. I had an easy run planned so decided to use the oppportunity to see what it felt like to run empty, and how I'd feel and perform with low glycogen stores.
there were a few points where I had trouble controlling my legs (they seem to fly out a bit when I'm tired, anyways) but I was able to concentrate and bring it together. The first two ks were a struggle but by the four k mark I felt like I was flying, just fantastic.
I'm experimenting with Endura rehydration blend at present to see if it can help with the soreness I've been experiencing after my long runs. It has added magnesium which is supposed to help cramping, and I'm moving up to distances where I'd need to consider electrolyte replacement anyways, so I bought a couple of sachets to try before committing and spending $30 on a big tub. I had one after my run this morning and to be entirely honest it didn't sit very well initially, which is odd as I've never had issues with any of the previous gels/sports/protein drinks I've tried. I could really taste the salts in it though! I plan to give it another try on Sunday after my run. I'm getting more and more excited about the idea of a fun run in the park with Os, chasing butterflies and running some hills!

On another note, I am probably not allowed to go near the 2XU outlet for awhile! After my spree there last week, a friend asked me to pop down and check their prices on compression tights (it's only two blocks from my work) and I found bargains while I was there! A funnel neck lightweight long sleeve top (with thumb holes and a little zipper to loosen the neck if needs be)good for layering. It's the most putrid shade of baby pink, but hey, who cares at 5am? Also, it was $10!
But the next thing made me really (pardon the french) lose my shit! Running skirts!! In my size! For $10!! I bought two :) one black, one navy blue. They also had grey....I may go back and get a grey one after I've tested these two. I'm also contemplating a vest ($70) because then I'll basically have a bunch of layering options, but mostly because the vest had pockets up the wazoo and I'm totally obsessed with pockets, though I am unsure that I'm a vest person. And maybe one more lightweight long sleeve.
Gah, like I said, I think I need to ban myself from 2XU for awhile :)