Saturday, May 28, 2011

Red Hills Festival 5k Race Recap: 1st. 3 weeks out from marathon debut.

Red Hills Festival 5K Road Race in Louisville, MS.
17:48, 1st female, $200 (and a trophy bigger than my Maddy!)
Recovery Training Week
Monday:60-70 minute run (can't remember)
Tuesday: 35 min warm up, 30 minutes at half marathon pace (6:10-6:20 pace, 4 mile split, 24:50), max of 8 min cool down (ran out of time) - sick w/ diaphragm cramp
Wednesday: OFF- AM: 20 min bike, PM: 30 min bike
Thursday: AM: 20min, PM: 70 minute run (diaphragm cramp at 40 minutes) 6 ish X 1 min at 10K pace (awful run)
Friday: AM 20 minutes (treadmill broke) PM: 26minutes (diaphragm cramp)
Saturday: 3 miles at 7:00min pace, 5K road race in 17:48, 60 minute cool down
Sunday: Planned easy run 45-60 minutes

Well, that weeks over.
Ok so, some negatives this week on the running part... forgive me for this...the dehydration/diaphragm cramp from last Saturday basically hung around all week. On top of that, I got my 9th sinus infection since Jan of last year (when I got pregnant with Maddy) so that didn't help anything. Tuesday I was suppose to do 40 minutes at 7:00, 30 minutes at half marathon pace. It took me over 30 minutes just to get my legs going (yes it was 4:45 am, but still!) the tempo portion was not difficult, but I felt sick, tired, chest cramp. I decided to take Wednesday off. Thursday I got a sitter (Houston was gone to Regionals all week) and ran in the afternoon. I ended up having to jog portions of this run because of the damn chest cramp AGAIN. Completely frustrated, I ran super easy Friday...but the cramp still lingered.
Then I had a melt down.
I know right? Seriously, I don't even know what about. I mean everything and anything came crashing down, it was pathetic! I have so much going for me, I need to stop freaking over spilled coffee and being 2 minutes late for work!!! I cannot stand it when people don't know what they got. I have EVERYTHING. Boohoo...so my running wasn't going well, SUCK IT UP!
....I guess it is important for me to say one of the main reasons why I run (why we all run) is because it keeps me from going crazy. I have (like everyone) major problems with anxiety, and an obsession for schedules and numbers. Running feeds into this obsession, if I don't get my Garmin fix in the morning, I'm going to have issues for the rest of the day. Being that Houston was gone all week and I had to take days off/ alter me regular running schedule...made me a complete psycho. After getting in a good bit of running Saturday... I was back to my normal self again.
Sort of.





My friend Timmy and me after the race!!!Love Timmy!



