Monday, August 15, 2011

I Run For Pizza 5K Race Photos - 08/13/2011

These are some pretty horrible pictures, but I must remain consistent with my previous 5K race report and post the official photos.

Saturday, August 13, 2011

I Run For Pizza 5K Race Report - 08/13/2011

Run for pizza?  Me?  Well, if anything will get me to run, it's pizza.  And maybe ice cream.  Hey, Running Zone, can we have that arranged for the next race in the series?  Mmm ice cream.

Anyway, this morning, I got up bright and early (like 4:50am) to prepare for this 5K.  I know I need an hour in the morning to eat something and then let the food settle/pass through, whatever.  Apparently, the recommended pre-race meal of toast with peanut butter does not work out for me.  I won't go into details but lets just say when I got to the starting line, my stomach was still ...not happy.  We'll leave it at that.

So that combined with hot, muggy weather made for a horrible pre-race feeling.  I didn't even want to race, I wasn't feeling well, I haven't been training well, and I just didn't want to do it.  But of course, since I was already there, I did it anyway.  I just didn't expect to have a great time... I just wanted to finish.  So I could get pizza.

So now some photos:

The starting/finish line.

Shannon and me waiting for the start.
You can see in my eyes that I was not feeling up to this. lol

The section we start in.  It says "healthy WALKERS", but people in this section always jog after crossing the start line and then I feel slow because I'm walking and I feel pressured to go faster.  But I don't want to start at the end of the pack.  Dilemma.

Okay, so the actual race.... my plan was 5 minutes warm up walk, 1 minute hard running, 1:30 of walking as fast as I felt like to recover from the hard running, then 1 minute hard running, 1:30 recovery, etc.... I was going to attempt doing that through the whole 5K.

I started off with the 5 minute warm up walk, instead of starting out slow jogging like I did for the last race - lesson learned, don't start off too fast.  After about 4 minutes of warm up, I started to pick up my pace into a very slow jog because I knew the hard running was coming soon.  I did pretty well with the hard running/recovery intervals for the most part.  I'd say out of like 18 intervals (37 total), I walked through the running part on maybe 5 of them.  I just needed more time to recover and didn't want to push too hard.  Based on my RunKeeper activity log, my fastest running interval was 10:33!  WHAT!!  I had no idea I could even move that fast.  Of course, that might have been for one of the intervals I had to cut short because I ran out of breath.  The walking interval following that was 25:48 pace. lol  That same log shows my slowest interval was a walking pace of 28:21 after a 10:40 running pace, so yeah, kinda balances that out.  I run faster, but then I need to walk much slower to recover.  I must find a happy medium here!

Anyway, I survived and I finished!  My official posted time was 50:07, which is a whopping two seconds faster than my previous 5K time.  Amazing, but hey, it's a new PR!  Next one, I WILL be sub-50 dangit!

So then it was pizza time!

The line was really long. :(

Shannon had to leave, so I waited over by the stage area for the little bit until the pizza/food area became a little less congested.

Then it was time.

Oranges are 100% definitely my new favorite post race snack.  
I ate so many. lol
They also had danishes and bananas.
Much better food selection than my last 5K too!

I didn't take a picture of the pizza section because I was too anxious to get it on my plate ASAP.

My post race plates of deliciousness!

My reason for completing this race.

So after chowing down on all of that satisfying food, it was time for the awards ceremony.  This is the WORST part for me.  I will never ever win.  It's always the same people that in.  And there are like 5378957829 age categories (for male and female of course, so DOUBLE that) and it takes FOR-EV-ER.  But the grand prize giveaway (today's was two football game tickets for any Florida football team with a night's hotel stay) is always given after the awards, so I am forced to sit there and be hot, sweaty, and miserable.  

People waiting for the grand prize giveaway.  I'm sure the majority are only waiting for that and don't really care that the top male finisher completed the 5K in 14 minutes. 

I didn't win the grand prize, or any of the lesser grand prizes, so I picked up one of these for my drive home.

Well deserved, in my opinion.

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Three Things Thursday

I've seen several other people doing these Three Things Thursday posts where they write about 3 things, related or not, that are on their minds.

So here we go!

1.  I haven't run since last Thursday.  Friday was a rest day, and it was followed by a busy weekend, so had no time to run.  Then every night this week, I have been sleeping horribly, probably due to sleeping on the awesome king size bed with fluffy pillows and a luxurious duvet cover at my favorite resort over the weekend.  Coming home to our queen sized uncomfortable bed with flat pillows and scratchy sheets/blankets was just miserable.  We really need to get a king size bed and splurge on quality linens, but with a wedding in 3 and a half months, all that is just not in the budget right now.

