Half Marathon Training Week Six

If you would like to follow my other weeks of training, they can be found on my Workouts page. I break my half marathon training down by week to make it easier to follow.


Not my best week. Being sick really sidelined my workouts.

Key Workouts

Easy Runs: 1 of 3

Speed Training: 0 of 1

Long Run: 0 of 1

Strength Training: Upper Body 15 minutes

Total Miles: 5

Planed Miles: 27

Not much to say about this week but I felt it was better to rest through being sick, then to push myself and make it worse.

I planned on racing this weekend but am not sure if I should in light of being sick. It is a 10K, which is a distance I love, and for a good cause.

Polk Race For The Cure

Would you race this close to coming off of a cold?

How was your training last week? Did you reach your goals?

Weekly Workouts

Monday: 3 Miles Easy

Tuesday: Full body Strength Training

Wednesday: 6 Miles Total (Including Warm-Up), 3X1600 With 800 Jogs, and a Cool down

Thursday: 2 Miles Easy

Friday: Rest

Saturday: 11 Mile Long Run

Sunday: Yoga

Last Week:

Total Mileage: 21.88 Miles

Strength Workout: 1


I stuck to my new training plan but it was a lazy week for me cross training. I have had a lot of time off in the past few weeks (using up my remaining vacation time before it expires on January 1.) It is much more difficult for me to get motivated when I have time at home, as opposed to being on my normal routine with work. This weeks Yoga class was taught by a different teacher who was a lot more difficult. I think it will pay off to try different classes taught by different teachers to get more variety.

Have you been following the Hot Chocolate DC 15K/5K disaster? It is like a train wreck that I cannot look away from. The posts just keep coming and people are really angry. I am so thankful to have never experienced anything remotely that terrible while racing.

Hot Chocolate 15K/5K Race Called “ Epic Fail”

Hot Chocolate 15K/5K Facebook Page

Have you ever run a horrible race?

November: The Month I Ran My First Half


Women’s Half Marathon St. Pete: November of 2011 will now be known as the month I ran my first half. Seeing all the planning and training pay off, all while having a great time running, was really the most wonderful part of the month.

Florida Hospital Celebration Health 10K: I learned what not to eat unless you want to run a 10K with a brick in your stomach.

Food Rut: Talking about my recent food rut was a catalyst in actually seeking out new recipes and planning out my meals. When you have a husband (looking at you J), who has a great need for variety, it’s important to keep dinners interesting and varied while at the same time trying to keep it healthy and cost-effective.

Epcot Food and Wine Festival:The Epcot Food and Wine Festival was filled with fun (and beer and food). Even though it was cold and crowded, J and I ate from one country to another. I love Epcot, it’s always interesting to be drunk at Disney and I can imagine it is much more fun to do that without kids.

Biggest Failure:

F Is For Failure: I took a day off of work to see the midnight showing of Breaking Dawn and fell asleep at 8PM.

Favorite Pictures:

Cat Stare

Sleeping Cat Gives The Evil Eye

Cute Cat Ready To Attack

The only picture of me at the Women’s Half Marathon. My number was scrunched up under my FuelBelt which I did not notice until I saw this picture.

St. Pete Women's Half Marathon 2011


Women's Half Marathon St. Pete Bag

What are your highlights for November?

Moving Forward

Leading up to the end of end of Half Marathon training, I started to have a nagging feeling of what to do next. I wanted to let myself enjoy the St. Pete Women’s Half and take the time to really process how I felt about it before I jumped into a new training plan. Living in an area with a lot of great races, I knew it would be difficult to know where to start.

This week has been one in which I took it easy. I did not exercise for three days following the Half and have only run one day. I wanted to take it easy because of the holiday and to really think about how to move forward. Sometimes taking that time to rest, mentally and physically, can give you the push to jump into a new routine.

So One Day I Just Decided To Run


The question I have mulled over the most, is whether to focus on short or long distances. I want a sub-30 5K and I am very close to obtaining it. With regular speed training, I know I can get there. At the the same time, I want to run another Half. I learned a lot training for the first one and think this training cycle will be a lot more efficient. So what to do?

I decided to train for the Half. I will still run a few shorter distance races (a few five and ten K’s) but think maintaining the fitness I currently have, will help improve my time rather than starting to base build later in the year.

Here is the current race plan. It is tentative and I reserve the right to change my mind.

