Flying Pig 2015

Flying Pig 2015

Sunday, October 15, 2017

Columbus Half Marathon

I stumbled upon some friends at the expo! [Dani, Marion, ME, Jackie, Jeanne]
Needless to say, I'm in a bit of a rough patch. LOL.  Oh man. I titled this blog "honest mother runner," so I suppose I need to do what I claim and spill my guts in these moments.
I was supposed to run the full today. A couple of weeks ago, my friend, Debbie, decided not to run and we were able to get the bib transferred to my name even though it was after the transfer date (THANK YOU COLUMBUS MARATHON!). I was so incredibly excited to run this race! I really needed a redemption Columbus race since I freaking bombed the 2012 marathon (5:03:??).
Here was my plan:
Amanda is the one who gave me the idea to try out this pace strategy. I ordered the pace band for the Columbus course based on a conservative start and negative split for a 3:36 goal time.
Going into the race, everyone was aware that the weather would likely not be ideal (it was about 70 degrees and high humidity). I definitely felt it from the start, but I didn't intend on letting it stop me. [insert eye roll]
Always a beautiful start at this race.
I saw most of my friends at the start and had the pleasure of hanging out with my church friend, Lindsey, who freaking killed her first marathon. So amazing.
Start line smiles! [ME, Lindsey]
I felt like a turtle at the beginning but still went out too fast [8:09]. I forced myself to slow down and stay true to my plan. I did a lot better after that with my next few miles [8:30, 8:13, 8:17, 8:09, 8:07].
I forget the exact mile Amanda met up with me, but she was waiting on the side of Broad Street until she saw me. We ran together until mile 7 or so. That's about when my body started feeling funky. I was definitely lightheaded at moments. I have no idea why! I have been drinking water like crazy all week/all morning/the whole race. Mile 7 was ten seconds slower than intended [8:35]. It was the end of this mile when shit hit the fan...pun intended.
I had to go to the bathroom BAD. I NEVER have to use the restroom during races. I felt so sick! As much as I hated the thought, I knew I'd have to stop at the next Port-a-pot...I just hoped I would make it there before crapping my shorts. I finally made it to a bathroom at 8.25 miles. Mile 8 was [8:44]. Eek.
After going to the bathroom, I felt awful. I was feeling lightheaded, nauseous, etc. WTF. I kept thinking "I can't quit another marathon...I just can't." I started walking and called my husband to tell him I felt like crap. He said all the right things in the moment, but I still didn't know if I wanted to actually stop at the half or continue to go for it. I then started texting my friend, Rachel, who was visiting from Louisville. She was going to be cheering me on after the half. I wasn't sure I would actually make it to that point. 
After texting her, I called Amanda. I knew she had her phone and would likely answer it. I wanted her to know I was struggling. After talking to all of my people and seeing some of my friends on the course, I decided I would stop at the half. This mile, with all of the decision making, was [12:11]. Amanda was about a mile ahead of me and decided to turn back around to join me. Now that's a good friend! LOL.
At this point, we just rolled with it and tried to enjoy it as much as we could. Personally, I was hating life. I walked A LOT. I kept apologizing to Amanda, but she said she didn't care. I was so happy that she didn't cuz neither did I...I was over it! UGH. Because we intervaled the next three miles, they were [10:39, 10:47, 10:10]. We just enjoyed the crowd, conversation, and all of my bitching.
Little did we know, we would experience some drama the last mile. Some time in mile 13, a gentleman collapsed in front of us. It was the scariest thing I've witnessed. It appeared that he was seizing. Other runners and spectators were performing CPR, calling 911, etc. Amanda ran to get the nearest police officer. Long story short, it took way too long for the appropriate people to address the situation. After finding an AED and performing more CPR, the man was revived. All I could do was pray for this man. When he started breathing again, Amanda and I headed towards the finish. Due to this fiasco, mile 13 was [14:09]. I'm not sure what others got for the mileage, but I am sure that my Garmin was probably over the distance due to the bathroom break and mile 13 drama.

