Thursday, October 30, 2008

Long term goals

I believe in long term goals. So much so that when my friend Sandi said we should do the Portland Marathon next year (and that she had signed up for it), I agreed immediately and just signed myself up. I must be nuts to do that again... or something. But I really want to better my time, and hey, they have a judged racewalking division! Too cool!

still hanging on

My cold is still hanging on. Well, maybe? I don't have any symptoms except fatigue. I have been sleeping a lot and I'm tired, and my brain is fuzzy. But other than that I feel fine.

Yesterday I did 15 min easy racewalking and then my weight training class. My heart rate was higher than usual in weight training. Then today I racewalked SugarHouse Park in 41:24, at an easy-to-moderate effort. Hmmm, 2 min slower than usual for an easy effort. I think the cold is still bugging me. I'm glad I worked out anyway, because I really do feel OK except for some fatigue, and it did perk me up a bit to get outside. The weather is so glorious right now, even in the early mornings. It was 44 this morning and so still - perfect walking weather.

Brave boy

This is my brave boy. He had his 4-year-old doctor appt on Monday, and got 5 shots. He did cry a bit, but he did a very good job. I feel so fortunate to have the opportunity to get him vaccinated against these terrible diseases that used to take so many young lives: measles, mumps, rubella, diptheria, tetanus, pertussis, polio, chicken pox, and influenza. While we were there, Michelle and I also got flu shots. If you haven't gotten your kids up-to-date on their vaccines, by all means, please take them and get them vaccinated. These shots are truly life saving!!!

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Doing better

I'm feeling mostly better. Yay!

Yesterday I didn't work out. I was feeling better, but needed the extra sleep and rest time. Plus, I'm not training for anything right now, so I have no problem taking it easy, other than that I like to get the activity points and eat them :).

I went to another WW meeting last night. It was great to go to 2 in one week! The Monday night crew wanted an update on my marathon endeavors, so I took my photos and enjoyed the meeting thoroughly. We talked about my favorite WW tool, "reframing", which involves thinking through why you eat when you're not really hungry. It asks you what you are trying to get from the food, and how you can get it some other way. I love this tool and want to become more proficient with it, so I'm really going to use it a lot this week to curb my night-time eating impulses. I hope. Anyway, the class was so enthusiastic about hearing about my marathon, and it was a blast. I passed around Team In Training flyers and I think about 1/2 the class took them (probably 20-25 people!). It was awesome. I'm thinking of switching to Monday night meetings for a while, for reasons to be elaborated on in a future post if I decide to do it.

This morning I got up and was debating between running and walking. I was still feeling a bit sluggish, and was just not in the mood to run, so I racewalked from our house to Liberty Park, around the park, and back (3.9 miles). I was kinda slow (43:30; about an 11:06 mile), but that wasn't surprising given that I'm getting over being sick. It was a beautiful morning - 42 degrees, and still. The dogs and I enjoyed getting out.

I am watching my friend Sarah's kids today, as usual for Tuesdays. The miraculous thing today is that ALL FOUR children are sleeping right now. Yes, even Calvin, who of late has not been napping. It's amazing. I did my finances, wrote some checks, am blogging, and now I hope to work on getting out the pretty thank-yous I made for my TNT supporters. I will try to finish them but not sure if naptime will be long enough.

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Marathon splits

Here they are. They are ugly, but oh well. Next time I hope to be faster. Oh, did I just say "next time"? Am I really crazy enough to do that again? Probably yes. I think I might try to do the Portland Marathon, since they have a judged racewalking division.

5284 TAMMY STEVENSON F 38 SALT LAKE CITY, UT 319 04:59:49.250 11:26

5K (3.1)
368 00:34:52.250 11:13

10K (6.2)
392 00:36:35.450 11:46

15K (9.3)
206 00:33:09.180 10:40

13.1 miles
283 00:37:55.200 10:01

25K (15.5)
308 00:29:48.690 12:14

30K (18.6)
509 00:41:33.440 13:22

35K (21.7)
300 00:36:47.160 11:50

40K (24.8)
196 00:34:28.400 11:05

26.2 miles
284 00:14:39.480 10:53


Yeah, I figured this would happen. I'm sick with a nasty cold of the exhaustion, sore throat, congestion, and headache variety. Ugh. I'm taking it very easy today and doing basically nothing. Loren is having to pick up the slack and I hope he is up to the challenge, because I'm not.