2.  Relating to number one, since I haven't run since Thursday, I went out last night.  I was going to run outside like I usually do but instead found myself walking over to the gym (a 4 minute walk, it's right next door, so not anything extravagant) and decided to hit the treadmill.  I previously posted my disdain for running on the treadmill but for some reason that was what called me.  I was going to attempt Week 7 Day 3 of C25K (25 minutes of straight running) but after the first 5 minutes of jogging, my heel was hurting badly from my plantar fasciitis, and my right thigh was hurting, I have no idea why.  Just felt like cramping.  So I thought maybe I'd walk 5 minutes, then run 5 minutes, walk 5 minutes, and so on.  So I walked the 5 minutes, and started to run again and could only make it through 3 minutes.  I just hate the treadmill!  It feels like so much more of a workout than running outside.  Plus there are just SO many distractions at the gym - the TVs, the people, the machine with flashing red numbers glaring at me.  It just makes it a very miserable experience for me.  So what I wound up doing was 2 minutes walking at 3.2, and then 2 minutes "power-walking" at 3.7-3.8.  I tried pushing up to 4.0 but that was way too fast for me to call it walking, I couldn't keep up.  And I had to hold on to the rails to keep up with walking at 3.8.  I really need to pick up the pace for this half marathon.  Somehow.  So I did walking/power-walking for the entire 5K and finished in about 55 minutes.  When doing the 5K outside, it takes me 57-58 minutes, so I was a little faster at power-walking than I am at jogging.  I just had to hold on.  Definitely some room for improvement there, not sure how I will go about that.

3.  My 30th birthday is next week.  I am going to buy myself a SPIBelt.  I think it will really help with my running outside.  Right now I keep stuff in my pockets - my ID, my phone, my keys, and it would be nice to have them all NOT in my pockets weighing me down, bouncing up and down, and being all bulky.  Plus I want to hang my sweat towel (gross I know but I HATE having sweat on my face, so I wipe it a lot) around the belt so I don't have to hold it until I need it.  I also might get this handheld water bottle which seems like it will be a little easier to carry than just carrying a regular water bottle like I've been doing.

OK, that's my three things. :D

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Bondi Band Review

Today was Week 6, Day 2 of Couch 2 5K.  Ten minutes of running, 3 minutes of walking, and 10 more minutes of running.

I got my Bondi Bands in the mail yesterday so I decided to try one out during this morning's run.  Unfortunately, I am not impressed yet.  I'm thinking it might be because I was wearing my sunglasses so they were causing the sweat in my eyes.  But people made the Bondi Bands sound magical like they would prevent any sweat from appearing on the top half of my face.  I'm just not sure how that could work unless it was sweat from my hair/forehead dripping down into my eyes.  But I still had eye sweat and it was still annoying.  However, the Bondi Band is much more comfortable than the regular headband I usually wear, even though Anton, my lovely fiance, told me it looked like I was wearing underwear on my head.  .....  yeah.

So I think I'll give it another try on Thursday when I go for my next run and not wear sunglasses and see if anything's different.  Regardless of the sweat in my eyes, they are cute, and do a REALLY great job of keeping my hair up off my neck and out of my face, so I'll continue using them for that reason.  I'm just not completely sold on the whole "no sweat" thing yet.  I still had to carry my hand towel and continuously wipe my entire face.

Anyway, Week 6, Day 2 was a success and I am still impressed with how much my endurance has improved since I first started this.  I haven't run since last Thursday and I picked right back up on it today without an issue. Yay!

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Bondi Bands!

I just ordered 5 Bondi Bands. (website)

I've read nothing but amazing things about them.  They are basically headbands to wear while running/exercising to wick sweat away from the forehead and keep sweat out of the eyes.  This is something I definitely have a problem with and I found a coupon code for $15 off an order of $40 or more, and the bands are $8 each so that's at least an order of 5.  (They also have a Buy 3 Get One Free coupon code, but for $1 more in the end, I get one more Bondi Band. Yay!)

I ordered a chocolate colored one, an off white colored one, a purple colored one, a black one with a gold tiara on the front (for the Disney Princess half marathon!) and a black one with glow in the dark ink that says "Slow, it's the new fast!"

I can't wait to get them and use them!

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Firecracker 5K Race Photo - 07/04/2011

Professional pictures are in!

SOMEONE looks hot/sweaty/tired/miserable. lol!

Monday, July 4, 2011

Firecracker 5K Race Report - 07/04/2011

So my first race report.  Not really sure what to put here so I guess I'll just ramble as usual. :)

Today's 5K began at the Liberty Bell Museum in Melbourne, FL.

I met Shannon (an old high school friend) at 6:15am and we carpooled over to the event.  The 5K was to begin at 7:15, so when we got there we had a few minutes to wander around, pick up her packet, use the facilities, etc, before the race began.

Speaking of facilities, this was the line for the port-o-potties.  Not awesome.

So after that, we headed over to the start line. I tried to take a picture of us....

and then a nice lady nearby offered to take one for us....

Some guy sang the Star Spangled Banner into a megaphone, the Liberty Bell was rung, and the race begin.  We were in the "Healthy Walkers Pace" section so I assumed Shannon would start off walking with me, but nope, she took off!  I then made a rookie mistake and also started jogging after barely having crossed the start line!  I reached the 1-Mile marker at 15:14 so I was excited to be ahead of my usual 17-18 minute pace.  

Unfortunately, Mile 2 was brutal! I had used up way too much energy during the first mile.  Somehow I managed to push myself, even full on RUN for 10 second spurts at a time.  I reached the next mile marker at 31:45... not too bad!  

