A Tale of Two Races

Phew…what a weekend!  Have you ever had a weekend that was both relaxing and exhausting or fun and miserable?  Well, that was this weekend for me.  It all started with a nice 5 mile run on the treadmill and a trip to Joliet after work to get my hair done, which always makes me feel better.  That is until I got a text message from my husband saying that, thanks to a severe thunderstorm that rolled through, we were without power for the second time this summer.  Of course, it had to be one of the hotter days we’ve seen this summer.  Lucky for us, my in-laws live close by and were kind enough to offer us an air conditioned room for the night!   After checking the estimated restore time all night, I decided I would have to get up early to bring the pug to Camp Bow Wow (so she didn’t overheat) before heading out to have some fun at the Hell Run.  I was so relieved when I got a text from ComEd at 1am saying the power was expected to be restored by 4:30am…hooray, I get to sleep in on a Saturday for once!  I got home around 9am (yes, 8:30am is sleeping in for me these days) and had plenty of time to change into my team uniform, eat a little something and head out for the…

Hell Run (Hawthorne Race Course) = Fun!

As I was grabbing my bag to head out the door, I heard a clap of thunder.  Shoot.  I pulled up the radar hoping for a small cell and was happy to see that it was small and seemed to be moving quickly.  As soon as I hit the road, it started to sprinkle and by the time I got most of the way there, it was a torrential downpour.  I hated opening my car window to pay for parking when I arrived ($10, by the way), but then had to laugh at myself…really, I didn’t want to get wet from the rain, but I was going to be jumping into giant mud puddles in an hour?!  I can be really blond sometimes!  After parking my car, I met up with my friends and teammates so we could get our bibs and swag.  Unfortunately, due to lightening in the area, we were directed to take shelter in the Hawthorne grand stand building.  Thankfully, it was nice and warm inside so we didn’t freeze from being drenched head to toe.

Fast forward an hour and a half (apparently that small cell kept growing and growing)…we are still sitting and waiting for the event to be cleared to start.  The race volunteers and directors were all really great.  They provided an update every 15 minutes or so and were very apologetic.  Some participants were throwing a fit and demanding their money back…a lot got tired of waiting and just left.  Obviously, the race directors cannot control the weather, I will never understand why people demand their money back when they are the ones giving up on an event.  Anyway, instead of complaining or giving up, we decided to make the most of the situation by enjoying some conversation and time spent together.  I have to admit, I did get a little bored for a minute and felt compelled to entertain my friends with this scene:

Just call me Super Bather!

Just call me Super Bather!

Finally, after about 2 hours or more of waiting, the event was cleared to begin.  The lines for bib pick-up were surprisingly short and we were ready to go in no time.  Unfortunately, because the rain was so intense, the race directors and volunteers had to re-set-up the swag area and gear check on the pavement, since the infield was so wet and muddy (bonus mud!), so we played the waiting game for a little while longer.  After all of the volunteers were back in place and the course was cleared the race went off in two waves of mud filled fun.  Apparently the course sustained some damage during the severe thunderstorm the night before, but only one obstacle was rendered unsafe – the low crawl in a tunnel.  I wasn’t sad about not getting to do that one at all!  We had a great time and got pretty muddy (more pictures to come soon).  I was happy that I was able to complete all of the obstacles, despite the loss of gripping power in my right hand due to a broken pinky earlier this year that didn’t heal properly.

Though not the most challenging of the obstacle races, overall, this race was a fun one.  This was my second year doing this race and not much changed from the previous year.  Everything was pretty much the same, right down to the t-shirt, cape (fun!) and medal.  The obstacles consisted of several mud pits, barbed wire low crawls, wall climbs, a tire maze, and of course in typical obstacle race fashion, a fire leap at the end.   The obstacles were in the same exact locations as the previous year so I knew what to expect next, there were no surprises which took a little of the fun and excitement out of it for me.  The only obstacle that was missing from the previous year was “heavy metal” (scrap cars you climb over).  They appeared to have replaced “heavy metal” with an additional very lame fire obstacle.  There were flaming logs on top of metal drums spaced very far apart.  You could easily have walked right between them, so to make it more interesting, we weaved our way through them.