My official time was:
I found out after the finish that I wasn't alone in my situation. A couple of my other friends made the same decision to stop at the half. It made me feel a little better that I wasn't making up my complaints. It also made me realize how hard core the marathoners were on this day. Brutal.
I've had a few hours to think over this situation. Just like with Erie, I'm not sad that I didn't finish the full. At least I had the option of the half. Not sure if this is technically a DNF! I'm just annoyed. I'm annoyed that I'm training so well and crap out on race day. I have no excuse for Erie. I honestly don't know what happened. My only logical explanation is that maybe I had a little virus. Today was different in that the weather was a huge factor in some of my symptoms. The pooping?! I have no idea what that was about.
I made the goal at the beginning of the year to run three marathons this year. I had two good ones in the spring, and have yet to finish one this fall. I am registered for Indy, and that will be my last chance. I have no choice but to finish that one. After that I'm taking a break from the marathon. I think it's something I just need to do. I LOVE training for them, but I feel like I've put this pressure of  BQing on myself that simply isn't necessary.
The truth is, I will be in the same age group for the next 4 years. I have plenty of time to make this happen. My goal after a BQ was to try to PR a half. I really feel I should not run a full in the spring so that I can focus on the half marathon. It will give me a mental break from my idea of a BQ and hopefully revive my excitement to attempt my ultimate goal of running in Boston. I know it's going to be SO HARD to stick to this because I LOVE marathon training, but I feel it's what I need to do.
I am so incredibly impressed by everyone who ran today. You marathoners in particular are freaking amazing. So, here I go again. Another three weeks of not knowing what the hell I should run followed by trying to actually finish a marathon. 
When race time comes, I don't need any sweet messages. I need you to tell me to suck it up and get my ass to the finish line. I'm serious.
Special shout out to my sweet friend, Rachel. She was one of my besties from PT school. She was in town for a conference this weekend. We were able to meet up for dinner Friday night and see each other throughout the weekend since I was downtown a lot. She made me this amazing sign that I didn't get to see while running since I stopped at the half. I'm honored she let me keep it!
Dinner at Bakersfield. [Rachel, ME]

This is special. "Lisa want some Pizza."

Sunday, October 8, 2017

BTTG: Week 4

Back To The Grind
September Mileage. Not my best or worst.
Sometimes the most unexpected comments make the most unexpected changes in your perspective. Outside of the whole Boston qualification drama, I've been trying to come up with a race strategy for the fall. The only thing I'm fairly certain I need to do is start a little slower than my actual goal race pace. My body needs that warm always has. I'm just so scared that I won't be able to make up for the time!! UGH. I know my body will feel better, so I just need to trust the process.
So, the thing that changed my perspective...
Amanda sent me a screenshot of a pacing strategy. There is this website,, that comes up with your marathon splits based on a few factors:
-Your goal time
-The marathon course you are running (my favorite part!! it considers elevation, etc.)
-Your start strategy (even pace, conservative, very conservative)
-Your pacing strategy (even effort, even pace, negative split, positive split)
You can even customize the size and color! It's definitely worth checking out.
Anyway, actually seeing the splits in front of my face opened my eyes even further. Seeing how they can vary rather than stressing about a stagnant 8:12-8:15...stressing if it was too far above or below that range. I immediately ordered a band based on my chosen strategies. It got me excited and a little less nervous.
  • 10/2: 4 miles, 9:28/mile; Bis/Tris/Legs, 30 minutes. I met up with my favorite Gahanna girls (Lisa B and Sarah K if you are confused) for another easy run. Lisa B caught us up on her health status (hospital one day, racing the next...wonder woman!) and we had a puma siting....or maybe just an orange cat...minor details.
  • 10/3: Chest/Back/Glut Med, 30 minutes. Running rest days are good.
    We had some pumpkin painting fun.
  • 10/4: 6.2 miles, 8:21/mile. Steady state run for me. I met up in NA again this week to help some friends with a tempo run. I ran the first half with Erin and Heather and finished the run solo. I wish I could have captured the gorgeous night sky on my camera. The moon was amazing this morning, and the sky was full of stars. I was so amazing!!
  • 10/5: 5.11 miles, 9:39/mile. Another easy run with my Gahanna crew. This morning, we went on a 5 mile tour of the Columbus Academy neighborhood. Minus Morse Road, I'm pretty sure we were never going downhill and rarely going flat!
    My friend posted this on IG, and it made me snort.
  • 10/6: 10 miles, 8:17/mile; Power Yoga, 1 hour. I'm typing this at the end of the day, and I'm fairly certain that I won't be able to move when I wake up (which sort of sucks because I am solo with the kids ALL DAY AND EVENING tomorrow)! No work meant sleeping in an extra hour, meeting Amanda at 6 a.m. for our run, and drinking coffee from a mug at home while the kiddos watched cartoons. After an hour of chilling at home, we went to the Y. The kids went to child watch while I took a yoga class. OMG. It was so tough. I'm not sure if it felt more tough because I ran just prior to it, or if it would have felt that hard anyway. I was freaking sweating like a hog, and my legs were burning like crazy! So awesome.
    So gorgeous after a sweaty run. [ME, Amanda]