A Race:

Gasparilla Distance Classic – March 4th Half Marathon

Other Races:

The Florida Half Marathon 10K & 5K December 17th – Will do the 10K

Beat the Elite 10-K Challenge – January 14th

Seasons 52 5.2K – January 21st

House of Hope Run Around the Pines – February 18th

Iron Girl Clearwater – April 4th Half Marathon

How do you feel after your A race? Ready to jump into a new training cycle or do you like to take it easy?

Social Networking For The Win

Like many new runners, I have a lot of questions. Yesterday, as I stared at the course map for my impending first Half, I started to think about water. There are a lot of water stops on this course. Nearly one every mile. This led me to wonder if carrying water with me, via a Fuel Belt, was worth it. Now, I do not mind running with a Fuel Belt, I do so on long runs but if I have a choice of with or without, I prefer without. So I took my question to Twitter.

Running my first half on Sunday. If there are water stops everymile would you stil run with a fuelbelt? #runchat #fitblog

Which was followed by a lot of helpful responses.

@ It depends: Do you like the fuel drink they're offering (I don't like Gatorade), & do u want to stop & walk thru the water stops?
Jennifer Z
@ I prefer to so that when I want a drink I can get one especially if the water stop is congested
Christy Gerdes
Depends - are you carrying any fuel with you, like shotbloks, GU, etc? RT @: If there are water stops everymile would you stil...
Running Peanut
@ well, if you are used to running with a belt, then I'd go for it. I have a #spibelt and love it!
Running Peanut

So this was the first of, what I can only imagine will be many, freak-outs averted before the race on Sunday. It is starting to feel so real and slightly scary.

Have you ever taken a problem or question to Social Media? Did it help?

What racing questions did you ask before your first big race?

Half Marathon Training Week 14 In Review

You can follow my previous weeks training and current DVD rotation on my Workouts page.

Sunday: Rest

Monday: 2.51 Miles

Tuesday: Total Body Circuit Training with Jackie Warner 40 Minutes Full Body

Wednesday: Elliptical 30 Minutes

Thursday: 2.56 Miles

Friday: Rest

Saturday:Last speed session of training plan. 6 x 800 repeats total of 5.27 Miles.


Doing the Jackie Warner DVD proved how much more frequently I need to do  more strength workouts. This DVD had gotten a bit easier but I am finding it challenging again. My training is winding down and as I write this I have nine days until my first Half. I am excited, scared, and happy all at the same time. It is interesting when something you have worked so hard for and planned for so long, starts to become so real.


1. On Sunday, 11/13, I am running my last long training run in the Florida Hospital Celebration Health Founder’s Day 10K. I am looking forward to this race because Celebration is one of my favorite places.

2. Relax and not stress about the upcoming Half. It is going to be fun and I know I will finish.

3. Sleep, eat, and stay hydrated all week.

J caught Tail doing this to the TV during Monday night football.

How do you stay relaxed the last week before a big race?

Fitness Friday Blog Hop

A 5K That Was Not 3.1 Miles

On Saturday, I ran the inaugural Margarita Run 5K Urban Run & 1 Mile Walk. This is a small local race which is for a great cause, benefitting Haines City Main Street, and close to my house. It was interesting running at 5PM but the weather was perfect. (What do most people eat when they race later in the day? I had breakfast but lunch was a difficult one. I ended up eating breakfast foods for lunch and hoped my stomach would be fine.)

Haines City has a great downtown area that is really on an upswing. I love seeing all the local businesses that are opening.

Downtown Haines City

They had a cute mini expo in Railroad Park. I loved that a local Mexican restaurant, La Fiesta Mexicana, sold nachos and tacos. It went well with the margaritas.

Haines City Mini 5K Expo

We started running through an arch of balloons. (I took this picture after they unhooked one end of the arch.)


This course had a lot of hills (for Florida). It even took us on a dirt path and over some railroad tracks. The course sadly was not 3.1 miles.


At the two mile mark, I heard one of the volunteers yell that there was only a half a mile left. I looked at my Garmin and knew I could not have a half mile left because I cannot run that fast. The sad thing is that I would have had a PR if I maintained my average pace for the remained of the 5K.

At least there was a band.

Haines City 5K Band

Have you ever had a race go wrong?

Is it crazy that I will probably run this race again next year?

Please take a minute to enter my giveaway of The Swiss Cheese Theory Of Life.

