19.01 miles today. Hard run. Just struggled out there but did more than I came to do (I intended 17), so I’m proud of that. Ave pace: 11:37 for running portion (18.26 miles) Cooled down for .75 at end with a very slow walk pace. Steep hill was a great idea – but I really felt it later in the run! My calves were yelling at me! Total time: About 3 hours and 46 min. I’m beat. 

Windy today – but also warm and sunny. Lots of weather changes on this run. Enjoyed the sunshine and 55 degrees at the end, though that felt a bit hot but didn’t especially like the 42 degrees and strong winds that were aiming at me for about 8 miles. Brrrrrr. Spotted an awesome hill about a mile and a half in and of …course — had to run up it. About a mile and a half up, then back down again. Ran the rest of the route on a fairly flat path. I’m feeling it in the calves. They cramped up on me at mile 15 even though I’d been trying to take in fuel the whole way. I was starving the last few miles, so though I did work on it, I know I still have to work on getting enough calories and liquid in me for the duration of a really long run.

I ran alone today. It was a bit lonely. I missed my friend but was thankful that Shania Twain kept singing, “I Ain’t No Quitter” when I’d hit repeat on the mp3. I needed that kind of tune mentally today.

Pretty beat now. It wasn’t my best run. It wasn’t my worst either. lol I could use a nap – and a steak! Maybe both at the same time. ha ha


125.6 this morning! Back to normal – and since it’s a morning weight – it’s a keeper!  Dressed and ready to do Denise Austin’s Pilates workout. I’m so pumped they finally put this one on DVD (this is a copy borrowed from my library.) I had the VHS for years and loved it but our vcr broke a couple of years ago, so I had the tape but couldn’t watch it. It’ll be awesome to work out with Denise again this morning. My core is definitely in need of her mad skills!


I forgot to add — Today was my first run with my new earphones – the over-the-ear hanger type and I  them!!!! They were exactly what I was looking for! And for about $9 they were the right price.

AND………….when I weighed myself after my workout I saw that blessed 125.0 again!  I never count my after-workout weights as “keepers” until they are morning weigh-ins — but still – seeing it at all is a good sign that it’s within a short distance again. Yippy Skippy!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


Two workouts today.  Those cute three older kids of mine met me at the door again after my speedwork so I took them two laps around the block (just a hair short of half a mile.) They’re so darn cute jogging along beside me!!!! 

Ok…the first workout. I was eager to do the Yasso 800’s to give me a general idea of my marathon fitness at this point in training, thinking it would give me a base to see how much improvement I get in the next couple of months before the ultra marathon on April 24th. 

Remember the idea is to warm up (I did a mile), then do half a mile comfortably hard (faster than marathon pace, but not all out), then ease back for .25 mile and easily jog or take a little walk break (or some of both which is what I did today since it was my first time and I wanted to leave something in the legs for my 17 miler (UP the Robie mountain and back down) this upcoming weekend.

The .5 fast and .25 easy repeats 10 x (though I admit that Yasso says he only starts with 4 repeats and adds one each week as he trains building up to holding the goal pace for 10 repeats.) But.. I figure I’ve kept my miles up this winter, have done more hills, etc and wanted to see where my fitness was at this point – so I did all 10. And then a cooldown.

I was pretty excited to put my Garmin to work for this run. I knew it had an interval feature, but hadn’t played with it much in the past. Today I set it up to let me do a warm up (I was wondering going in how long it would let me warm up – but no worries. I hit the start button and it let me warm up as long as I wanted before I had to hit the “lap” button to signal the start of the speed session.) Cool beans! I did 1 mile warmup at an easy pace and loved how the Garmin would beep at me five seconds before it was time for that segment to end (so I could push a little more or start speeding up depending on where I was at in the workout.) The Garmin flashed a nice screen at me showing how much longer I had to run for that portion and how many more speed portions were left before I was done. I liked that info at a quick glance! I also didnt’ have to hit the “lap” button again until the entire workout was done and I was finishing up my cool down (which ended up being 1.26 miles — I ended up being further away from home than I’d intended.) ha

So — two thumbs up for the Garmin for this workout! And, how fun not to have to do my speedwork on a track! I seriously hate running on the track so this was heaven. 

Well, I headed out and right away realized that I wasn’t going to be setting the pace I’d planned to aim for — at least not totally. It was WINDY out and I was running right into it for a good portion of the run. So…. instead of fighting the wind and killing my body — I pulled back just enough to feel I was giving about the same effort I’d intended to give – but with the wind factored in. So, I was slower than I would be on a less windy day — but still ran relatively well.