SOooo about this race. Like what the hell? I know, I know. Training for a Marathon- 5k does not correlate. Well...I wanted to run this race for a few months, and didn't fully commit until pulling out of the drive way at Maddy's sitters Saturday Morning. I had had an awful running week dealing with cramp and all that other B.S., I needed a little confidence boost ( yeah, a 5k when your training for a marathon, how is that going to help confidence???Smart idea....) so I decided, lets run this 5k and see what I got in the tank right now. (ok, stupid)
So I drove the 30 minutes to Louisville, paid my 25 dollar entry and went on a 3+ mile run of the course before the race started. My legs still felt heavy and the temps were creeping up higher by the minute...it is summer in Mississippi, it is damn hot. BUT...looking around before the start I realized I could make history for myself (win overall PERSON) and made a decision...
Houston once told me...You can either run safe and run for time (i.e. be patient early, work the middle, run a good last mile)
OR
You can run for the win and risk killing your race completely......
Yes, yes... and he adds...but a win is a win!
One thing about racing to win- don't let the people you are trying to beat get away from you. And being that patience is not really a strong area for me, I went out (chasing "knee brace" and "Timmy" for the win) guns a blazing- 5:26, (2:45 through the 800m)
I know your thinking, hey that’s not too bad! What gives, I'm not following???.... WELL 5:26 is too fast for me 3 weeks out from the Winnipeg Marathon. (Marathon training here...) I have not done enough V02 work to maintain that type of pace through 3 miles.
Ha, but then I took the lead and tried to maintain.
Here's a little brain recap.
Mile 1- 5:26
Alright girl, your feeling good and you gotta maintain. If you want to win this one, go after it! Only 2 miles to go... 11 minutes or so, get it going!!! This race is yours! ....Oh Lord, this is going to HURT!
2nd mile 5:37
Uh oh, my hip is getting tight, I slowed down some...I can't get my legs going--gotta push! ...Shouldn't have wore these new flats! WHAT WAS I THINKING? Oh shut up, you only have a mile left, keep it up!...OMG, I am going to puke....
---2nd place, knee brace, catches BACK up with me with about 1000m remaining, and yells "Your a BEAST!" ....thanks knee brace, I'm am going to hang off you and out kick you at the end, hope you don't mind!----
Last mile + (you do the math, I already did.)
Holy crap, my chest is cramping bad, what, is that the finish??Already? YES!!! I'M KICKING....I'm...I'm....I'm winning, WINNING!!!!!WINNING IT.....I GOT YOU KNEE BRACE....oh...uh oh...wait...no...no...damn it!!! DAMN, HE GOT ME!
So knee brace found another gear about 20 meters from the finish. At first I thought I had him, but obviously not. BY this time I felt like I was going to vomit up my lungs any way.. and was really just happy that this race was over with.
I then spent the next 15 minutes trying to walk/jog the cramp out of my chest, and then...once I got to a point it was manageable...continued to run the rest of my hour cool down.
Positive--even though this race was VERY BADLY executed...I am 3 weeks out from the Winnipeg marathon. Marathon training mode!!!. I was going to be happy with much worse,..I'll take a 17:48 on the Roads!!!! It will be nice to see what I can late in the summer when I start training for the short stuff! Nice.





Wow. Some healthy post-race options here!






Look at this trophy! Seriously, it’s like I ran a national championship or something! So big I could not get the whole thing in the picture…and I tried a few times. Trophy had it’s own seat back to Starkville.






Plan for my long weekend? Play with Maddy girl!!! She just went for a big swim in the tub and is having a nice little nap. Love my weekends with Maddy !
Happy running, all!
Megg.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Just For Fun: During Pregnancy and After Pictures

I just saw these and they made me laugh.
Pregnancy was the most amazing experience for me. Aside from 9 months of feeling like I was riding a roller coaster immediately after eating a double cheese burger, I was constantly amazed at the changes of my body and the little Maddy growing inside.


Enjoy!

35 weeks
























39 weeks versus 7 months p.p.























7 months after- Me and My Maddy


















6 1/2 months after - Me and My Maddy!
(actually, this is Maddy at 5 months, but it is sweet!)



Saturday, May 21, 2011

Marathon Simulator FAIL! Valuable hydration lesson learned.

Weekends = Fun day with Maddy! Look at her waving! Another milestone. There truly is NOTHING better than being a Mom.













Training Week in Review:
Sunday: 60 min super easy
Monday:70 min run
Tuesday:72 min run
Wednesday: 2 mile w/u, 3mile/2mile/1mile at tempo, 3min recovery in between. Results from Garmin: (17:59 for 3miles (5:59 pace)/11:50 for 2, 5:55 pace/ 5:14 for 1 (5:14 pace)
Thursday: 65 min run (achilles)
Friday:55 minutes easy (achilles)
Saturday: 2 mile w/u, 12 miles at goal marathon pace:
6:42, 6:44, 6:43, 6:44, 6:44, 6:43, 6:43, 6:39, 6:36, 6:47, 6:47, 6:56, got super dehydrated at 12 so called it quits early, jogged 30 min home, see below for details.
Sunday: Planned 70 min run

What a week..... My coach had his second open heart surgery, but my sister-in-law was also missing for 2 days. Both Coach and sister are OK at this point, and please forgive me if I choose not to comment further on either. Thank you all for your prayers and kind words.