Like I said, this isn’t the most challenging of obstacle races, but if you are looking for fun more than a challenge, this race is for you.  I will likely do the race again next year, but I hope to see a bit of a change up in obstacles.  It would also be nice if the medals or at least the t-shirts were a different design next year.  I now have two sets of the exact same medal, t-shirt and cape…adding a year designation would be a nice touch.



After a very long shower, I spent the rest of my Saturday enjoying conversation and delicious food at my neighbors annual pulled pork party.  Have I mentioned how lucky I am to live on a block with such awesome neighbors?!  Sunday I spent the day being lazy, lounging around the house and watching a marathon of Breaking Bad on Netflix, my husband’s new obsession.  I managed to get the laundry done in between episodes and mainly hid from the heat and humidity outside.  Of course, in preparation for my next race, I ventured out for my usual pre-race carbo-load meal of Wisconsin Mac & Cheese from Noodles & Co.  I went to bed pretty early, in anticipation of my next half-marathon, the…

Oak Brook Half-Marathon (aka the REAL Hell Run)

I woke up at 5am on Monday hopeful that I would have a good race.  The weather was forecast to be much cooler than it had been in the last two weeks, so I hoped that I could finally have a good half marathon.  I picked up my packet on Thursday after work (it was a breeze…I was in and out in 5 minutes and most of that time was spent talking to a run club member who was volunteering) and I had gathered my gear, bib, goo, etc. the night before so I was thankful for the extra few minutes of sleep that afforded me.  The race also offered day of packet pick-up, which was nice, but I feel so much more “prepared” for a race when I have everything ahead of time.  Anyway, I made my way out to Oak Brook, which was a breeze at 5:45am on a holiday.  I think it took me a grand total of 20 minutes, the majority of the time was spent getting through Oak Park to the Ike.  I work very close to the start of the race, which was part of the appeal.  Since I’m familiar with the area and have run on part of the course before, I thought I knew what to expect.  Oh boy was I wrong.  I’m telling you, half marathons are my kryptonite.  I have yet to have a “good” one, but that is more my problem, than a reflection of the race itself.  The race was very well organized and the course was beautiful, I just can’t seem to run a half marathon without feeling like total crap.  Instead of bashing this race because my failures, I will take a step back and review it objectively before getting into why I failed.  Here is the breakdown:


After learning about the race last year (I was training for a 10K then), I was on the fence about this race mainly because of the time of year and Chicago’s fickle weather.  Plus, I wasn’t sure if I wanted to spend $65 to run a half marathon (since they have historically been my worst races), but a run club friend sealed the deal for me when she passed along a discount code.  Imagine my surprise when I went to register and was able to use an additional CARA discount code!  All said and done, the race was very reasonable at $53.18 (with taxes and fees).

What I Got for the Money:

For a mere $53.18 I got a nice gender specific technical shirt, a bag full of goodies (that included a tennis ball, Chapstick and several flyers for future races), free parking, a well planned and executed chip timed race (B-Tag), a beautiful and challenging course, great on-course support (water, Gatorade and Energy Gels), super nice and energetic volunteers, a medal at the finish and a nice finish line festival.


Packet Pick-Up:

As I said above, packet pick-up was a breeze for those who chose to pick-up ahead of time.  Day of packet pick-up was offered and the upon arriving to the race site 45 minutes prior to race start, there did not appear to be a line at all.