I had planned to bike with a friend at 1:30 pm and I forgot to call and tell her I was sick. She showed up, and Loren had to go out and apologize to her for me. I feel really lousy about forgetting to call her. The least I could have done was let her know so she didn't waste her time driving over here. I'm such a flake :(. I really hate it when I do stupid things like that.

The good news for my blog readers is that I while I was lying down resting, I was able to upload some pictures this morning, so if you are interested you can see more race weekend and race day photos (including the professional race photos, which I purchased because they were *very* good).

San Francisco Day 1 (October 17th)

San Francisco Day 2 (October 18th)
San Francisco Day 3 (October 19th; race day)
San Francisco Day 4 (October 20th)

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Meeting today; running

It was VERY good to be back at my Weight Watchers meeting today. I've missed being in my normal weekly meeting - if you recall, my Team in Training Saturday workouts conflicted w/WW, so I've been going sporadically at other times. That hasn't been good. I need a weekly meeting to be accountable to. It doesn't necessarily have to be on Saturday morning, but I do need to go regularly.

This morning we set 6-week goals, and it was awesome to be back in goal-setting mode again. I have 3 simple goals: 1) lose 4 lbs, 2) eat no more than 2 points dessert per day (with a once per week exception for a meal out w/the hubby and/or kids), and 3) remember that I am doing this because it makes me truly happy to eat this way.

Today went well - I didn't have too much trouble despite the Costco cake in the fridge left over from last night. I just knew that it was not for me, and didn't really want it, mostly because I know all the other baggage that comes with it. It's just not worth it.


I went running this morning. I did 2 loops of SugarHouse Park for 5.1 miles total, including to and from my house. I finished in 50:xx. I was taking it easy, but still, that's pretty slow for someone who is in good shape. I attribute it to a few things: 1) my running muscles are not well-trained, 2) I think I am coming down with something (matter of fact, I feel pretty stinky right now - sore throat, etc., and may not make it out of bed in the morning), 3) I did 26.2 miles of racewalking on Sunday and I'm surely not fully recovered - that will take a few weeks!

So for now, I'm going to enjoy being a slow runner. At least I'm out there!

Friday, October 24, 2008

Party tonight!

Tonight I'm having an open house to celebrate my marathon finish and to thank my supporters for their help in raising $6288.40 for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society. If you're in town and you want to stop by, it's from 7-9 pm.

Workout stuff:

Yesterday - Ran about 4 miles in around 38 minutes, taking it nice & easy. No, I did not racewalk. I ran. I am thinking of running the Cold Turkey on T-giving, because it's a nice course for a run (pretty hilly for walking, though do-able).

Today - Ran 12 minutes as a warm-up for my weight training class, and did a circuit training workout as on Wednesday.

Tomorrow - will probably do an easy run before heading off to Weight Watchers. Not looking forward to the weigh-in after the overconsumption of last weekend, but what can I say? I'm glad I'm going back to the meeting because I need it right now. I need someone to give me a kick in my (larger) rear to get me back on track. Usually I don't struggle too much but I think the license of marathon training has really gotten to my head. If you're the praying type, I could use some right about now! I need to re-focus. I have about 5 lbs that would be better off somewhere else. Any takers? ;)

Wednesday, October 22, 2008


I'm feeling pretty good after the race. On Monday & Tuesday I was slightly sore in many muscle groups. Today I feel pretty darn good.

Monday I decided to bike with Loren to loosen things up. We biked from Fisherman's Wharf in SF up & over the GG Bridge to Sausalito for lunch and then on to Tiburon. From there we took the ferry back to the wharf. It was awesome! We had a great time and my legs handled the biking no problem.

Tuesday I took the day OFF of exercising, but this morning I was rarin' to go, so I ran for 12 min before my weight training workout, and did a light weight circuit with jumping rope in between each exercise. It was awesome, and just what I needed. At the end of the workout my instructor stretched out all my leg muscles - I was the only one who showed for class, so it was like having a personal trainer!

Tomorrow I'm going running again. It was fun, and I think I will run the Cold Turkey on T-giving day. It's hilly, so it's a better running race than racewalking, and I want to do a little running this month just to give my RW muscles a break.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Nike Women's Marathon - October 19, 2008, San Francisco

My first marathon is over, and I'm a proud finisher. I did it!