Miracle Miles 15K Race Report

First, I want to thank everyone for their really supportive comments on my Fears and My First 15K post. It really helped me calm down to read such encouraging comments.

Race day morning started like many others, waking up at the crack of dawn and trying to keep my eyes open. Living in the middle of nowhere (between Orlando and Tampa), I have to get up extra early for Orlando races because it can take me 45 minutes to an hour to drive there. So I coffee’d, ate, and looked at the internet while trying to wake myself up.

Getting into Orlando and finding the parking garage was actually uneventful which is amazing because I get lost places I have been to many times and with a GPS. After waiting forever in line for the worlds most disgusting Porto-Potty, I actually found one of the Orlando Bloggers who I knew would be at the race, Carolina from Peas In A Blog. It was so nice to actually know someone at the race.

Miracle Miles is a race for a great cause. It benefits the Alexander Center for Neonatology at Winnie Palmer Hospital for Women & Babies. It was really cute how many babies were in attendance. Makes you feel all warm and fuzzy.


I started the race with a plan to do 6:1 run/walk intervals. This race being my farthest run and knowing that it was going to be a scorcher, that seemed to be a reasonable plan. My legs felt fine until around mile seven where I started to get a little crampy. At that point, I slowed the intervals to 4:1 and eventually 3:1. Maybe if I had started with the 4:1 intervals at the start, I would not have experienced the cramping but hindsight is 20/20.

I did have two Cliff Shot Gels one at mile five and the other around mile seven.This is the first time I tried to open one on the run, big mistake. This should be practiced because I had a hard time getting them open. I ended up ripping into them with my teeth. I am undecided about a fuel source for my half. On my next few long runs, I really need to try a few more products and make a decision. Any recommendations will be highly welcome.

I ended the race with a chip time of 2 hours and 20 seconds. It was actually faster than I thought I would be, so I will take it.


Overall, the course was interesting. I loved running through Downtown Orlando and getting to see the different neighborhoods that surround it. I would have appreciated a downhill, rather than an uphill at the end, but I still had a great time. This race really cemented my desire to run a half and now I am even more excited.

I did not take any pictures at the race but did make J take this picture of me at home with my first medal. Yes, it looks like a mug shot and it is before I showered but I am still proud.

Miracle Miles 15K Medal

Any recommendations on fuel?

Have you ever run a 15K? How do you feel about the distance?

Fears And My First 15K

My first long race is tomorrow and I am nervous! I feel prepared (enough) but anything new can be scary. I thought it would be fun to look back at my first race in January 2011 and remember how freaked out I was.

I wrote about my fears, the night before that first 5K. It was pretty standard fare, falling, feeling foolish, being last, and not being able to finish. Pretty similar to how I feel about the upcoming race. Then there were also the fears of the logistics, not knowing where to line up, hoping my D-Tag was on correctly, do I drink the water at the water stops, and assorted other issues that you eventually learn the answers to. (Can you tell that I am a worrier? It might actually be more frantic in my head than I am able to share here.)

Luckily, I loved the race and it made me want to keep running. Finishing that race, even though my time was slow and I walked some of it, was euphoric. I hope that tomorrow’s Miracle Miles will be similar, euphoria and pride for finishing (plus a personal distance record).

Source: flickr.com via Emilie on Pinterest



How do you feel the night before a race?

Fitness Friday Blog Hop

Race Bucket List

If you had unlimited money, time to train, and vacation time from work, what races would you run?

1. Marathon De Paris Paris is my favorite city and any excuse to go, I would take. This race starts on the Champs-Elysees and goes across the city, hitting most of the big landmarks.



2. Athens Marathon I have never been to Greece, so that’s one big fat reason. Another reason is the history.

According to legend, it covers the same ground that the Athenian messenger Phiedippides ran when he brought news of victory from the battlefield of Marathon 2,500 years ago. When you run the Athens Marathon, you run in the very footsteps of the ancient gods and heros that gave birth to western civilization. The finish line is in Athens’ magnificent Olympic Stadium, the birthplace of the modern Olympic Games. (From the Athens Marathon site)

What could be cooler than ending a race in Olympic Stadium?

3. The Great Wall Marathon It is amazingly beautiful and such a unique, once in a lifetime experience.





4. Inca Trail to Machu Picchu Marathon A marathon in the mountains that starts in a famed lost city and takes you past ruins and fortresses from a great civilization.



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