Chicago Marathon Training: Week 1 Recap

The first official week of training is in the book, friends!! And it was quite an eventful week!

Mondays I’ve marked cross-training days and I hit my local rec center for 30 minutes on the bike (7.25 miles). They’re pretty fancy bikes than what I’ve used before; each one has a big screen. I watched a show on VH1 that was highly entertaining –Love & Hip Hop in Atlanta. I’ve never seen or heard of this show nor knew anyone on it, but boy, those 30 minutes flew by jaja!! I don’t watch a lot of t.v. unless it’s Mickey Mouse Club House, Elmo, or sports. 🙂

I also did some core, back, and arm videos but in the comfort of my own home and not watching Love & Hip Hop lol!

Tuesday I met up with my running buddies at a local running store for a quick 3 miler. And it was quick! Despite the heat (and humidity!) I was able to pull out a fast (for me) negative split run.

How's that for humidity Kristina? ;)

How’s that for humidity Kristina? 😉

I was so freaking happy (and shocked) to see that last mile split! I didn’t feel completely dead either lol!

My plan had 4 miles on the schedule but I was okay with this quick 3.

Wednesday also had 4 miles on the schedule and I met up with my run club to get ‘er done. I was into mile 2 when a familiar sensation starting creeping up from my hands.

I was getting another allergic reaction.

If you’re a new reader, or haven’t heard yet lol, I experience what’s called Exercise Induced Anaphylaxis–basically, I’m allergic to exercise. I don’t have an attack each time I work out, but this was the second time in as many weeks it’s happened and this particular one was pretty bad.

I was 2 miles out from my car and knew I didn’t have much time before it (hives, itching, swelling) would begin to spread. One of my running buddies offered to run and get my car; I usually have about a 15 minute or so window before shit gets real. I knew it’d be close.

After a few minutes though, I knew I wasn’t going to be able to drive myself home and overdose on Benedryl (I stupidly didn’t have any on me or my EPI pen). So, I called my husband.

I was about a 10 minute drive from home and I had already been waiting for about 10, so when he finally found me, I was a hot itchy, red mess. I was trying hard not to scratch my scalp and skin off.

He had brought the goods and I immediately downed some Benedryl. I opted not to use my EPI pen as I can usually control the attack with medicine (and I’d avoid another ER visit).

The thing is, I get so frustrated that we can’t pin point what causes this thing. It doesn’t happen all the time, it doesn’t happen only outdoors (once was on a treadmill), and I don’t do anything out of the ordinary that could attribute to an attack. After the second time this happened, I started keeping a journal where I record everything–what I ate that day, what times, what I wore, products I used–everything, so I can try and find some commonality. But alas….

And when time goes by where I don’t get an attack, I become complacent with carrying my medicine and EPI pen. I know it’s dumb on my part but ….

A while back, my doctor suggested I take a Claritin before runs and Benedryl for if I sense an attack coming, so that’s what I do before runs (before complacency sets in) and what I’ve been doing after Wednesday’s fiasco.

I had 5 miles scheduled for Thursday morning and my husband left it up to me whether or not I’d do them.

I had to.

I just couldn’t let fear keep me from running. I know that it can happen but I also can’t really control it. I can try and prevent it–with taking a Claritin pill before I run–but even then, I don’t know if that really is preventative or if it was simply a run with no attack. Regardless, I knew I wanted to prove to myself that I wouldn’t let the anxiety of whether or not it would happen keep my from running.

So I got those 5 miles done.

Fight run.

Fight run.

Friday was a rest day thank goodness and it was also date night! My husband and I treated ourselves to a night out and we decided to do something we love but hadn’t done in a long time: bowling!!!

We are super competitive against each other so we take any form of sport we play seriously lol. He was going down!!

Pretty proud of my 170 :)

Pretty proud of my 170 🙂

And yup, yours truly came out on top!

Saturday I woke up so sore from the previous night’s bowling lol, but I made it out the door for my long run. It was pretty uneventful, which is good in my case. I made sure to start off slow and try to keep a steady pace throughout. After about mile 4, I felt myself settle in at a 9:45ish pace and that pleased me.


Sunday was a rest day and we took the kids to see Sesame Street Live 😀

Me and my bestie <3

Me and my bestie ❤

I was really productive this week besides my running by doing a lot of strength training videos at home. I did a few each day. I also met my 10k Steps Everyday in June Challenge 6 out of the 7 days (I like to give myself one rest day) and ended the week with a cumulative 49.26 miles–19.02 of them running.

Overall, very happy with the first week of training. Now, I’m looking forward to a new week aaaaand this:

Screenshot_2015-06-15-09-53-30-1 Hope everyone has a great week!!! ❤ , Helly

–Have you ever heard of Exercise Induced Anaphylaxis?
Anything you allergic to?

–Do you like bowling? Think you could beat me? 😉

–Favorite Sesame Street character? (We’re team Elmo because my son is obsessed. Although I’m a little partial to Cooke Monster because…duh…)


59 responses

  1. I have heard of exercise induced anaphylaxis before in graduate school, although I’ve never encountered anyone who consistently experienced attacks. I can’t even imagine how frustrating that must get. And I am not a big bowler… if I break 100 I’m ecstatic. Hope you have a fabulous Monday and a great start to the week 🙂

  2. Oh Helly, I’m sorry you had another attack, that is not only frustrating but scary! I’m not allergic to anything that I know of…yet. And you have some serious bowling skills! HA! I love bowling, I went a few months back with my girlfriends, we had a blast!!