My time was much slower than I was hoping for, but I offer no excuses. It was just not a fast day for me. All the same, I raced the best that I could, and finished just barely under 5 hours, at 4:59:49. I told Steve on the phone yesterday that I would be disappointed with this time, and in some ways I am, but in other ways I am not. I feel that I did the best race I could do today, and I managed to get under 5 hours despite some tough circumstances, pushing hard at the end to make it, and giving it my all throughout. Yes, I might have been faster on another day in another place, but today, this was a good race, and a good time for me.

And now, I am a MARATHONER!!!

So, now a blow-by-blow for those who are interested. Loren and I met my teammates in the hotel lobby at 5:45 am to walk to the race start. Once there, we took advantage of the plentiful port-a-potties and then had about 45 min to kill until race time. We gawked at the crowds, tried to stay warm (it was chilly when you weren't moving, at 52 degrees (11C)!), and chatted with each other and Coach Dave.

The gun went off, but we couldn't hear it w/the huge crowd. We were in the 10-12 minute/mile starting corral, and it took us 13 minutes to get to the start! That's a LOT of people. Once we crossed the start, we were up to speed amazingly quickly, though the sheer number of runners still prevented us from going more than an 11:15 mile for the first mile or so (which was a good thing since I wanted to start conservatively). My heart rate was surprisingly high for this pace (140-145), but I chalked it up to adrenaline. However, when we completed miles 2, 3, and 4 at the same pace with the same HR, I realized that I was possibly going to have a slowish race today. I'm not sure why, because I was very well-trained, and my training walks all went much faster at the same HR, and I also had the advantage of training at 4300 feet for a race at sea level. Weird. Mile 5 had a pretty good hill, and I was feeling a bit sluggish, so I took my first gel about 55 min into the race. That perked me up and I felt pretty good but miles 6-10 had hills. LOTS of big hills. UP a lot, down a little, UP a lot, down a little, and UP some more. Whew. Oh, and we had a 3 min potty stop at mile 6 or so (2 min waiting in line - women just are not too speedy, and the race was all women, so there were long lines until about mile 8 - I would have waited longer had I known that the lines got much shorter; oh well). My heart rate was very high for a lot of this part of the race (150s), and I probably should have taken it a little easier, but I was wanting to stay with my runner teammate (good company) and I was nervous about my slow pace. The sheer number of runners did slow the pace considerably in many places, especially going up the hills when the slower walkers did not move to the right (grrrr!).

After mile 10, things got easier, course-wise. Mile 10-11 was a nice big downhill to the Great Highway and then a left into Golden Gate Park. There was another hill in the park - very long, but relatively gentle, from miles 11-13.5 or so. Though it was gentle, it did challenge me mentally, so I told my iPod to play my power song. I had made a recording of myself reading my supporters' well-wishes from my TNT web page, and made that my power song. It REALLY helped SO much (in fact, I listened to this at least 3 times during the race, and each time it motivated me a lot). I thought of my dad a lot, and why I was doing this race, and each time it stirred me to dig deeper.

My half marathon split was in the neighborhood of 2:22 or 2:24, so I knew that making 4:45 for the whole race (my goal coming into today) might be tough. I knew that I had gone out a bit hard for miles 6-10, so negative splits would be very difficult to achieve, so I figured this was going to be a challenging finish. It was. The good side of this is that at least my GI system behaved itself - I had one minor cramp at about 2:38 into the race, and then no trouble at all for the rest of the time!

Loren and his mom and aunt were supposed to meet me at mile 11.25 or so, but their shuttle was slow and they didn't make it. He texted me that he couldn't be there and would see me at mile 16. At mile 16, I didn't see him, and got a bit stressed. I called him and the connection was terrible. I went to about 16.2 (or more?) and didn't see him and knew it wasn't good. Coach Dave was with me from about mile 15.8 to this point, and he asked me if I wanted him to talk to Loren (I was shouting at Loren because I couldn't hear and was distressed and stressed out); relieved, I handed him the phone and he sorted it out and told Loren and his mom that we'd come back a little but they should move toward us. I felt I really had to backtrack to see his mom & aunt because they had driven 3 hours to see me in the race and had missed me at mile 11. So I went back to mile 16, and no one was there. I stood by the sign and called Loren again, and Dave came up and told me he had found them, a little further on (about 16.1). I continued on and to my great relief, I found them! Yay! It was great to see all of them, even though I was dismayed at the loss of time (no excuses, though! I chose to go back!). I probably lost 5 min or so, but oh well. I was SO grateful to Coach Dave for his help - he went above and beyond the call of duty today.