    This actually happened to me in class. SMH.
  • 10/7: REST. The hubs was out of town for Bible quizzing, so I had to plan a day without running.
    James found this cool bug outside!
  • 10/8: 8.01 miles, 9:25/mile. The plan was 8 miles with the last mile at MP. I met up with some friends in Westerville for a new route. My marathon pace mile was too fast, but whatevs. I need to learn to rein it in before race day.
    Sunday Runday Funday crew. [ME, Elizabeth, Tina, Chris]
Another week down. I had an exciting day of tracking my friends who were running the Chicago Marathon. In one more week, a bunch of people will toe the line in Columbus!


    Wednesday, October 4, 2017

    Granville Maple Leaf 5k/10k

    What a great race! I'm a sucker for cheap races. For these short races, I don't need the medal. I think my requests aren't too much to ask for:
    1. A registration fee that doesn't break the bank.
    2. A course that is true to the distance that you are advertising.
    3. People who are excited to be there (whether you are a volunteer, spectator, or racer).
    4. Atypical swag (i.e. coffee mugs, maple syrup).
    5. Proceeds go to something meaningful.
    This race got a check mark for all five. It cost only $20 if you pre-registered online (5k or 10k); $15 for youth and only $5 more to register on race day. This included a great t-shirt and all of the other things in these pics (except the Army stuff and syrup...that was part of my prize):

    The course, per my Garmin, was 3.12 miles. I can't speak for the 10k, but they ran the 5k course x2, so I'm guessing it was close. I've never seen volunteers and race directors so excited on race day. They even got the kids at the school involved by having them make signs. It was so cute! One of them said "Everyone is a WINER!" Ha!! They definitely treated you like royalty. For the top overall and top in each age group, you won maple syrup! I'm not a huge syrup fan (my boys are), but I loved the idea. On top of that, they were giving away raffle prizes to the participants. The proceeds of the race went to the Granville Kiwanis Club...specifically, a project to renovate a local playground.
    Amanda picked me up around 7:15 a.m. (so the hubs could let the kiddos sleep in and come a little later). We did not get lost on the way there so that was a good sign that this would be a good day!

