Let’s Do This!! …Again!!

I took a mini break after Phoenix last February before I started St. George Marathon training, but that mini break seems like it was so long ago, lol! After two weeks of laying low, here I am, again, starting a new a training cycle #iamnotnormal

In my last post I had decided not to use a coach as with the holidays approaching, I wanted to budget and prepare. But, when Elle asked me again to write a post comparing Hanson’s training and training with a coach, I felt that I hadn’t really gotten the full coach experience. I told Elle it wouldn’t be fair for me to make a comparison given that I only really followed the plan for two months before I threw in the white flag.

This made me think about what could have been different had I been able to get a full cycle with her. The two months I ran under her guidance, I felt strong, and I was hitting paces I never thought I could. My confidence was up, I felt good.

So, after talking with my husband and with my coach, I decided to give it another go with her. I’ve seen firsthand athletes thrive under her coaching and I’m truly curious to see what I can do if I commit to her training.

Coach Susan Loken and me 😀

It’s scary, because I have the added accountability factor, but that also motivates me.

Today, I had my first timed mile. I was nervous because these always make me nervous. The plan was to go to my coach’s track workout but with my husband away for work, I was resigned to my neighborhood streets after kid drop off.

The goal was a 6:30 and with my previous timed mile being 6:52 this was a bit ambitious, but, for some reason, I felt like I could do it.

I didn’t. Not even close.

6:42

I’m happy I bettered my time by 10 seconds, and I’m super happy that I felt something in me that said I could do it.

The splits of my 5k PR are 7:03, 7:19, 6:57 <—- that last mile of my fastest 5k of my life, makes me feel like I’ve got a faster single mile than a 6:42.

I’ve never been a naturally fast runner. I’ve worked hard and have come a long way to get where I’m at now as a runner. I’m super excited that I’m finally feeling confident and LESS scared to do hard things (because there has to be a little element of fear in there, right? 😀 )

Alright, let’s do this!!

–Do you like being a little scared of your goals?

Some St. George Extra and What I’m Doing Now

I mentioned in a previous post about St. George how I was excited about the race because of friends running it.

My friend Jenna, who also used the same coach as me, was running to Boston Qualify, and I had no doubts she would do it. Guess what? SHE KILLED IT. She needed a 3:35 like me and ended up with a 3 FREAKING 20!!! Yeah, demolished her goal!!!

My other friend Kimi was running her third marathon in 6 months (crazy girl) and also pulled out a BQ. We’re not sure if it’ll be enough cushion but that girl is serious amazeballs.

Ashley, my training buddy/partner-in-BQ-crime, came away with a 4 minute PR at 3:43!!! I *know* she’s got a BQ in her and with the right course (maybe CIM in December?) she’ll get her Boston ticket.

In my race recap, I recounted how we’d driven the course and seen that while it was net downhill, it was a lot of rolling up and down hill. I knew I was not prepared for that (or prepared to BQ or PR), but even Ashley who had done some hill training wasn’t feeling confident after the preview.

St. George Marathon is an absolutely beautiful course. The views the entire way are breathtaking. The volunteers and overall organization of the race are seriously topnotch. Like, for real. At each station, there were people who who would rub cream on your legs to help with cramping, they were people who had vaseline if you were chafing, there were people there to help you with mostly anything. I had never seen anything like it!

But as a Boston Qualifying course, I’m not so sure I’d recommend it. If you like hills, have hills around you to train, then this is def a good course to shoot for that goal. If you’re in the flatlands, it might be tough.

I’d have to stick with my Phoenix Marathon course. It’s also net downhill (that’s really more flat than downhill after the initial descent) and while boring and lacking in views (after the initial descent), I honestly think it’s a good PR course. (and of course, shameless plug: Use Helly10 for $10 off the half or full!)

Downhill but way less so than St. George.

So that’s where I’ll make my next attempt. I’ll have home court advantage, so I have that going for me. And if I’m honest, I need all the help I can get.

Right now I’m laying low, easing myself back into running after a much needed rest. I’m skipping CIM in December and instead getting a full cycle for Phoenix. Training for Phoenix officially begins the 24th, and I’ll be going in ready to give it all I have. I’d love to use my coach again, but with budgeting for the holidays, I’ll be re-using some of her workouts in addition to Hanson’s to go at it solo. I’m excited, and I feel really good about where I’m at right now with running. Even though I had a rough go at it with St. George, coming away with a PR match has given me a newfound confidence with this next attempt.

Let’s do this, blogging fam!! ❤

–What is your next running/fitness goal?

 

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2017 St. George Marathon Race Recap #likenoother

Oh man, what a race….

We drove to St. George, Utah on Thursday and hit the expo Friday morning. After, my training buddy Ashley and I drove the course to check out what awaited us.

Me and Ash at the Expo #InBobWeTrust

There were SO many ups and downs, ups and downs that I began to worry if I’d even finish the race. I had not prepared for that undulation. And I knew me–hills are just not my strength.

This is NOT an all downhill course. Do NOT be fooled.

Nevertheless, I knew I was there to get to the finish line and get there with a smile.

———-

Race morning had us getting bussed to the start. We took the earliest one as I like to have plenty of time for things to settle if you know what I mean. But I had some issues….and that threw me off the loop for a bit. Whatever, I had a race to run.

I ran alone and had absolutely no idea what my race strategy was going to be. I just ran and the first mile chimed in at 8:28. I was fine with that as even though I wasn’t sure what my goal was, I knew my PR average was around 8:30.

But as I ran, the miles kept getting faster. I only looked at my watch when the mile would beep. I was just letting myself run.

Early miles smiles

I knew Veyo Hill was coming at mile 8. I knew that there were more after that, and I knew that it was going to suck. The only goal was to NOT STOP, and I didn’t, but man it was getting hard to move.

Going into the halfway mark, I was in dour spirits. The hills had crushed me. Thoughts of bagging it started creeping in. When I couldn’t bring myself to quit, I told myself a sub 4 would be an amazing time and if I could pull that off, it would be an accomplishment.

But I knew deep down inside I wanted to PR.

So I began to fight.

The sun would throw a punch, and I would just keep going. The rolling hills would get in good ones, but I would just keep going.

I could start to feel myself wearing down and wanting to give the race the W.

But somehow I’d find the strength to keep punching back.

The 3:45 pacer caught up to me and I said YOU WILL NOT PASS ME.

The last mile I ran as hard as I possibly could. I was beaten. I was broken. But I was not defeated.

I ran and fought for it.

You bet I passed teal shirt girl.

3:44:43

I have never been so happy to match my PR in my life. I am not the least bit upset that I didn’t beat it, that I didn’t finish 18 seconds faster. I worked SO HARD for that time. So freaking hard.

I’ve come away from St. George ridiculously happy. I’ve seen how my mental strength has grown by what transpired on Saturday. I had so many outs. So many excuses to use to give up.

But. I. Didn’t.

I’ve come away motivated, pumped for the next one (Phoenix next year). I thought St. George would be a bust, a miserable race to end a difficult training cycle. Not even close. I am so, so happy.

Thank you all SO MUCH for your love and support. You all have no idea ❤

–Have you fought with a race and won?