The total workout ended up being 9.75 miles and it took me 1 hr 47 min and 15 seconds. My average OVERALL pace (counting those intentionally slow .25 milers), was 10:59. Not that shabby considering all the walk breaks and the wind.

Here’s my Yasso 800’s
1. 4:45
2. 4:30
3. 4:55
4. 4:41
5. 4:50
6. 4:56
7. 5:30 (four dogs came after me and I had to walk away slowly and I sprained my ankle) I’m fine. It was achy for a mile or two though.
8. 4:23
9. 4:40
10. 4:48

My marathon in October was 4:57 (though I was on pace for a 4:45 until mile 21 when I hit the wall bad) and my average of the Yasso 800s today was 4.51 approximately. So, I’m relatively in shape for about the same marathon I ran before.  I have 8 1/2 weeks until my Ultra. I think it will be cool to see if I can improve on that time in these speed intervals. I’d like to see it get to 4:30 honestly. I feel I have it in me. 

Once I got some Gatorade (did I mention I forgot to bring anything to eat or drink on this run?!) I took the kids twice around the loop in our neighorhood. It was only .44 more miles at a nice easy pace with walk breaks (my 7 year old is still really needing a lot of those as his little legs get used to keeping up with his 9 and 10 year old siblings.)  Ave pace: 16:51. Total time: 7:21. Worth my weight in gold to see my kids doing what I love — totally!!!!!


126.8 this morning – and that was before using the bathroom, which I did after getting dressed.  So nice to see the scale going in the right direction again.

I do think I lost touch for a few days there with listening to my body when I was eating. I’ve said for a couple of years that the best thing I did (besides running) was to learn to stop before I got full at meals and snacks. That stuffed feeling feels awful and I’ve been eating more than I need to lately. Just one more bite – or two or six. You know. Focusing on how good those mashed potatoes and gravy taste instead of how sick my stomach is getting from continuing to take more bites. So…yesterday I made a big point to slow down a bit and pay attention again — and the scale rewarded me.  My tummy also feels less icky. I definitely think they are connected.

Ok, heading out on a run. I have the energy of a slug right now. I’ve been like this for days. Definitely means I need to run!! Since we’ve had a guest the past few days, my workout schedule has been thrown off. He’s leaving today and I’m jumping back into my real life. 

Alissa — I’m likely a crazy gal for doing both races — but I’ve been dreaming of Robie since I was a teen and I need to do this ultra to prove to myself I can do it. So – both I’ll do. I won’t “race” either of them though. I’ll just aim to finish both. That’s good enough for this round.


I walked with the kids to the park yesterday while they rode their bikes (well, Savannah took the easy street and had me push her in a stroller!) It felt like Spring!

I woke up today to a blanket of snow on my front lawn. Good bye, Spring. I knew you couldn’t stay just yet. Wayne took off this morning to go skiing at Bogus Basin, one of the local ski resorts. I’ve never skied in my life. Neither has Wayne. His friend has, though and he’s with him. But… they just called and the stupid van just broke down AGAIN!  It’s the same thing that happened to me a few weeks ago. The serpentine belt just fell off. We paid to have a new one put on six months ago. Grumble. Grumble. At least it didn’t happen while I was out with the five kids on my own. In the snow. That would be worse.

So, I didn’t run yesterday or today. I seem to have pulled some muscles in my lower back from doing the 10 minutes of wii Super Hula the other day during my workout. Wayne was watching for part of it and I admit I may have been putting a little too much into it since he was looking.  There’s nothing like shaking your booty – until your old lady back gives out.

I had planned on doing some Yasso 800’s today. For anyone unfamiliar with them, they were created by Bart Yasso of Runner’s World fame (they call him the mayor of running since he’s so friendly and had a big hand in creating lots of races around the US in the last twenty years or so.) He created the system for himself as a speed workout, but a few years later when looking at his log books realized that they could predict his marathon times fairly accurately!

The system looks like this: You do a warmup (I usually warm up at least a mile to make sure I’m loose.) Then you run 800 m (half a mile) at a hard pace, back off for 400 m (1/4 mile), then do the 800 again at the same tough pace. Early in the season of training, you do just a few of these and build up until you can hold the same pace for the 800 for 10 reps.