I kept on going, and fortuitously, at mile 16.5 or so, I ran into my teammate Shawna. I was glad to see her, and it wouldn't have happened had I not backtracked, so it was good in a weird sort of way. Her knees were very painful (IT band problems) and I hope I encouraged her a little. It was good to see her, but about mile 17.5 she had to walk slowly because of her knees and we wished each other good luck and I continued on.

This is where the race started to get a bit painful. It was chilly with a headwind, and though my body, arms, and legs were OK, my hands were pretty cold. I had given Coach Diane my gloves because she didn't have hers (not sure why now) and I didn't think I'd need them (the race weather, overcast and low to upper 50s, with a light-moderate wind, was actually great and not a factor for me overall). I didn't miss the gloves much, until this point, and had I had them, I would have given them to Loren at mile 16 anyway. The real problem, though, was that I was getting tired. My legs were fatiguing, but I kept pushing on, though not too hard since I knew I still had 9 miles to go. My heart rate for this flat part was about 145 most of the time. The ocean view was nicer than I thought & I was able to see it a lot of the time despite the sand dunes between the road and the beach. That was motivating, but it was still kind of a dull stretch of the race from here to the finish.

Going around Lake Merced was tough. When I got to mile 20, I knew I only had 10k to go and tried to pick the pace up a bit. I passed some teammates who were early start (slower) walkers, and that encouraged me to see them. I was pretty uncomfortable but knew I could push it a bit. I had to focus a lot and it was hard to think and grit it out through the discomfort. I paid attention to every milestone and just kept going, relentlessly. Loren texted me two encouraging messages during this part of the race, and that helped to keep me going. About mile 23 I knew there was just a little over 5k to go, so I kept thinking "only 5K - you can do this", and I sped up to where my heart rate was in the mid-150s. It was a little discouraging to see the clock, though - it was at 4:38 when I reached mile 23 (which minus the 13 minutes it took me to get to the start was 4:25). I knew it would be tough to do that last 5k in 35 minutes. Normally an easy 5K takes me about 32:30 w/HR of 135-140, but at the end of the marathon, at HR of 155ish, I figured that 35 min was pushing it. This was a little bit of a surprise, because in my 22-miler I finished very strong, with the last 5k pretty fast (not sure how fast, but I know it was lots faster than 35 min).

But today it was not meant to be. I had several other problems during the race: 1) starting at mile 11 I had pain in the back of my R knee when fully extended; I've had this before but not usually until the very end of my longer walks, and 2) surprisingly, I had some exercise-induced asthma. I have experienced the latter a few times (maybe 3-4?) in my life, but never while racewalking. I'm not sure why this happened today. Maybe the humidity here? Maybe the anxiety about the race (but I've been more anxious about other races!)? I have no idea, but starting about mile 16 or so, I had some trouble. When I took it easier from miles 16-20ish, it wasn't so bad, but at the finish (miles 24-26.2) when I was really pushing to finish under 5 hours, it got pretty bad.

Continuing my story, miles 23-24 were tough. I was pushing hard, my R knee hurt, and my legs were quite fatigued. I knew I could do it, though, so I just kept going. The asthma really started kicking in and I had to back off a little, but I saw Coach Diane about mile 25 and she ran alongside me. She listened to me tell her how I was (tired, wheezy, and pushing to get under 5 hrs) and she just accompanied me, mostly in silence. It was SO good to have her company, even though she didn't say much. I truly appreciated her presence with me. At one point, I got very wheezy and she told me to breathe from my abdomen. I couldn't. It just would NOT work that way. I had to slow a bit, but when it eased, I continued pushing for the finish. She left me in sight of the finish (0.3 miles?) and within 0.1 mile, Coach Dave saw me and ran in with me; he was very encouraging as well. I drove so hard to that finish, and I really gave it my all. I don't really see how I could have given more this race. I'm not even sure I would change things if I had to do it again - I know I pushed too hard in the early-middle miles, but even in hindsight it seems like that was necessary in some ways.