My husband was home (!!) and my father returned to Starkville for two days mid-week so Houston ran Wednesday's workout with Micah, David, and I, as well as Saturday's planned 16 mile Marathon simulator (thanks, yes he is amazing). Wednesday's workout went well and I didn't feel labored at all, and was way under pace the whole damn time. Do keep in mind that with the exception of the last mile, this workout was ran with garmin. The last mile - 5:14- was ran on the last mile of mugshots which I don't think is entirely accurate- but its still on the roads so who cares..

I was so damn ready for Saturday once it rolled around. Probably a little over confident now that I look back.... I didn't eat much dinner (filled up on chocolate) or take enough fluid the night before. That morning during my short warm up, I could already feel the temps quickly climbing above 70 degrees (just got hotter from there), and basically 100% humidity. I should have taken note...

I was a freak about this workout, I ran with Garmin on a two looped course out at Boardtown- one I had ran over 100 times before. I knew every mile marker, and being that I had my Garmin, I knew this run would be 100% accurate, I need 100% accuracy, I am a psycho about it. It drives Houston crazy....and it should, I am crazy.

I put water glasses out so we could easily grab them without stopping, and carried gel in my shorts. This craziness ended up biting me in the ass in the end! I was so consumed with keeping a 6:45 pace, I neglected to take enough fluids early and opted out of a few of the times I had planned to take gel. I was feeling like I was out for a Sunday stroll, and was confident I could drop the pace down to 6:25 or better for the last 5 miles. However, once I hit 10 miles, things started going down hill quickly. First I started to feel cold, then dizzy, then my diaphragm and chest cramped up... and I knew dehydration was setting in. Once I got to 12 I was just doing more damage then good, so we called it a day and jogged home.

At first I was extremely disappointed, but looking back at my training I have done this workout many many times before in some shape/form or fashion. Also, once I got re-hydrated and rested up, my achilles and legs felt pretty damn good, so maybe it was meant to be. Lack of a super hard Saturday may just help me nip this achilles problem in the ass.

I must give mad props to my running friends. Once again I am amazed how people continuously train for marathons and run the damn things successfully. I am training for the first one- and once again I can't get the nutrition aspect right. Being a northerner, I have always had problems with hydrating enough. Also, I have never been one to over-consume, I think over-planning meals is a waste of time (please, no one take offense to this, more power to you if you can make the time to prepare lovely meals for you and yours, the oven just doesn't bake fast enough for me)---not really a healthy outlook, but that is just the way we roll in the Frank's household.

So the next few weeks will shift my focus to some of the non-running things that may make my marathon successful. Sleeping more, drinking more, and being more aware of how much nutrition I am truly taking in. In the end, it wont be the pace that will kill my race, it will either be the hip or dehydration. (Oh and the hip was tight for 3 miles, given that I had it reset twice this week, I think that was not a bad result).

Anyways, I am past this morning. Being that my husband is here all weekend, we are going to do our best to just enjoy our family time! Not track meets, no practice, just Maddy, Daddy, and Mommy and a whole bunch of quality time! Nothing better!

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

The only man I still call "Coach".

Last Thursday in Athens, GA, my Coach (former college coach) went into cardiac arrest twice. He fell into the arms of Steve, the head coach at state, and my husband, the head xc Coach at Mississippi State, during warm-ups at the GA track. Moments later my husband called me in a state of panic. I grabbed my keys, picked up Maddy, and drove through the night with Coach Al’s wife and daughter....we arrived around 4:00am. I spent the next few days watching the SEC Track and Field meet and visiting with him. He is alive and doing much better and he is scheduled to undergo open-heart surgery Thursday. This will not be his first rodeo so please keep him in your prayers.