The course was absolutely beautiful and quite a challenge for those of us not used to running hills.  Having run part of this course before, I was aware that there would be a few rolling hills, but I was not prepared for the “mountains” that I met on Spring Road and in the Fullersburg Woods Forest Preserve (miles 6 through 10).  I firmly believe that the combination of these hills and the rainforest like humidity that I met in the forest preserve were my downfall.  More on that later though.  The course was a good combination of street, paved bike path/sidewalk and crushed limestone.  There was also a good balance of sun and shade, which is always nice.  The scenery was mostly forest preserve complete with nice views of Salt Creek, but there was a nice mix of residential neighborhood and the McDonald’s Hamburger University campus to break it up a bit too.

Overall Opinion:

Overall, this was a great race.  It was well organized and had a lot to offer racers of every ability.  That being said, I will never, ever run this race again…even if I were given a free entry!  I know it seems silly to give a race a positive review and in the next breath say that I will never run it again, but you have to understand just how much of an epic failure this race was for me (again, totally my problem and not the race’s fault at all).

Growing up and running in upstate NY, I have run my fair share of hills (the type of hills even your car has trouble getting to the top of), but I’m not 16 anymore and I haven’t lived (or run) those hills in a VERY long time.  I’m weak and hills can make my already 1/2 or 1/4 full tank drop below “E”.  Add in rainforest like humidity (you know, the kind where you can actually see the moisture rolling off the roofs of the pavilions in the woods, or heck, even the breath of the runners in front of you) a forgotten inhaler and a calorie deficit (yeah, I thought I was a genius and was trying to lose weight by cutting 750-1000 calories a day – not smart when you’re training for a marathon…duh) and you have a recipe for disaster.  After suffering a minor humidity induced asthma attack somewhere around mile marker 7 or 8, I was more than ready to give up and take my very first DNF.  Thank goodness for my run club friend, Ann, who ran the race with me (I use “ran” loosely, as I had to walk a lot for the last half of the race).  Annie, you got me through this race, as painfully slow as it was.  I would not have finished without your encouragement.  Thank you so much for sticking with me!!!  For anyone unfortunate enough to be running near me, I sincerely apologize for the many F-bombs that I’m sure slipped out of my mouth in those hilly mountainous woods.

Here are my stats for the race, and a picture of the medal I so do not deserve:

Capture OBM

Here’s to hoping the marathon goes better.  After this disaster of a race, I’m not feeling too confident though.  I’m really nervous to see how my 18 and 20 mile runs go too.  I know I can’t quit this close to the finish line (and I won’t), but I’m feeling incredibly unprepared.  The thought that the big day is only 37 days away sends me into a panic attack.  Fingers crossed that my 18 miler goes well this weekend and I’m able to keep negative Nancy in my head at bay!


Coming out of hibernation…

Oh hi, remember me?!  No, marathon training hasn’t killed me, but the summer heat just might (more on that later)!  Seriously though, I have been super duper busy these last few (almost three…oops!) weeks and haven’t been able to find much free time for myself, let alone time to sit in front of a computer and attempt to be witty.  🙂

So what have I been up to?  Oh, you know, just fighting the lovely Chicago traffic five days a week (1 hour each way), working my tail off at the office, finishing up those darn roman shades for my kitchen, and of course, running!  The good news is, the roman shades are done and have been installed.  I’m not particularly proud of them, but for my first sewing project since Home-Ec class in middle school, I’d say they came out alright.  What do you think?

roman shades

Please excuse my running bag sitting on the counter!

OK – let’s get down to business.  Here is a recap of how my training has been going:

Sunday (7/7/13) – Long Run (9 Miles):