I digress. The finish was beautiful. Even though the clock said 5:13:11 or something like that (which minus 13:00 is still a bit over 5 hrs, which disappointed me) I was SO GLAD TO BE DONE. After crossing the finish, the tuxedo-clad firemen extended Tiffany boxes at me - in fact about 3 of them. I had to pick which one to take the box from! They were all very attractive so it was quite fun to have them "fighting" for the honor of handing me the box :). After choosing a box, I had the chip cut off my shoe, got a warming foil blanket thingy, got my T-shirt, and picked up a Jamba Juice smoothie (the only thing that really looked good to me!). I checked in at the TNT tent, got my 26.2 pin from them, and then found Loren and his mom & aunt. We had fun opening the Tiffany box, catching up on the day's happenings, and enjoying the post-race atmosphere.

I then caught sight of the results tent, and decided to see if I could find out my chip time. I got on the computer there, and was delighted to see that it was 4:59:49!!! I had made it! All that pushing had paid off!

I didn't get very emotional at the finish, even though I thought I might. I was just relieved to have done it, even though I was a bit disappointed in my speed. All the same, I was proud of the way I conquered some adverse conditions by mental toughness, and of the way I pushed at the end and finished under 5 hrs.

Thank you to all my supporters for your encouraging words on the TNT web page that got me through the tough patches, and thanks for the many e-mails and prayers and other forms of support. I feel very loved!

P.S. The rest of the day was fun, too - Loren's mom and aunt took us to a late lunch/early dinner at Fisherman's Wharf. Yum! Since then I've been relaxing and working on my photos and this blog.

P.P.S. There are pictures of the race on the next few posts - if you click "Tammy's Tidbits" at the top and scroll down you can see them.

Later in the day

Loren's mom and aunt at Fisherman's Wharf.
Me & Loren at Fisherman's Wharf.

the finish

Limo with Tiffany necklaces (the finisher's medals).
My shirt with ribbons in honor/memory of my supporters' loved ones.
Happy finisher.
I'm a marathoner, and wearing my necklace proudly.

Along the way - part 2

Talking on the phone to try & find my husband and in-laws at mile 16 (ironically, he was RIGHT THERE, taking my photo!!!); my coach is next to me. 
Walking and waving - mile 16.
Lake Merced - mile 19ish.
The home stretch - walking in with my coach - mile 26.1 (grainy photo - camera misbehaving for Loren!)

Along the way

The Transamerica building, the Golden Gate Bridge, descent to the Great Highway, and waterfall in Golden Gate Park.

Race start

In the elevator before walking to the start line, with teammates at the start, the crowd at the start, and the starting line.

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Quick post before the race

Today was a low-key day, as planned. Easy 20 min walk, then breakfast & shower, then a streetcar ride to Fisherman's Wharf/Ghirardelli Square. We bought LOTS of chocolate, a Giants jersey for Loren, and I dropped my camera :(. At first it didn't work at all, because the retractable lens was slightly bent. I managed to get it to work again, and with some finagling it seems to be mostly OK except for some scratches, and the occasional tendency to pause when you zoom in all the way. ARRRGH!

After the camera incident, we ate a light lunch at Boudin's (1/2 turkey sandwich, no mayo, w/lettuce & tomato; spring salad w/apples, walnuts, cranberries & viniagrette) and then took an extremely crowded streetcar back to the hotel. We took a 45 min nap and then it was time to get ready for the pasta party.

The pasta party, briefly, was surprisingly inspirational. I expected it to be pretty over-the-top cheesy, but it wasn't. John Bingham, columnist for Runner's World ("The Penguin"), was the hilarious MC, and he told some terrific stories & jokes and introduced Joan Benoit Samuelson, the 1984 women's Olympic gold medalist in the marathon. She gave a brief but tremendous pep talk to us. John Bingham returned with some more jokes and then turned the podium over to a cancer survivor who told us her very moving story (she continues to fight the disease, and faces and uncertain future; she's a little younger than me and has 2 young children, as I do).

No pictures right now because I need to get some serious sleep. I feel ready, though, and I'm excited to do 26.2!

Descending to the Great Highway

This was taken from the car, so not a great shot, but this is the race course descending to the Great Highway. 

Gee, it's going to be rough doing a race with views like this

At the race expo

View from our hotel room

Mono Lake


Marge has been my close friend since we worked together at Invitrogen, 15 years ago.  It was so good to see her again!

At the Golden Gate Bridge

Hah!  Figured out how to circumvent the photo uploading problem, for the moment.