When I came to the realization that I had almost lost the one and only man that I call COACH (I don’t even call Houston “Coach”, and he respects that) I realize just how much I take my relationship and the memories I have with him for granted. Before Al I was a lost and lonely high school athlete that had obsessively ran twice a day everyday for almost 2 years trying to find a way to “run” away from home. I succeeded only because Al took a chance on me. Though I was never as successful in college as I wanted to be, I definitely had a very successful college career only because he believed that I was capable of everything, and like myself, he was never satisfied.


This man has been a mentor for me since day one. I was compulsive, irresponsible, mean, and self-centered. I may be all those things still, but he took me in and helped me establish some sort of direction in life, and in a way, he became a father-figure being that I was over 3000 miles away from home at the time.


Though our relationship was rocky at times, it was the best relationship I had with anyone going through college. Coach now calls himself “Grandpa Al” as he happily pushers Maddy around the track in her stroller any chance he gets.



I know this is selfish, but I CAN’T lose Coach. Too often STILL do I come to him for support. I have cried so many times in his office then I can remember. And thought I have yelled, screamed, and cursed at him- he never holds in against me. Because in the end he knew we both were just trying to be successful.



My best memory in College- and boy do I have many- Is probably of my senior year at state. This was one of my worst years ever. Though I was plagued with injuries all through college, I had over-trained (not a new thing here) throughout the summer, fall, and spring only to enter the outdoor season tired and hurt again. My back and hamstring never responded to treatment the entire year. The morning before the SEC meet I couldn’t even run 10 minutes on my hamstring. We had spent weeks trying to get me just to the point that I could race- just finish! I could not warm up the morning of my race and highly doubted that my pulled hamstring would allow me to finish. I spent 4 hours listening to “clocks” by cold play and praying to God, “Just give me ONE MORE RACE”. And I truly believe to this day there was someone out there on the track with me, because I would later learn just how out of shape I really was. I wanted nothing more than to score just one more point for the team, JUST ONE! JUST GIVE ME ONE MORE POINT. And as I stepped on the track that night, I truly committed to running this race or dying right there. If finishing meant death, then surely that would be the end of me. And thus I ran the best race of my life, not the fastest and not my highest finish, but by golly it was with every ounce of my being. – I finished 7th, at one point moving from 8th to 4th, and eventually back to 7th as my fitness finally caught up with me. So yes, I got my last two points ever. Not my best, but given the situation, I couldn’t ask for a better outcome.


Coach walked up to me after the race and said, “J.C. girl you are one of the best big racers we have ever had. I don’t know where you got it today, but thank you. It’s been a damn pleasure.” And with that, I realized it was truly the end of the most amazing five years of my life. (at that point in time).



Today, I take all the lessons he taught me and I pass those on to the kids I coach, I find myself repeating some of the same things he said to me. I tell them, “YOU will give up on yourself well before I give up on you, I will never EVER give up on you.”



And therefore, Coach, I will never give up on you either. I know there is a hell of a fighter in you- because that same fighter is now in me. Good luck tomorrow.



Megg

Saturday, May 14, 2011

5 weeks out from Winnipeg Marathon

Monday: 70minutes
Tuesday: 70 minutes
Wednesday: 5X1 mile on roads w/ 2:30-3min rest, 5:40, 5:30, 5:34, 5:29, 5:34 (80minutes)- In training shoes cause of achilles, ended up being a great idea.
Thursday: 52 minutes with Maddy in the jogger
Friday: 70 minutes in Athens, GA
Saturday: 1:40 for 14.6 miles (6:50 pace), last 5 miles at 6:30 pace. Hilly does not do this run justice.