In an effort to get my longs runs in before the heat of the day, I have been getting up at 5am to eat before heading out at 6am.  It was really hard to get up because I was up late, hanging out with our neighbors around the fire pit in our backyard.  When the alarm went off I groaned and crawled out of bed, choked down a CLIF Bar, took a few sips of my diet coke and promptly dozed off on the couch while I waited for my food to digest.  Luckily, I never got into a deep sleep and was able to force myself out the door a little after 6am.  The first three miles of the run felt great.  I didn’t feel too winded and my legs felt strong.  The sun was out but my route was pretty shaded up to this point.  I started to heat up a bit when I lost most of my shade into mile 4 and I felt my energy take a leap off a tall cliff.  At mile 4.5 I stopped to walk as I ate my energy gel and drink some water.  Tired of the same old scenery, I decided to try a new route today and crossed over into River Forest for the last half of my run, knowing I would be able to find more shade on it’s densely tree lined streets.  Feeling low energy, I began to think about new strategies for completing the run.  I remembered how easy it was to run with my Beginning Running buddy our first week together and decided to give our interval plan a shot.  I completed the last half of the run by alternating .50 mile running at a “faster” pace and walking 1 minute.  I was so happy when my watch beeped at 9 miles, not because I was exhausted (the intervals definitely helped me finish strong), but because I forgot to Body Glide up and that same spot in my armpit felt like someone was stabbing me every time I swung my arm.  I promise, I will NEVER forget Body Glide again before a long run!  Here are my stats for the run (slow to some standards, but within my long run training pace of 10:34-11:46).


Monday (7/8/13) – Rest Day:

After 9 miles on Sunday, my legs were a bit tired and I was longing for a rest day.  Typically, Monday’s are a rest day in the Hal Higdon Novice 1 training plan I am using, but because I’m trying to work in some speed work on Wednesday’s to improve my 5K times, I have shifted my normal Tuesday night workout to Monday, Wednesday night to Tuesday and then fall back on schedule for my Thursday night and Saturday or Sunday long run.  Luckily, I had an appointment after work and I didn’t get home until late so there wasn’t much time to get in a run before it got too dark/late.  I attempted to get in a quick three miler, but was unmotivated, tired and sore so I called it quits after one mile and went home to relax on the couch with my hubby.  I must have been pretty tired because 10 minutes later, I was catching flies on the couch.  Here are the stats for that run:


Tuesday (7/9/13) – 3 Miler:

Summer has really kicked into high gear in Chicago and this day was no exception.  Even though it was hot and steamy (~82 degrees with 74% humidity), I knew I had to get out there and complete my training run, especially after Monday’s failed attempt.  The run went reasonably well for the first two miles, but I crashed and burned on mile three.  I don’t think nutrition or hydration was the reason for my crash, I really think it had everything to do with the heat and humidity.  On hot and humid day’s like this I really struggle to not overheat when I’m running.  Walking is fine, but I often feel dizzy, sick to my stomach or like my face/head is going to explode when I’m running.  At this point, I’m really not sure how to overcome this, other than doing my training runs on the dreaded treadmill if it’s too hot/humid out.  How do you train when the mercury soars and the humidity is suffocating?


Wednesday (7/10/13) – Speed Work:

Holy moly was speed work hard this day!  I was thankful that the temperature and humidity had eased a bit and there was a nice breeze to help cool things off a bit.  After riding my bike to the track, I jogged a mile to stay warm and continued to jog as the rest of the group did their drills.  I’m still terrified that any lateral drills will bring back that horrible leg pain I was working through a few weeks ago.  All told, my warm-up consisted of a 2 mile bike ride and 1.5 miles of jogging.  After the warm-up, stretching and 4 stiders, my legs felt loose and strong…I was ready to conquer the workout!  The plan was to do 12 x 400’s at 5K pace with a 100 meter jog rest in between and a longer rest after a set of 4.  Remembering that I tend to go out way too fast, I kept my first set right around an 8:47/mile pace (2:05 ish for each 400).  They say consistency is key, and I was right on all the way through the second set.  I was really starting to struggle in the last two of the second set though, so I decided to sit out the first 400 of the third set.  The extra break did me a world of good though and with a little encouragement from “Coach” I successfully ran three more 400’s at 2:00 or under!  It felt good to know that I could do it and I’m looking forward to getting stronger and stronger…hopefully I will see 1:30’s or 1:40’s by the end of the program!  After the workout I cooled down with another 3/4 mile jog and a quick barefoot lap on the turf.  It was slow going riding my bike home since my legs were feeling pretty worn out, but I tried to push it so I could make it home before it got too dark (I didn’t have lights for my bike yet).  I made it home with plenty of daylight to spare though!