    Part of my cheer squad.
    Turn into the school driveway. Be blinded by the sun. Run over turn around cone. Almost run over the competition. Pick up race packet. Look at cute signs. Poop. Warm up for two miles (8:49/mile).
    There was no chip timing, so they encouraged the faster runners to go up front. Based on last year's results, Amanda and I decided to get close to the front. Amanda wanted a slow start (her slow start is my race pace!!!) and stayed with me for the first half of the race. We headed east, away from the school, before turning on the main road. As we started, this race was bringing back very frigid memories of the 2015 Granville Winter Run. It was a blistering cold 15 miler. I remembered it had some rolling hills, so I was expecting the potential for some elevation. It didn't seem bad at all. It seemed that we were always going up or down...rarely flat...but I wouldn't say there were any significant hills...very, very minor.
    As we reached our first turn around point, we had to run into this lady's looped GRAVEL driveway (pre-approved by the resident, of course)! That was a nice change in terrain (insert eye roll). Just after the gravel, we reached mile 1 [7:04]. I was actually shocked. I didn't feel like I was running that fast. I went into this knowing I likely only needed to run a 23 or 24 minute 5k to win the syrup. I knew I wanted to try to get one more good mile to distance myself from the other girls. There was one girl...I think she ended up getting 3rd place...that seemed to be staying with Amanda and me in the first quarter mile, but she quickly slowed down. Unfortunately, at the turn around, I had no idea how close the other girls were to me.
    We now headed back to the school to do another out and back going the other direction. As we passed the school, Jimmy and the kids were just arriving. It was awesome to hear them cheer me on!! This was also about the time that Amanda parted ways. As we were approaching 2 miles, I was anxious to see my split. I got distracted by one of the awesome signs that I missed my split! Ugh. I had no clue how fast I was running and no idea if any other girl was close to me.
    I knew the second turn around was coming up. Seeing Amanda would pump me up in addition to finally being able to see how close the other girls were to me. After the turn, it appeared that I could slow way down and still win. I decided to give myself a break and take it back a gear. As I was approaching the finish, everyone was so excited! What a great crowd!!
    Cool down for me...warm up for James. What a gorgeous day!
    After I crossed the line, I had a case of the dry heaves! Ha!! Not sure what that was about. I looked at my watch and it read 3.12 miles, 22:21.
    They grabbed the tear off section of my bib, gave me some congrats, and handed me my syrup. Yay!!! I hugged the fam and waited for the other girls to run in.
    Winner winner syrup dinner.
    I was curious about my splits since I missed the last two miles. Mile 2 ended up being [7:00] and mile 3 [7:25]. Maybe my 5th best time? I guess I can't complain about that.
    1st and 2nd place.
    I then got to enjoy watching Amanda run by for her second loop. She was dominating the women in the 10k. Not only was she 1st female, but 3rd overall! I ended up 6th overall and 1st female. Official time of...


    Several minutes later, they started the kids race. Although James was dead last, he was the star of the show. LOL.
    The home stretch!

    High five from the crowd.

    So much joy. That's what it's all about.