San Francisco Day 1

Unfortunately, I can't upload any pictures yet.  I have some great ones, but the hotel's bandwidth doesn't seem up to the task.  GRRR!  So, text only for now...

Our flight was pretty uneventful, except for a great view of Mono Lake at sunrise.  We arrived in Oakland early (7:30 am!) and took the team shuttle to the hotel (Holiday Inn Civic Center).  We were allowed to check into our rooms early (yay!) and they actually gave me and Loren a room on the 14th floor (top floor), which has the executive rooms.  I'm guessing they ran out of regular rooms?  The rest of the team is on the 9th floor.  Anyway, our room was stocked with a complimentary gift bag with bottled water, honey roasted peanuts, and cookies.  Not bad.

After unpacking a little we walked over to Union Square for packet pickup for the race.  It was very organized, and we only had to wait in line for about 10 minutes before getting my packet.  They had free engraving for your iPod, with the Nike Women's Marathon logo & the date, so of course I had to do that :).  They had free manicures, massages, etc. at the expo, but we didn't have much time for that, because we were going to meet my brother and his wife for lunch.  So, after picking up a souvenir shirt and hoodie at the Niketown store, we walked back to the hotel to drop off our stuff.

BART (Bay Area Rapid Transit - commuter rail in SF) is less than a block from our hotel, so we hopped on a train to Berkeley, and Alex & Erica met us at the station and drove us to a really yummy Mediterranean restaurant called The Pomegranate.  Interestingly enough, Alex & Erica have a pomegranate tree in their yard in Davis (an hour's drive from Berkeley), and they brought us two fresh pomegranates to enjoy this weekend :).  We dined on great appetizers (hummus, tzatziki, tabbouleh, and fresh flatbread), and shared a lovely chicken in pomegranate sauce (what else?!?) with mashed potatoes & fresh steamed veggies.  Delicious!  It was fantastic to catch up with Alex & Erica, and we enjoyed the leisurely lunch and conversation.

After taking BART back to the hotel, we relaxed for about 45 minutes before my friend Marge, who lives about an hour south in Half Moon Bay, picked us up for a little city tour and dinner.  We drove all around the marathon course, and it is SO BEAUTIFUL.  I wish I could share the pictures with you now, but you'll just have to wait.  The first 16 miles of the course are truly spectacular, from the cityscape to the Embarcadero, to Fisherman's Wharf, to the Golden Gate Bridge, to the beach, and through Golden Gate Park.  The last 10 are not as exciting; though scenic, not spectacular as you wind down the Great Highway along the beach.  The problem is that you can't see the beach much from the road because of the sand dunes, so it will surely be a bit monotonous here.  The route then goes around Lake Merced, which again is pretty but not as thrilling as the earlier scenery.  The finish is just west of Golden Gate Park on the Great Highway, and it was interesting to see the Finish Village as they were setting up the tents, etc.  It was huge - at least 10 very very large tents (maybe more) were visible, along with the finish line arch, which will be moved over the road before the race.  It was GREAT to see the race course and catch up with Marge; the conversation and the tour of the city was delightful.

Our race course and city tour over, we drove to Nob Hill for dinner at an amazing little Italian restaurant called Nob Hill Cafe.  We were lucky to find a parking spot only 3 blocks away, and walked up and down some serious San Francisco hills to get there.  It was a small, casual restaurant, but the food was some of the best Italian I've had (and I love Italian food!).  The lasagna Marge ordered was to die for - the sauce had an unique flavor and aroma which was delectable; I'm not sure what the magic ingredient was, but I'd love to know.  Loren's fettucine with pesto was flavorful without being heavy (how did they do THAT?), and my tomato and basil pasta was equally delicious.  The foccacia bread had a tangy and savory flavor that had us asking for another basket.  I was thinking that it would have been better if I had worked out today.  I was within maintenance points for the week, barely, but I am thinking I'll be lucky not to gain this week with all the great food, marathon or no marathon.  One week is only a blip, though, as long as I return to my healthy habits at home.

Marge drove us the mile or so back to our hotel from the restaurant, and we didn't waste any time retiring, as it was 9:30 pm and we'd gotten up at about 3:30 am Pacific time - long day!  I wish I could say I slept well, but I woke at 4 am and couldn't get back to sleep.  It's now 6 am and I'm going to try & snooze a little more before the team workout at 8:30 am.  On to day 2!