    And Ashton loves Super Grover, but I’m all about cookie monster myself. How can you not love someone who loves cookies???

    Have a great week my friend!

  3. Looks like an awesome week of training, aside from the anaphylaxis. That’s so scary. As far as I know I’m not really allergic to anything, although I do have mild seasonal allergies.

  4. Ugh! I’m sorry you had another attack. :(. Glad you were with others and you are okay. Is it temperature related? It would drive me crazy not knowing what would cause the flare up.

    I stink at bowling! It’s been so long, maybe we could do an MRTT Moms night out at the alley?

    We are team Elmo because of the kiddos, but I’m a little partial to Bert and Ernie. Love those guys!!

  5. I’m sorry you had another attack 😦 It’s hard when you can’t pinpoint the cause. But the preventative claritin seems like a good idea. I hope that continues to help! Great job with the 10,000 steps per day and the bowling! I’m horrible at bowling but still enjoy it.

  6. OMG those temps!!! that is cray. and uh, sorry you had another attack and still haven’t gotten to the bottom of what’s causing it. Poor thing 😦 love the pics you posted at Sesame Street Live. Your littles are SO adorable!! great work this week 🙂

  7. Those temperatures!!! Wow, I guess I shouldn’t complain!
    I am glad you are OK, I have heard about those attacks–how scary. My brother suffers similarly, but his is do to his body’s inability to quickly regulate his temperature. So, if it was cold out, and he were to exercise, when he got to the point where most people would break out in a sweat–Boom! He does not take medicine, as his is an autonomic nervous system disorder due to a traumatic brain injury. His solution is a more gradual warm-up period, and ALWAYS underdressing. He shovels snow in shorts!

  8. Oh yikes, Exercise Induced Anaphylaxis sounds scary! Glad you are okay. It must be really frustrating to deal with something like that where you aren’t even sure what might trigger it.

    Best of luck with your training for Chicago!

  9. I know you’ve been battling this reaction for a while. I can only imagine how frustrating it can be. I haven’t been bowling in a long time but love to do it. We are team Elmo as well 🙂 Great job getting your training in!

  10. Oh no, I’m sorry to hear you have had a couple of allergic reactions recently. I know how horrible the reactions can be. Before I was diagnosed with celiac I would randomly break out in hives all over and it was awful. Of course in hindsight the breakouts weren’t random but at the time I thought they were. I really hope you’re able to pin point what triggers the outbreak sometime soon. At least it sounds like (maybe) the Claritin helps and you’re not letting the outbreaks stop you from doing what you love! I unfortunately had to give up what I loved A LOT … bread! 😀

  11. Nice job on those negative splits and all of your runs!! And OMG – I did not realize you had that condition. And you still do all of this anyway?! You are my hero. I love that you don’t let fear keep you from running. That is really amazing. Annnd the heat you are facing is crazy!!! We see 100 every so often here but never as hot as where you are!

  12. Haha Love & Hip Hop…I’ve never heard of that show either! I’m sure it did make the time pass! I’ve heard of exercise inducing allergic reactions, and I can’t imagine how that feels :/. If I take a break from running though for a week or more, the first day or two after I return to running, my legs and stomach are always itchy, it’s so weird! I hope you’re able to figure out what triggers your allergy attacks, in the meantime, hopefully taking the Claratin will help you. You’re awesome for persevering through all of this and still getting out there the day after something happens like that. Chicago is going to be a great training cycle for you, and it’s already off to a great start :).

  13. I have heard of exercise induced anaphylaxis. That’s awful, Helly. I would think taking an anti histamine would dampen the reaction. Although I’m sure popping a fist full of Claritin doesn’t exactly make you want to run. That’s scary shit. Speaking of scary shit, HOLY HEAT. You are FIERCE. and here’s me bitching about high 80s and nasty humidity. And bowling? I once bowled a 242. #boom 🙂

  14. Sorry to hear you had another attack!!! I wish they could figure it out!
    Isn’t it funny how sore bowling can make you? It kind of feels like you are hardly moving then you wake up the next day saying ouch. 🙂 I admit that I’ve never seen Sesame Street so I have a bare minimum grasp of the characters. 🙂

  15. It’s so funny that the marathon training doesn’t make you sore but the bowling does, haha! I was on vacation last week and threw the football around with my cousins and was sore the next day. It’s crazy how little you use some muscles!!

  16. Gosh I’m frustrated for you that you can’t find a trend in what’s causing your allergic reactions >:0
    Regardless, great job getting the miles in & not letting it scare you away.
    Also you are amazing at bowling! I love it so much, but am lucky to break 80 🙂

  17. Yay Chicago training! The last time I went bowling it left my incredibly sore (especially the obliques). So sorry about your Exercise Induced Anaphylaxis… sounds so scary.

  18. I remember when you first started getting those attacks. I’m glad that you at least now know what it is and how to mostly handle it!!! What training program are you following? I haven’t bowled in years, but I could totally beat you!!! (of course, I’m competitive too!) My fave characters are The Count and The Swedish Chef. They crack me up!

    • I’m following one that my charity provided. We get a coach 🙂 I usually go with my trusty Hal but I kinda liked this one too.
      Ooooh, so you bowl huh? Aaand you’re pretty good? IT’s ON!! 😀
      My husband likes the Count because he’s a numbers guy too lol

  19. wow.. I had never heard of Exercise Induced Anaphylaxis.! that sounds horrible.! especially for an active person like you.
    I bet a lot more people have it than we know, but because a lot of people don’t exercise..well we’ll never know. lol.
    Take care girl.!!