    Sunday, October 1, 2017

    BTTG: Week 3

    Back To The Grind
    I MIGHT be freaking out a bit. As I type this, I am 30 minutes post hearing about the Boston Marathon cutoff for this year...3 minutes, 23 seconds or faster than the BQ standard for your age!!! What the F. That is absolutely, positively nuts. I've had it in my head this entire year that I would be completely safe with a 3 minute cushion. Boy was I wrong! Now I'm sitting here, texting back and forth with Amanda, about how I'm going to approach my goal of qualifying. I just don't think I'm ready to run a 3:35 marathon...not yet.
    I have a marathon coming up. I need to decide what to do. I had this grand plan of starting off a little slower than my race pace and gradually speed up. It seems that this has been a good unintentional strategy for me in the past. I guess I will stick with this plan and just see how I feel. I at least need to try to go for a PR. Maybe I'll just stick with my 3:37 goal, since that is what I've been training for, and just build off of that in the spring. BLAH! This was not in my plan!!!! All the eye rolls.
    • 9/25: 8 total miles (outside 3 @ 8:30, treadmill 5 @ 7:59). Tempo run. I didn't want to run all 8 on the treadmill or out in the brutal heat, so I split it up. After three warm up miles outside, I went in to tackle my faster miles. Goal was three progressing from 7:37 to 7:21. My splits were 7:35, 7:30, 7:24.
    • 9/26: Shoulders, 30 minutes. It was a running rest day for me. The hubs and I went to the Y that evening, put the kids in child watch, and did a lift session together...just like the old days pre kids.
    • 9/27: 6.2 miles, 8:18/mile; Legs/Yoga, 50 minutes. Steady state run. My steady state runs are supposed to be between 8:20-8:35. This one was a tad bit fast. One of my New Albany friends wanted to try 3 miles in this pace range, so I agreed to meet her.
      The New Albany crew.
      Heather, Betty, and myself set off to run the NA 5k loop. The girls were amazing! I almost didn't want to finish my run because I wanted to celebrate. Since the 3rd mile was way too fast for this workout, I tried to slow it down a bit for the rest of the run.
    • 9/28: 4 miles, 9:28/mile. I met Lisa B and Sarah K for an easy 4 miler. In an attempt to spice things up, I actually made a route instead of running out and back down Hamilton. I love my runs with these ladies.
    • 9/29: Yoga, 1 hour. I had the day off work, so I selfishly brought the kids to the sitter (since I'm paying anyway and I've kept them home the past few Fridays!). I went to a free outdoor yoga class at Easton, washed/folded laundry all day, and binge watched 'This is Us.'
      Peaceful morning at Easton
      James broke a board in taekwondo.
    • 9/30: 8.14 total miles including a race (2.02 mile warm up, 8:49/mi; 3.12 mile race, 7:11/mi; 3 miles with my pups, 9:01/mi.). Amanda told me about this cheap 5k in Granville with a free kids race. Since James has been asking to race, I thought it would make for a fun family adventure. I will write a separate post with a race recap! Since I needed 8 miles for the day, I took the dogs out for some exercise. (P.S. My body was SO SORE from yoga! I couldn't believe it!!)
      My favorite girl.

      He's ready for some pancakes!

      Just celebrating September birthdays.
    • 10/1: 16.01 miles, 8:18/mile. Oops. Maybe a little fast? The workout was 16 miles with 6 at marathon pace. Marion and I wanted to check out the back half of the Columbus course. So, we met on campus and headed down High Street to the start/finish. We then wiggled our way through downtown, Short North, Campus, Upper Arlington, Grandview, Vic Village, and back to our cars. My only regret is drinking all of my water in the first 12 miles. I got a little crampy that last mile! My quads are STILL sore from yoga on Friday. What the crap?! I'm looking forward to an easy start to my running week.
      The Shoe!!!
    To be honest, I don't know where I'm at mentally. I used to be more confident. UGH. I wish I could go back to the Lisa when I ran Pig 2015. I was totally clueless. I had no clue what I was capable of and ran my best marathon to date. I want to be clueless. Unfortunately, the difficulty of the marathon is all too familiar. 


    Sunday, September 24, 2017

    BTTG: Week 2

    Back To The Grind
    Karate CHOP!

    Just loving life.
     The humidity returned this week. The first day of fall didn't feel like the first day of fall. No complaints here, though, because I love warm weather runs (warm weather races...not so much). Overall, my runs felt great this week. I'm hoping that means I won't feel tired from the start for my next race. I'm decreasing my weekly mileage a bit in hopes that it helps prepare me for a successful race day experience.
    • 9/18: 9 total miles; 2.15 mile warm up outside, 8:39/mile; 6.85 on the treadmill, 7:47/mile. Workout: 3x3200 with 400 recovery progressing from about 7:55 to 7:25/mile. I chose sleep over getting up early and running solo in my hood. I had just enough time after work to get it done. Of course, you never know how these workouts will turn out, but this one was successful!
    • 9/19: 4 miles, 10:12/mile; Back, 35 minutes. I met Lisa B. in Gahanna for a short, easy run. No agenda today! We enjoyed catching up and trying to figure out our mental game.
    • 9/20: 7.01 miles, 8:31/mile. Legs/Yoga, 45 minutes. Steady state run. Elizabeth was looking for running partners for her workout, but none of us needed/wanted her particular workout. Katie and I told her we would run the same route so she wasn't totally alone, but do our workout. It ended up making all parties happy, safe, and successful. After a warm up mile, Katie and I set off with the goal of keeping the miles between 8:20-8:35. We were mostly successful!