Thursday, October 16, 2008


Yay! I found my iPod. It got buried under one of my husband's shirts as I was packing. Whew. Big sigh of relief.

Easy tempo workout; lost my iPod :(

I did my Thursday tempo workout, but this one was really easy. 15 min warm-up, 10 minutes of tempo (HR 155-160 most of the time) and then 15 min cool down. It was really easy, and my dog Sahara even managed to keep up (though she was starting to have a lot of trouble at the end of the fast 10 min). I went around SugarHouse Park and back home in 38:19 (6k total).

Annoying news. I have LOST my iPod. Sometime between this morning's workout and tonight (I'm now packing for my trip), I lost it. I took the kids to trick-or-treat at This is the Place State Park and I wonder if I dropped it there? I doubt it, though, because I'm pretty sure I never even took it this morning. The last place I remember seeing it was on top of our pantry by the side door. I remember NOT taking it trick-or-treating because I knew I wouldn't need it. This is really frustrating because 1) I was so excited about recording my marathon racewalk on it and uploading it, 2) I was going to have it engraved (free!) at the race expo, and 3) it will be $150 to replace it, if I decide to do that. ARRRRRGH! Maybe it will show up, but I won't have it for race weekend :(. Fortunately, I do have another mp3 player, so I will be able to have music for the race if I want. Still, this is SO SO SO SO SO SO irritating! And now I've wasted 30 min of precious sleep looking for the #$(*&^ thing. I give up. Off to bed.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Short easy speed work

Monday - REST DAY. I didn't like resting, but I did it. It was hard to not eat too much when I didn't work out. But I really want to make sure I take it easy enough this week. All part of the game.

Today - I did an easy walk to the track in about 20 min. Then I did 4x400m in 2:18, 2:19, 2:17, and 2:12. I wasn't pushing too hard except on the last one, and even then I didn't push that much (I was having fun!). I felt like I'd hardly done anything, so I walked home easy, in about 18.5 min (downhill vs uphill on the way there). I could get used to this kind of speed workout :).

Tomorrow - I have an easy 30 minutes planned. I might do 40 min so I can at least go around SugarHouse or Liberty Park - I love doing park routes.

Only five days until the big race!!!!!

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Hard to believe it was 70 a few days ago!

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Snowy scene in SugarHouse Park

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Snow on the rose garden

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Snow in SugarHouse Park

The scenery this morning as I was leaving the park. Not bad!

First snow!

This was me this morning on my walk, with my dogs. It did snow a few inches, as promised, though it melted by midday. It was beautiful this morning, and I enjoyed my ~6k in about 39:30. It was not sticking to the road, so it was no problem walking. It was actively snowing, so I did get a little wet, but not too bad. It was a pleasure to be outside, regardless.

Loren was thrilled, because today is his birthday, and he loves snow. To have the first snow of the season on his birthday was a treat for him.
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Saturday, October 11, 2008

Calvin's first race!

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Race photo

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Race photo

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Wasatch Walkers/USATF Utah judged 3k racewalk

Today was our club race. We had a great time! The weather was cold and windy, but it waited to rain until just after the race.

We had a good turnout from the club, but I'm sure it would have been better had the weather forecast been more positive. It's supposed to SNOW tonight and I actually did see a few snowflakes at the race start.

I brought Calvin with me to the race, and I paid the $10 to enter him, because I knew he'd be able to walk 3k and I figured he'd have a great time. He did! And the group was so good to him, too.

I wasn't expecting a great race for myself, because I've been training for the marathon next weekend, but I was pleasantly surprised at how well I did. There was a little confusion on my part about the race course. It was a loop course and you had to do 2.75 loops, and I got confused about where the finish was, loop-wise. But I figured it out when I got near the finish and it was only 13:33 on my watch - I knew I had more to go, so I did one more half loop and that turned out to be exactly the right thing to do.

I was breathing really hard all the way, though I think I could have pushed a little harder, especially if I was more comfortable w/the course. But I'm glad I didn't push harder with the marathon next weekend, so it's all good. Besides, this is my first 3k race, so I was guaranteed a PR no matter how I did!

I finished in 16:53, for an average of 5:38 per km. Not too shabby for someone training for a marathon, which is the polar opposite of this race.