Not a stellar week but...its a week and it was not bad. I had a lot going on this week that I would rather not post about- partly because I was asked not to just yet. It was just a hard week for everyone.... didn't seem to phase Maddy what-so-ever. Who is this child? Seriously, I know she is mine but she is absolutely amazing.

Going to P.T. for the hip and it seems to be helping. 16 miles at goal marathon pace is this Saturday. Wish me luck.

Oh I also, joined HoneyMilk.com. I've got an athlete profile on there somewhere.

BTW, Brooks T6 Racers are some of the best racing flats I have ever put my ski-sized man feet into.
To bad my joints can't handle the pounding just yet to race in them.

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Being a Mom and being an athlete- yes I can and will do both: 6 Weeks out from Marathon.











Training update: 6 weeks out from Winnipeg Marathon

Monday: 70 minutes with M&D

Tuesday: 60 minutes

Wednesday: 2 mile w/u, 8X800m @ 2:36 avg (on road loop) 2 rest, 3 mile cool down, w/M,D,Houston

Thursday: 70 minutes (felt great)

Friday: 60 minutes

Saturday: 21 miles in 2:24:50 (6:53 average for the run as a whole)

splits: 7:43, 7:10, 6:55, 7:02, 6:59, 7:01, 7:12, 7:01, 6:48, 7:01,

7:03, 6:31, 6:43, 6:28, 6:43, 6:43, 6:35, 6:39, 6:43, 6:41, 6:59

*Record setting day! Longest run in my life= 21 miles

In the next few weeks I will attempt a 16 miler at 6:45 pace- this will mean no stopping to take gels/water- I will need to learn to take in fluids and carbohydrate via Houston throwing these at me out the window of the car. ….Wish me luck.

Wednesday’s workout was suppose to be 10X800m w/ 2min rest. This workout was done at 4:45 in the morning on the roads, so I gave myself a few seconds for that. My pace was slow- 2:44-2:48 because I just raced a half- but after running the first 3-4 at a conservative 2:43, I dropped down to 2:30 to average around 2:36 for the whole thing. Besides some tired quads, I felt pretty damn good the whole time. Given the state of my achilles, we cut out the last two and ran a longer cool down.

Saturday’s run was pretty much that same feeling. I ran relaxed early- not sure how I would handle 21 after having raced the Saturday before. After taking Gatorade just after 11 miles, I started to get impatient- I yelled out to M. - “Please don’t think I am an ass hole for running up here alone.” In which he replied, “It’s fine, I know you are all about the numbers.” So I continued to pick up the pace, while garmin quickly took notice…I watched as my clock steadily decreased till I was averaging just under 6:40 for the last 10 miles. I was fairly pleased by this run- but also not excited about the fact that my hip cramped from mile 12-16, and again during the very last mile. My P.T. appointment is Monday. I will be as dedicated as I can to this P.T. I need to get this hip problem taken care of once and for all.

So, it is Mothers Day, and like all Sundays, I am taking the time to reflect and evaluate if I am spending too much time on one area of my life and not enough on others. And as I sit here and type this- Maddy is crawling around on her new floor mat while watching blue’s clues (something about how the potty is fun and clean…thanks but she’s not quite there yet). It’s days like this that I make myself stop and think just how grateful I am to have a healthy child that is so low maintenance (well- somewhat). That I am able to work, sleep, run, and blog about it once a week while she does her own thing (because Maddy is an independent 7 month old- don’t you try to assist her in doing/hold anything!!).

This week I have been over taken with guilt about how I go about my life because my Dad came into town sort of unexpectedly. I didn’t have much time to prepare- so I neglected to make sure everything was clean enough you could eat off it. The state of our home has drastically improved over the last few months, but to some it could be cleaner. To most- it is livable now. For me, it is fine. When I come home after work each day I don’t feel like I am about to have an anxiety attack over dishes in the sink or a dirty floor, and thus I would say I am satisfied. However, the first think my father did was clean the entire second floor- which I think he did to help me out. But deep down I am thinking.. maybe he feels it should have been cleaner???