    • 9/21: Bis/Tris, 30 minutes. Running rest day meant extra sleep and an afternoon trip to the gym.
    • 9/22: 20.01miles, 8:47/mile. It was a solo tour de Gahanna and New Albany for this runner. I found some ladies that were running early this morning, but it was too early for me...especially since I had the day off of work. I warned them the night before that I'd likely cancel, but I was going to set my alarm for 4 a.m. anyway. When the alarm went off, I immediately sent them a message to say I wasn't going to be there. I opted to sleep until 6-something, help the hubs get the kids ready, and set off just after 7 a.m. It was a gorgeous morning. It was cool in the beginning of the run. I had no route planned, so I just set off towards Creekside. I was able to catch this beautiful sunrise:
      Since they finished the bike trail on Hamilton, I knew I could connect easily to New Albany without zig-zagging through Gahanna. As I went through some of the neighborhoods, I snapped a pic of the beautiful fall colors on this summer-like first day of fall:
      Gold dust.
      I ran my way through New Albany hoping that I'd turn around at the right moment. I had plenty of time to do the math, so I had a turn around number in mind. I couldn't leave NA without getting a picture of this flag...what a gorgeous day!!
      God Bless America.
      My only trouble this run was during miles 13-15. The sun was starting to beam down on me and I was running low on water. I knew I'd be passing by the LC, so I thought I'd look for a water fountain near the pool. Fortunately, they had a huge cooler of COLD water by the volleyball court. Thank you, LC!!! I filled up, and all was good for the rest of the run. I made my way back home via the pretty trails by Academy Park. It was such a happy, adventurous run! These are the moments I'm so thankful for. I only looked at my watch to check my distances for fueling and turn around points. I didn't look at my pace and managed to have a great run!
    • 9/23: 10.25 miles, 8:44/mile. I enjoyed a rare run with my old running crew in Powell. I'm not able to run with them very often, so it's always a treat when I do. They had there 20 miler, and I jumped in on the last half. Another great run and beautiful day. It was nice catching up with everyone. Special thanks to Jeanne who dropped off Gatorade and 1st place medals for us! So sweet and thoughtful!!
      [Dani, ME, Marion, Karen]
    • 9/24: REST. I took my kids to spectate the Big Bad Wolfe Race, went to church, drank afternoon coffee while the kids and boo napped, watched football, practiced yoga, and mowed the yard. So, yeah, rest. ;)
      Northwest Church of the Naz

      Colts actually won a game.