Mile 3 was my worst mile.  I was exhausted, my legs hurt, I couldn't fully catch my breath, and I walked most of it.   There was another bigger girl that I was kind of on an even pace with most of the time.. she was power walking the whole time with a friend, so I'd jog to get a little ahead of them, and when they caught up to me, I'd jog again.  But on Mile 3, I had nothing left in me.  They passed me and I just couldn't push anymore.  So that was discouraging but I got over it, I was doing the best I could. :)

I had it set in my head that I wanted to be "running" when I crossed the finish line, so when I rounded the last turn and the Finish line was in sight, I upped my speed.  As I got closer and people were cheering and clapping (including Shannon!), I picked up my speed even more and used every last bit of energy I had left.  I saw 50 minutes and some seconds on the time clock, but I didn't have enough energy to even be happy or care at all about that time. lol

When I finished, all I could say was "waterrrr.... I need waterrrr!"  They had ONE water stop during the whole course, a little after Mile 1 marker.  If they had 1 more stop after the Mile 2 marker, or even some Gatorade, I think I would've had a little more oomph left.  I was having a hard time breathing, but I got some water and Gatorade and sat down for a few minutes.

We are exhausted but happy it's over!

Then we went to see what the food options were.... there really WASN'T any options which kind of sucked.  All they had was this banana nut bread - I'm not a fan of nuts, but I needed something in my stomach so I ate it.  BUT they had the most delicious and refreshing orange slices!  I never really knew how delicious they could be until I was worn out and needed something cold and juicy.  Shannon and I ate a ton of orange slices.  Definitely the highlight.  

The nut bread.  We ate the orange slices before I could take a pic. lol

So after eating and relaxing for a few minutes, we checked the official times that were posted.  My time (and new personal record and time to beat) was 50 minutes and 9 seconds!  During my C25K training, the fastest I have been able to finish 3.1 miles was always between 57-58 minutes, so this was definitely a record for me!  

So now, I have a simple goal at the next 5K - finish in less than 50 minutes.  I learned what I did well and what I did not so well, so I'm already looking forward to the next race.  Yay!

Saturday, July 2, 2011

So I'm starting a blog.  Yay.  Mostly to capture my experiences while (mainly) training and preparing for a half marathon in February 2012, but we'll see where it goes from there.

I signed up for this 50 Miles in July challenge.  It's supposed to be RUNNING 50 miles in July, but realistically, that is next to impossible at my size.  So my goal is to run/jog/walk/MOVE 50 miles in July.  That's 50 set miles, not including walking around the mall or work or anything like that.  Fifty miles of dedicated exercise.  We're on Day 2 and I've done 5 miles so far.  

That being said, I want to write about my experience at the gym this moring.  It sucked.  First of all, when I've been doing my Couch 2 5K training, I am running outside.  (Disclaimer:  whenever I say "run" or "running", I really mean "jog" or "jogging" but running just flows better and to be honest, sounds cooler. :D)  Back on topic, I usually wear a men's sleeveless Tshirt... not a tank top, just a tshirt with no sleeves.  The arm holes are big so I get some air into my midsection.  It's cotton, so I sweat a helluva lot, but somehow, it works.  I also usually wear mesh exercise shorts.

This morning while getting ready for the gym, I decided to try wearing some old black cotton shorts.  WTF was I thinking?!  I also wore a different shirt than I usually do... a somewhat tighter one, with sleeves.  Now, I have NEVER liked running on a treadmill (always preferred outside), so why would I wear worse clothing to do something that I already am miserable doing?  Needless to say, I set the treadmill on a 5K loop setting, at about 1.5 miles in, I started feeling faint and just overheated.  I was extremely sweaty, moreso than usual, and I felt so constrained in my clothes.  Because of the aforementioned 50 Mile challenge, I really wanted to push to 2 miles so I did, and then I stopped.  I was somewhat disappointed in myself for not completing the 3.1 miles, but I just physically couldn't.

I have several other issues with running at the gym:
1)  Too many people around, some people are talkers, and they just won't shut up!  It's hard for me to focus, concentrate, and get into my running zone with so many distractions, even with my music turned up.
2)  I get competitive and then discouraged when I'm not as fast as someone else who is on the machine next to me.  I should look at it as a challenge and something to use to push myself further, but it just doesn't work that way.  I know at this point I can't physically run at 6.0 or higher on the treadmill so I get discouraged that the fastest I can comfortably jog for a long period of time is 4.2.
3)  I hate the treadmill because I feel like I'm not GOING anywhere.  I'm running in place which gets BORING.  I also hate it because I feel dizzy when I get off of it.  I also hate it because those numbers on the screen are staring back at me and they are discouraging but the best I can do.  I could cover them but then I'd be covering the fan and trust me, I NEED THAT FAN.

So anyway, today's experience at the gym was unpleasant to say the least.  I'm going to have to, somehow, get my 50 miles in while running outside.  Might have to add some side roads to my usual 3.1 mile route that I do for C25K just to get some more distance in.  Not sure yet.  But I WILL succeed at this challenge.