Thursday (7/11/13) – Another 3 Miler:

Thursday is the day I help pace for the CARA Beginning Running program.  This was our first day back after a two week hiatus due to a nasty thunderstorm and the 4th of July holiday, so I was excited to get back into the swing of things.  Today, my 5K buddy and I were scheduled to run 3 consecutive miles without any rest breaks.  I didn’t have any doubt that my buddy could do it though.  Like I have said before, she is a much better runner than she realizes and she definitely have the lung capacity to get her through easily.  After a bit of dynamic stretching, we started out on our route and before we knew it the three miles was up!  The weather was really nice, a little on the humid side, but not too hot for a change.  Here are our stats for the run:


Saturday (7/13/13) – Long (ish) Run and Post Run Yoga:

After a rest day on Friday, I was feeling prepared and excited to meet my run club friend for a quick run before she introduced me to my new favorite post run activity…yoga!  We met at 7am, which would normally be early enough to beat the heat of the day, but the humidity was up and I decided to wear running capri’s because, well, nobody wants to see me doing yoga in anything but pants…take my word for it.  Not thinking ahead and BRINGING a pair of capri’s to change into was my downfall.  The first mile or so was fine, we even got to laugh when a random car drove by blasting NKOTB’s “Hangin’ Tough” (seriously though, it was crazy loud and his windows were wide open), but by mile three I was dying.  You know that feeling you get when you’re wearing a wet bikini or swim shorts outside of the water on a hot day – damp, sticky and just gross – yeah, that was me.  I never wanted to shower so badly in all of my life.  I made it through the bulk of the run, grateful for every stoplight break, but had to take a walk break for a bit around the five mile marker – I was just too hot and my breathing was all off.  We finished the run strong though and made our way to yoga class.

Yoga was AMAZING…it felt so good to stretch my tired/sore muscles after an almost 6 mile run.  I really didn’t want the class to end.  I’m totally hooked and can’t wait to go back.  I’m even thinking about getting up even earlier on Saturday’s to get my scheduled long runs in and head over to yoga to stretch it out afterward.  Here are my stats for the pre yoga run:


Sunday (7/14/13) – Long Run – For Real This Time (10 Miles)!

My schedule says that I was supposed to get 10 miles in for my long run on Saturday, but after overheating before yoga and doing all that work stretching at yoga, I just wanted to shower and didn’t want to get all tensed up and sweaty trying to get in another 4.5 quick miles.  Not wanting to cut my long run short, I decided I would get up early on Sunday to get a full 10 continuous miles in…no breaks.  To my disappointment, the weather was just as hot and humid as Saturday.  Obviously, I didn’t make the capri mistake again, but I still struggled through this run.  This time around, I stuck to my new long run interval routine of running .5 mile, walking for 1 minute and so on.  It was so hot and humid I seemed to be going through water quickly and stopped to refill my hand-held bottle three times.  I drank EVERY last drop of those four (12 oz.) bottles.  I have to say that though the intervals made the run a lot easier, they got to be very monotonous and I found myself getting discouraged by the number of intervals left on my Garmin screen, allowing the Negative Nancy in my mind to push the “I just want to give up” button.  I’m happy to report that I did not give up, but I have to confess, I took full advantage of the water refill stops!  Here are my stats for the run:


Monday (7/15/13) – Easy 3 Miler:

After my 10 miler the day before I was really wanting a rest day, but I promised some run club buds that I would do (at least part) of the club Monday night run.  My hammies were sore and it was so HOT out (this was the start of our little heat wave last week…I think it was in the upper 80’s this day), but I’m glad I convinced myself to go.  I had a nice quick run and some good conversations with my friends.  I felt pretty good, but was never so happy to see my street coming up.  I was drenched in sweat and really wanted a swig of Gatorade.  After I ditched off from the group, I walked the half block to my house, made myself a nice cold glass of Gatorade and dizzily sat down to drink it.  After a few minutes I had my husband take me back to The Foot so I could pick-up my car.  I felt really silly and almost like I cheated!  Anyway, here are my stats for that run:


Tuesday (7/16/13) – Midweek Long Run (5 Miles):

This day was absolutely, positively the WORST running day of my life.  My Beginning Running buddy wasn’t going to be able to make it to our usual Thursday night run (which turned out to be canceled anyway due to the extreme heat), but we agreed to meet so I could help her get in her scheduled 3.5 miles.  I left work and should have known this run would end up in failure due to the extreme heat and humidity.  We agreed to meet at 6:30pm and since I had to get 5 miles in for my training I decided I would run to our meet up location (about 1.5 miles) and would then run home.  Because traffic was pretty heavy, I had to put a hustle on my run to our meet up location, which wasn’t easy in the heat/humidity.  By the time I got to the OPRF track (our meet up location), I thought I was going to die of heat stroke and wasn’t surprised when I looked up at the billboard that indicated it was STILL 91 degrees at 6:30pm!  After a quick break so I could catch my breath, we were off, choosing to try out a new route.  After about a mile we stopped for a traffic light and I started to feel queasy and light headed.  I was so embarrassed that I was the “teacher” and I had to walk…some role model I am!  We walked for a block or two and tried it again.  Another mile down and guess what, I had to walk again…my face felt like it was going to pop it was so hot.  This time we walked quite a bit further (about a half mile) before the sun retreated behind the clouds and the air seemed to cool off quite a bit.  We finished the run strong and I walked home with my tail between my legs, wishing I had brought some cash with me so I could stop and get an ice slushie to cool me off!  After my walk of shame I gulped down some ice cold water, took a cold shower and started to second guess myself and my ability to even finish a marathon.  Determined to finish, I decided that, as much as I hate them, I would do my training runs on a treadmill if the weather was above 90 degrees or excessively humid again.  Here are my stats for this horrible, horrible run that I will now repress any memory of:


Thursday (7/18/13) – 3 Miler:

I thought Tuesday was hot until Thursday rolled around with it’s 96 degrees and oppressive humidity.  I walked into the underground parking garage at work and it was like walking into a wall.  I was glad I planned ahead and brought my workout gear so I could run on the treadmill in the building’s gym.  I also decided to try out those new Brooks sneaks I told you about awhile ago.  Yes, they have stayed in my closet that long…I told you, I felt like I was cheating on my old trusty Saucony’s!  Anyway, I changed into my workout gear and hated the shoes immediately…they felt too small, like if I ran any more than 3 miles in them I would lose my big toenail for sure.  Having no other shoe options with me, I decided to give them a shot.  I turned on the news, positioned the oscillating fan for optimal cooling and began my run.  I was pleasantly surprised, the run was really easy and I felt really good.  I ran 3 miles at sub 10-minute pace and didn’t even feel winded.  Weird.  I’ve been struggling so much while running outside lately, I have to wonder if it really is just the heat and humidity slowing me down.  I have only run on a treadmill once before and I hated every seems-like-an-eternity minute of it, but that could be because I was used to running in the cold winter temps (I was running inside because it was in the negatives with wind chill that day and I didn’t feel like getting frostbite!) and the inside temperature was obviously much warmer.  I haven’t really made any adjustments to my food consumption, and the only change has been of the meteorological variety…could it be that I’m really that sensitive to the weather?  If so, how to I overcome that obstacle?!  It’s not like I can train solely on a treadmill in a climate controlled environment, or run a marathon on a treadmill for that matter (OMG…I would want to gouge my eyes out from the boredom!).  One thing is for sure, I’m really looking forward to the Fall!