    Monday, September 18, 2017

    BTTG: Week 1

    Back to the Grind
    How many times have I run at or around 12.31 miles at MP?! Enough to know I shouldn't be as sore as I was following my DNF on Sunday. Crazy pants.
    Dani snapped this pic sometime after 10 miles.
     Since all I did was a glorified tempo run at Erie, I decided that (after several conversations with my best/coach friend) I would mostly copy my Erie program, but tweak it as needed. Here's what I am sure of: My legs have been tired from the start for all of my marathons this year. Little Rock was due to running a 5k that was too fast the day before. I have no idea why I was tired for Carmel. For Erie, I'm not sure why, either...but it was a different tired than I felt at Carmel.
    There are several things I'm not sure of right now:
    1) Am I running too many miles? A couple of years ago, I peaked at 59-60 miles per week...felt fine and ran well. My goal this time around was to get close to that, so I peaked at 58 miles. In the winter/early spring, I peaked at 50. Should I return back to 50 being my max?
    2) Are my speedier workouts appropriate? Are they the ones I need to be doing to focus on my weaknesses? Am I doing too much speed and not enough race pace?
    3) What does an appropriate taper week look like for me? For Erie, I followed the taper I did for Pig (my PR race). Am I resting too much...not enough? Do I need to not take off two days in a row?
    That's a lot to ponder, but here's what I decided. For the next few weeks, I will decrease my overall weekly mileage...peaking at 50, I will continue to focus on putting race pace miles in my long runs, I will do a steady state run every week, and I will have just one important speed workout rather than the occasional two.
    • 9/11: 6 miles, 8:56/mile. I was so freaking sore when I woke up. I wanted to get some recovery miles to see how I really felt. The run felt fine, but I could feel the soreness in my quads, abs, and pelvis. I couldn't believe how sore I felt after how little I did the day before.
    • 9/12: 7.05 miles, 9:31/mile. The plan was 12 x 1 minute fartleks and a total of 9-10 miles. I was not feeling awesome. I woke up at 3:50 a.m. to meet some friends at 4:30. I got there early so did a mile solo before doing another 3.3 with Ellen and Melissa. As I started my fartleks on the track, I knew it would be a rough workout. I ended up stopping at 8 fartleks and just finishing up the mile for my cool down. I'm looking forward to my rest day!
    • 9/13: Chest/Back/Legs, 30 minutes. Running rest day. Almost sinful not to run birthday miles! I needed the rest, though.
      A rainbow for my birthday.
    • 9/14: 8.35 miles, I have no idea per mile; Bis/Tris, 30 minutes. Today's run was a combo of three runs! Yay! I planned to run 5 miles with Sarah at 5:20 with the intention of getting the other three beforehand...didn't happen. I got a total of 5.17 miles with Sarah (9:16/mile), 1 mile with my dog, Sophie (9:24/mile), when I got home from Sarah's, and another 2.18 after work (8:40/mile). Now let's see if my butt can get up early in the morning.
      Post run selfie with Sophie.
    • 9/15: 17.01 miles, 8:50/mile. Today's workout called for 17 miles with the last 6-7 at marathon pace. Since we are spending the weekend at Lake Erie, I wanted to get my long run out of the way. Even though I had the day off work, I needed to get finished early. I wasn't very fond of that 3:45 a.m. wake up call. I met up with Tamara, Marcie, and Brandi. We did a short loop and picked up Katie. I did a total of 10 miles with these ladies before setting off on my own. As we were finishing the first 10, I felt like I needed to poop. I was hoping the park bathrooms would be open even though it was still dark out. Unfortunately, they weren't! UGH. It seemed to hit me like a ton of bricks all of a sudden. I knew I couldn't hold it any longer!! I ran to the van to get some napkins then set off for the nearest bush. This was a running first for me! I cannot believe I freaking pooped in the bushes. I mean, my friends do it all the time, but I've never been that desperate. Despite my embarrassment, it was worth it because I felt so much better. I finished my run with 7 progressive miles from 8:16/mile to 7:53/mile!

      We had a fun morning at the park!

    • 9/16: 8.01 miles, 8:16/mile. I was initially planning to rest today and run this workout tomorrow...BUT, when your kids are driving you nuts on your weekend away to "rest," you go run to get away. I thought for sure this workout would have been tough simply because of my mileage the past couple of days. The goal was to run 8 miles with 6 at steady state pace (8:20-8:35). I was planning a 2 mile warm up followed by the faster miles. When mile 1 was 8:19, I let out a little "oops" and decided to do the first 6 as my faster miles followed by a cool down. I guess I was feeling good and comfortable, so I went a little fast. My average for the first 6 was 8:11/mile.
      Morning exploration with James.

      Afternoon run to shake off the crazy.
    • 9/17: REST. Enjoyed a beautiful morning at Lake Erie, drove home (major car sickness), went to small group, and tried to survive the evening.
      Sunday morning sunrise.

      Finally home!
    I felt so much better as the week progressed. By the time I got to my long run on Friday, my body felt good. My outlook has turned to positive again, and I'm ready for the next challenge.