When I finished, I walked the rest of the race with Calvin, who finished in 28:47. Admittedly, he was not walking the whole way - he sort of walk-jogs, and it's cute. No one minded, though, and 28:47 for a 4-year-old is downright great. He was very pleased with his gold medal and the hot chocolate at the end of the race.

There are lots more pictures and videos here.

Friday, October 10, 2008

8 at marathon pace

Today I had 8 miles at marathon pace on my to-do list. I ended up doing 7.65 (Liberty + SH Parks) because I was up a bit late this morning - didn't hear my alarm or something. I was going to take it at a 10:30 pace, but I also wanted my HR to be in the low 140s, so I ended up doing the 7.65 in 1:19:00, which was a 10:20 pace. I know that's faster than I'll do the race, but what the heck. It was a fun workout and I felt pretty good the whole time. Seems weird to have this be my long day for the week. I know I need the rest but I do miss the challenge of the longer distances.

Thursday, October 09, 2008

Wed & Thurs workouts

Wednesday - easy 1.5 miles and then weight training. I did the leg press again, with even more weight this week. I'm a little sore today, but not as bad as last week. Must be getting used to the new machine.

Thursday - 45 minute acceleration tempo workout. I did 10 min at HR 135-140, then 10 min at 145-150, then 10 min at 150-155, then 10 min at 155-160, then 5 min at 160-165. Cooled down for 6 min or so (until I got home; I did 2 loops of SugarHouse Park) for a total of 5.1 miles in 51:00. Pretty speedy! This workout felt 1) pretty short and 2) pretty easy (!). Guess I must be ready. I feel like I've been so lazy - I guess that's what a taper feels like?

I was going to do 8 miles on Sunday morning, because on Saturday we have a Wasatch Walkers 3k race. However, it's supposed to SNOW on Sunday morning, believe it or not, so I think I will do my 8 miles tomorrow instead. Then the race on Saturday, and on Sunday I may do some cross training or something - either at a gym (I still plan to join the county parks & recreation, but haven't needed to yet) or at home (a video).

Tuesday, October 07, 2008

Tuesday track workout

I worked out this morning in the dark at the track near my house, because I knew I'd have the kids tonight. Loren wanted to go to pub night w/some guys from church, and I wanted him to go, too, so I did my track workout this morning.

I was to do 3x1600m at 10K pace. I warmed up and was feeling good so I did 9:21, 9:16, and 9:19 for my 1600s. That was a little faster than 10K pace (only by a few seconds) but what the heck, I felt all right. I did have some stomach cramping this morning and can't figure out what I ate yesterday to cause it. I probably didn't watch the lactose as closely as I should have.

Tonight I took the kids over to the track for the team workout, but I only wanted to chat with everyone about our club race on Saturday. We're having a 3k judged race, and it's going to be a great time! Obviously I'm not going to be very fast for that because I've been training for a marathon and my speedwork has been geared to longer distances. All the same, it will be fun to get out there and race.

Monday, October 06, 2008

Things I really enjoy

-fitting into the same pants I wore last season! Most of my life I haven't been able to do this because I tend to gain, and gain some more, and gain some more. It was a delight to pull out my jeans from the spring (after wearing shorts and capris most of the summer) and have them still fit :)!
-wearing clothes until they wear out rather than discarding them after I grow out of them from gaining weight.
-great conversation with good friends. I enjoyed coffee and chatting with Sarah tonight for a few hours, and it was heavenly. So good to have adult conversation about interesting topics with a friend I have a lot in common with.
-playing great music. Sarah and I are planning to start playing more music again. I really have missed it lately and want to play again! My Steinway is calling to me :)!
-a good morning racewalk at an easy pace when I need to clear my head.
-baking delicious treats and sharing them with friends and family.
-unwinding with a great book. Reading is one of my favorite pleasures.

Sunday, October 05, 2008

Easy SugarHouse Park walk

This morning it was raining lightly but I NEEDED to get out for a walk. I took the dogs and we did an easy loop of SugarHouse Park, in about 39 minutes. Other than the wet dog smell in the house afterwards, it was a great walk :).

A concert

Calvin and friends serenade us on the piano.
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Cake times three!

Katie, Calvin, and Dana eat lots of cake. Mmmmm!
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"Hell" and "Damn" with the legos

"Hell" and "Damn" are enjoying Calvin's new legos on Saturday at Calvin's birthday party (see post a few below for an explanation of these names)!
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