So..if your average pace for the 800’s is say….5:00 (so a 10:00 min per mile pace), then you can confidently say you’ll run about a 5 hr marathon. If you can do an average of 4:00 min for the 800’s, then you likely can run a 4 hr marathon.  He said it’s worked on almost every marathon for years — though you have to assume a few extra minutes if you’re a new marathoner (less than 5) or if the conditions are severe (weather or hills.) Cool, huh? So, I read about these in Bart’s book, My Life on the Run last year and was eager to try his system out. I “think” I have a 4:30 marathon in me this year. I “think” I’m fit enough right now to do the 10 reps and see where I’m at. I was hoping to do it today. But.. my lower back is hurting a lot and I’m afraid it would make it worse. So….. Maybe I’ll try it next week. Want to do it with me, Bertha?!!!! 

By the way, here’s the Runner’s World online article about the Yasso 800s if you’re interested anyone.

I’m still debating what workout to do today. I might use the treadmill since it’s just collecting dust right now or do some yoga. I’m thinking the yoga would help my back pain. Hmmmmmm…..

Oh, and I’m back to 127.0. I say back to because I actually saw 129’s this week when I was at my most bloated.  My period is due in a few days, so the extra 2 lbs will probably be gone soon too and I’ll be back to 125 land where I live happily. (Or at least where my pants button better.) Must work on eating more fiber, drinking more water and eating more foods like yogurt and whole grains. I’m hoping this junk-food junkie can reform. My tummy will thank me for it. My ultra might go better.  It would be good for me.


My weekly mileage has looked like this so far for 2010:
First week of Jan (so, Jan 1st and 2nd on my calendar) – 16.25 miles
Week ending Jan 9th – 26.01 miles
Week ending Jan 16th – 17.7
Week ending Jan 23rd – 17.91
Week ending Jan 30th – 31.33
Last day of Jan. – 3

Total miles in January – 112.2

I also did 10 wii fit plus workouts

February looks like this so far:
Week ending Feb 6th – 8.02 ( I took this week to recover better from ultra)
Week ending Feb 13th – 13.01 (still reverse tapering and glycogen replacing) Maybe I replaced too much glycogen. 
Week ending Feb 20th – 29.6
So far this week: 8.25

Total miles for Feb so far: 58.88 miles Total wii fit/other workouts: 5 (See? Not so good with my cross-training so far this month.) 

I’m going to probably run another 10 or so this week and 17 on the 28th. My total should be close to 85.88 or so.

I do think those two easier weeks had an effect on me. And the banana bread I baked and that hawaiian pizza I ordered from Pizza Hut last week. And those darn Ferrero Rocher chocolate gold balls Wayne gave me for Valentine’s Day, too. It hasn’t been a huge change – but I think it’s been enough. My stomach looks 6 months pregnant. 

I think I need to increase my fiber, drink more water and make sure I’m cross-training 3 x a week. I hate feeling so bloated!


Every morning in Africa, a gazelle wakes up.
It knows it must outrun the fastest lion or it will be killed.
Every morning in
Africa, a lion wakes up.
It knows that it must run faster than the slowest gazelle, or it will starve.
It doesn’t matter whether you’re a lion or a gazelle
when the sun comes up you’d better be running.

Hmm.. my weight has creeped up a bit again. I blame Pizza Hut for having such delicious lasagna and hawaiian pizza. I really think the IBS is acting up again, too. My Mom mentioned taking fiber supplements and maybe it’s come to that. It would be nice to be “regular” again.  I’ve also been dealing with a stupid yeast infection again this past week. It’s another reminder that I have not got this healthy eating thing down pat. I need to work on that. It’s a weak area, for sure.


What a fun run! I enjoyed catching up with my friend Marci while taking in the beautiful scenery near her country home. The hills were fantastic (and steep) and really were a great workout! I especially loved that her 4 year old son joined us for the last mile! What fun to see his little legs churning up a storm! 

It’s been such a thrill hanging out with my hometown friends on runs the past year. Growing up in a tiny town, all of those I knew growing up really felt like extended family. Everyone went their separate ways as we grew older, but here we are running side-by-side again after all these years. I still have pictures of Marci and Bertha and I when we were 6 or 7. Now we are all mothers with ten kids between us!  How fun is that? 

8.25 miles. Time: 1:46. Average pace: 12:56 (lots of walk breaks – Marci’s coming back from a hip injury.) She did awesome! I was so proud of her!