Category Archives: Training

Two new upper-body exercises

When you go to the gym with your husband and do just two arm exercises with him, you are extremely sore the next day. This is the story of my life right now.

On Sunday, Zac and I went to the gym together. He warned me it would be a long day, and I still did my walking (1.25 miles in about 20 minutes) before heading off to the gym. I finished all of my physical therapy exercises for my leg early and began working out my upper body. After I completed my upper body workout, I tagged along with Zac for his final two exercises at the gym: bicep curls and a chest fly exercise. These exercise, however, were not your typical exercises.

For the bicep curls, I had a seat at the bicep curl machine that utilized free weights. (Free weights are much heavier and offer more resistance than resistance machines for the designated amount of weight used). I only did one set of bicep curls, but I did a ladder set than began with heavy weight and ended with light weight. Zac calls these burnouts. I started with 25lbs. Boy, it was heavy. After about eight reps at 25lbs I was feeling as if my muscles were going to explode from my arm. He told me to keep going and he removed a 5lb plate from the machine. I kept going, doing as many reps as I could, as he continued to take off another 5lb plate. I went from 25lbs to 20 lbs to 15 lbs and finally to 10lbs. At 10lbs, I did as many as I could until I completely exhausted my muscles. I lost count along the way, but I estimate I probably did about 40-something reps in this one set.

Then, for the chest fly exercise, we headed over to the cable machine. I lunged forward with one leg and completed 3 sets of 15 reps of chest flys on the cable machine.

 So, here I am, one day later with my arms and chest feeling like liquefied Jell-o. If you are looking for a new kind of bicep curl or chest fly, I highly suggest these ones. They are killer!

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Favorite 2009 Running Moments

At the end of every year, I put together a list of my favorite running moments from the year. It is my way of reflecting on the good and looking forward to the future. This year, I am also adding in a list of my running goals for the new year as well.

Top Running Moments of 2009
5. Finally getting over my anti-running capri attitude: Running capris are awesome and until recently I hated them. I only bought them because Vegas was going to be pretty chilly and now I wear them all the time.
4. Running with and meeting even more running friends: What can I say? I LOVE the people in my running group. I enjoy their company on our long runs, I thrive off of their motivation and support, and I look forward to seeing them every Saturday morning. Even if I’m not in a running mood, or if I am dreading the long miles, or if the weather is horrible, I wake up early on Saturday mornings with a smile on my face because I know I am about to be in the company of some of the greatest people.
3. My New  1/2 Marathon PR: For what seemed like forever, I was stuck with a 1:50:XX half marathon time. I trained and trained and still had difficulty breaking that mark. But, that was until 2009. In October (a week after my favorite moment #2) I ran the Long Beach Half Marathon. I can honestly say that I’ve never run a half marathon with so much heart before and I left every once of evergy I had on the course. I finished in 1:42:19. First, I was exstatic that I broke 1:50; secondly, I was even more pumped that I completely smashed my previous PR of 1:50:XX!

2. Winning the Harvest Festival 10K: In October, I signed up for a 10K on a whim. I’d never run a 10K race before and felt that the 6.2 miles run would be an excellent tempo run for my 1/2 marathon the week after. While I didn’t meet my time goal for the race, which was coming in under 45 minutes, I finished in 45:19 and was the first female to cross the finish line. I’ve placed 1st in my age group before, but never as the first female to cross the finish line. It was awesome.

1. Accomplishing my goal of running a sub-4 marathon: In December I ran the Rock and Roll Las Vegas Marathon. I completed this marathon in 3:58:04 and was so elated that I accomplished a goal that I’ve been working toward since I started training for marathons in 2007. Even though I am super happy with my time and progress, it is time to step it up and eventually shave off an additional 18 minutes.

Running Goals for 2010
1. Run a 3:40 marathon and qualify for Boston
2. Run a race in another state besides California and Nevada
3. Run a sub 1:40 half marathon
4. Run a sub 45 minute 10K
5. Log in at least 1500 miles throughout the year.

Cheers to all. Have a happy and healthy 2010!

2009: A Look at the Numbers

In the year 2009, I ran 1133.3 miles at an average 8:55 mile pace.

I ran more than 158 hours which comes to more than 6 full (24 hour) days of running.

I ran in a total of 5 races:
1 Marathon: The Rock and Roll Las Vegas Marathon in December
3 Half-Marathons: Surf City 1/2, Pasadena 1/2, and Long Beach 1/2
1 10K: The Harvest Festival 10K

I PRed three times this year (marathon, 1/2 marathon, and 10K).

I was sidelined with an injury twice in 2009. Once in February and once in May. Both times I dislocated my right knee and missed about two-three weeks of running.

Up and running again.

After being sick for more than a week and a half, I am up and running again. Unfortunately, I took more than 2 weeks off of running because I got sick five days post marathon. I was only planning for one week off.

I went for a run at the gym yesterday. I don’t mind the treadmill and the gusty winds intimidated me. That run was so difficult. I was only able to get in 3 miles and they seemed to just drag on. Whereas, usually when I run on the treadmill, the first mile or two drag, and then the next four to six miles after that fly by.

Today, I took my running to the streets and did my favorite, flat, five mile loop around my neighborhood. It started out easier than expected but got difficult again at mile 2.5. This is very discouraging because I want to train harder so that I can attempt a BQ at LA in less than 3 months.

I’m worried that my self-diagnosed bronchitis will hinder my training for the upcoming races, but at the same time I am happy to just be up and running again.

Running Humor

Being sick sucks. I want to run 😦 Hopefully tomorrow is better. In the meantime, some running humor. Watch out for crazy drivers, and of course, those darn dinosaurs!

13 days and counting

It is no secret that I am not the healthiest eater on the planet. My favorite foods are fried and dipped in ranch, I am a sucker for Cherry Garcia ice cream, and I believe I am addicted to diet coke. With that said, since I am 2 weeks out from my marathon, my eating completely changes starting now. No more diet cola, no more excess sugar (after my pint of Cherry Garcia in the freezer is gone), and no ranch. Actually, these past couple months I’ve been really good with the ranch. For chicken fingers I’ve switched to honey mustard and for salads I’ve switched to basalmic. The thing I hate the most is that I train so hard and put so much effort into my running and I manage to eat like crap. I wonder just how much my poor food choices affect my performance. By now, I probably seem like the worst eater ever. And this is not the case either. The only fast food I eat is In ‘n Out, and over the past couple months I have been limiting my soda intake. I hope that knowing I will be running 26.2 miles in 13 days will help me make better food choices. Now, I just need to make sure I can get some sleep before the race.

Let the taper begin!

Reaching the taper of my training is bittersweet. On one hand it is sweet because I am this much closer to the marathon on the otherhand it is bitter because I have to drastically cut my miles, which is never fun.

I am extremely happy that I get to start my taper on a good foot. I just finished peak week and I was able to get in 50.5 miles this past week! That is the most miles I’ve ever ran in one week. Also, I just finished an amazing 23 mile run yesterday. My group and I ran it at a 9:14 pace and we significantly increased our pace at mile 16 and sustained it for the remaining 7 miles! Also, we felt strong when we finished.

Vegas, here we come!