Sunday (7/21/13) – Long Run (7 Miles):

It was another warm and muggy morning, but much cooler than it has been for this long run.  Since it was a step down week, I only had to log a 7 miler for my long run, but after a late night celebrating a friend’s birthday downtown, I found it hard to get out of bed and out the door by my goal time of 6am.  Instead, I took my time waking up and eating and headed out at 7:30am.  I stuck to my long run interval plan for this run and felt pretty good throughout the whole 7 miles.  I have been starting to pay attention to my energy levels on long runs in an attempt to nail down the perfect “refuel” timing to head off any bonk that might occur.  After talking with my run club bud, Jess, last weekend, I realized that my stores might deplete faster than the “normal” person since I seem to run out of gas somewhere between 4 and 4.5 miles.  To head this off, I decided that I would eat my gel at mile 3.5 and see how it went from there.  Holy amazing…it worked!  I felt great the entire run and didn’t see the “Average Pace” time on my Garmin sliding up like I usually do.  I was finally able to keep a nice, steady pace throughout the entire run.  Also, I think this is the first long run that I have ever done where I didn’t totally bonk out and suffer through the back half crawling along at a snails pace.  My only mistake is that I didn’t plan out my route very well, changing direction on a whim instead, leading me to finish the run about a mile and a half away from my house.  Ooops!  At least I got a nice cool down walk in!  Here are my stats for the run:


Monday (7/22/13) – 3 Miler:

Monday was another hot day (89 degrees), but much less humid, which was nice.  Since I didn’t bring my workout clothes with me, I contemplated doing 3 miles on the elliptical machine I have at home.  After some convincing from my husband I sucked it up, changed out of my work clothes and complained my way out the door.  Since I hated that pair of Brooks so much, I tried to return them over the weekend, but I was only allowed to exchange them for another pair of shoes.  The only color Saucony Guide 6’s they had in stock was black…no thanks, it’s hot enough…so I let them talk me into a different pair of Brooks.  This time I ended up with a full size larger than my street size (8.5 vs. 7.5) and the Glycerin’s instead of the Adrenaline’s.  I thought I might as well get the test run over with so I decided to test them on this run.  I absolutely hated them the first mile…surprise, surprise – they felt too big!  I’m really starting to feel like Goldilocks now.  By the end of mile 2 I was getting used to them, but by mile 3 I just wanted to be done with the run and in an air-conditioned room somewhere.  The run went relatively well, considering the heat and new shoe learning curve, I was happy to see a more “normal” pace.  I plan to give the Glycerin’s another shot on Thursday this week.  Here are my stats for the run:


Wednesday (7/24/13) – Midweek Long Run (6 Miles):

FINALLY!  The hot weather has broken…today was an absolutely GORGEOUS day!  Low humidity and much, much cooler temps (high of only 76 today!) made for a lovely sunroof open, windows down drive to work this morning.  I was anxious to get out of work and get my midweek long run in today, but after a slice of Chocolate Moose Cake from Gibsons (because I have absolutely no willpower) I wasn’t so sure how the run was going to go.  My stomach was rebelling before I even started to run so I was afraid the jostling would only make it worse.  By the time I got home, the brick in my stomach started to subside and just to be safe, I took my sweet time gearing up and planning out my route (so I wouldn’t end up a mile or more away from home at the end of the run again!).  After a short warm up walk I was ready to go…and go I did!  The weather was amazing and I found it easy to breath even though I was maintaining a sub-10 minute pace.  Thinking that the pace was too good to be true or last for the whole run, I decided I would continue to push as long as I could.  To my surprise, I finished the run feeling fast, strong and as though I had a lot of energy to spare.  This further proves my theory that weather severely affects my running speeds and leaves me hopeful for a nice crisp Fall day on October 13th (the big day).  Here are my stats for tonight’s run (I actually ran a 10K to see if I could beat my 10K PR race time from last year…blew it out of the water by 4 minutes!):