SO then I go about my week getting up at 4:00AM so that I can run (the one thing that allows me to deal with stress so that I do not have a breakdown over a glass of spilled milk or when Maddy has a paper cut) then proceed to get Maddy out of bed so she can be cleaned, dressed, fed, and her bag packet for daycare on time. All the while Houston and I are running around trying to get ourselves ready (did I remember to eat and brush my hair this morning??). Then we come home at the end of the day, and it’s all Maddy time once again. Don’t get me wrong, I would not have it any other way- but it doesn’t leave a lot of time for laundry and dusty. So these things get done in chunks, not consistently every night.

And though I know there are those around that feel I should give up the running thing all together and focus more on fitting into that traditional motherly role. However, the year is 2011- and Houston and I both work in jobs of similar importance, so screw the traditional role. I cook, he cleans, I tidy the den while he mows the lawn. I don’t feel like anything around the house is owned by me and I often get offended when important documents are addressed to Houston or when people feel like I should be left out of the loop when he scratches his signature on something that will affect us both.

So therefore I stop and realize that it doesn’t matter what anyone else thinks. And if my father (or anyone) thinks ,my relationship with running is unhealthy, well then that is too damn bad. Running, chocolate, and caffeine are the few things that allow me to live the lifestyle I want and if these things cause me to neglect house work- then that is just the way it is going to be.

One thing I will never to is neglect my own daughter- as far as I am concerned Maddy is the very center, everything else just revolves around her. And this I know will never change (only if I have another, then that wee one will also be added to the center).

And lastly, I just want to say thank you to everyone for the comments, text messages, facebook messages, emails, etc. etc. about last week’s race. The course was tough but a win is a win. I just can’t tell you how much it means to me when I am walking around at a race and someone stops me and says “Hey, I read your blog! I think it is inspiring!” Ha! I hope you think it is inspiring for the right reasons! I don’t care if you are a 2:30 marathoner or a 5 hour marathoner- If I read what you write- there is something you do that I find inspiring and is helping me to achieve some sort of balance in my life. And for that, I am thankful of you.

Friday, May 6, 2011

Before I was a Mom.

Before I was a Mom,
I never tripped over toys
or forgot words to a lullaby.
I didn't worry whether or not
my plants were poisonous.
I never thought about immunizations.

Before I was a Mom,

I had never been puked on.
Pooped on.
Chewed on.
Peed on.
I had complete control of my mind
and my thoughts.
I slept all night.

Before I was a Mom,

I never held down a screaming child
so doctors could do tests.
Or give shots.
I never looked into teary eyes and cried.
I never got gloriously happy over a simple grin.
I never sat up late hours at night
watching a baby sleep.

Before I was a Mom,

I never held a sleeping baby just because
I didn't want to put her down.
I never felt my heart break into a million pieces
when I couldn't stop the hurt.
I never knew that something so small
could affect my life so much.
I never knew that I could love someone so much.
I never knew I would love being a Mom.

Before I was a Mom,

I didn't know the feeling of
having my heart outside my body..
I didn't know how special it could feel
to feed a hungry baby.
I didn't know that bond
between a mother and her child.
I didn't know that something so small
could make me feel so important and happy.

Before I was a Mom,

I had never gotten up in the middle of the night
every 10 minutes to make sure all was okay.
I had never known the warmth,
the joy,
the love,
the heartache,
the wonderment
or the satisfaction of being a Mom.
I didn't know I was capable of feeling so much,
before I was a Mom

May you always be overwhelmed by the Grace of God rather than by the cares of life.

Happy Mommy's weekend all.
(came to me from a friend)

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Pictures from Renaissance at Colony Park Half Marathon: MarathonMakeover.com


There is no watermark on these photos- so note that I just ordered them.

Love the raccoon look- when did I put mascara on? lol.
Photos from Sports in Motion Photography.