Chicago Marathon Training: Week 2 Recap

Hi all!! I hope everyone had a good weekend and Father’s Day (those stateside) 🙂

It was tough getting in runs last week as we were in a Heat Advisory the whole week with temperatures in the 115s — yes, you read that right. But, I managed to squeeze some short runs in and one long run.

Monday was spent on the bike for 45 minutes (10.5 miles) and some strength training.

Tuesdays I join one of my running groups but it was the big game between the Cleveland Caveliers and the Golden State Warriors. (I’m basketball obsessed.) So I braved an afternoon run.

Hot run.

Hot run.

My training plan called for 5 but I had to call it done at 3. Way too hot even for me.

The Cavs lost but this was the first NBA finals in years where I didn’t really care who won. I wasn’t yelling at the t.v. (or swearing lol!) and really just watched it for pure enjoyment. I wasn’t upset that Golden State won.

Wednesday I had plans to hit the track for some speed work but the thought of speed work in 110 degree weather just didn’t sound appealing. So I went out a little late early in the morning for a 4 miler.

93 degrees at 8 a.m.

93 degrees at 8 a.m.

Thursday was Adventure Run at a local running store and this month’s theme was Disney!! My run club always has a good turnout there and sure enough, there was about a good 20 of us there–about a handful dressed up (including me!).

Goofy Helly.

Goofy Helly.

The Road Runner Sports Adventure Run has you running to different checkpoints in the neighborhood in search for raffle tickets. You try and make it to as many checkpoints in the hour you have to run before the raffle starts.

The main checkpoint this month was the water park where runners could go down a water slide for tickets. Ummm, count me in!!

Soooo much fun!!

I only got in just under 3 miles but all was well 🙂

Friday was a rest day and Saturday my husband and I got up eeeearly to get our long run in. We had 11 on our agenda and we both met up with our run club to get er done. He left to run on his own (meaning, fast lol!) and I ran the first 6 miles with my two buddies and then finished out the last 5 by myself. Overall, it was a tough run but I was pleased that I finished it and finished it averaging the same pace as my previous long runs so far in this cycle (the 2 during preseason and last week’s).


Sunday I was planning on resting but I was slacking on my steps for my 10k a Day Challenge so my husband joined me on an evening run–this time running the entire way with me 🙂 .

Fast 2.5

Fast 2.5

I always seem to run fast with the husband lol!

Overall, a good week. 23.42 running miles and 48.9 cumulative miles when I count my steps. Met 6/7 days of my 10k Steps a Day Challenge and did really well with hydration. I slacked this week on strength training but still managed to squeeze in a couple of days. So far, so good!

Happy Monday everyone!! I hope you all have a great week! ❤ , helly

–Have you gotten on a water slide mid-run?

–Do you run in obscene temperatures?

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…)


Let The Training Begin!!

Pre-season is OVAH!! and now it’s time to get down to the real deal Holyfield 😀

But first, lemme recap last week — it was a productive base training week for sure:

Monday was supposed to be a rest day as I had run the previous Friday, Saturday, and Sunday–4, 6, 4 miles respectively–and was feeling it. But, my MRTT group had started a June One Miler Challenge where we run one mile at the beginning of June and one mile at the end (and hope for improvement lol!)


This was a tough mile. And it ended on a rough note — upon finishing, I felt my hands start to itch and my throat start to scratch and I knew it was coming. Another allergic reaction. Luckily, I was already home and when I walked inside, I told my husband what was happening. He quickly took out the Benedryl. I could feel my ears start to swell, I could see my hands turn red and bumps start to form on my legs–I wanted to scratch off my scalp.

But I was fine, and it wasn’t too long after overdosing taking some Benedryl that it went away and I was back to normal.

It’s just super scary while it’s happening and not knowing when it will or won’t is frustrating.

Tuesday I met up with a local running store for their weekly group run. I got in a really good (hot) 3 miler chatting with some friends and was very happy with my splits and pace.

Screen Shot 2015-06-08 at 7.39.27 AM

How’s the weather where you’re at? Lol!

Wednesday was National Running Day and I met up with my main running club at another running store to celebrate. The run was an out and back 3 miler, and my Chicago running partner and I (along with another MRTT friend) managed to negative split this hot, windy run. 9:18, 9:12, 9:03.



After six days of running in a row (a little mini streak there), I decided to call Thursday a break. I could feel a tinge of tightness in my right quad and had been foam rollin’ the hell out of it since earlier in the week. I knew with rest, I’d be alright.

Fridays are typical rest days so I rested from running but did some light upper body strength stuff and some abs stuff. And foam rolling.

By Saturday, I felt so much better. My husband, who is also Chicago Marathon training, and I decided that I’d long run Saturday and he’d long run Sunday. But, we had early plans on Sunday that would likely make him have to split the 7 miler scheduled. He’s not a fan of splitting runs so he went Saturday which meant an extra rest day for me 🙂 I’ll take it. (Plus, I was little sore from the arm and abs stuff from Friday lol!).

Sunday I knew that it was likely I’d have to split my run. We were meeting up with my run club for a Summer Sizzle Fun 5k and would have to be out the door by 7:15. I could run 4 miles at home and then run the 5k with the group; or, I could get my butt out of bed super early and get it all in at once.

Surprisingly, I got out of bed.

It ended being a great run! My body felt rested, my legs felt good. The first mile beeped 10:07. Then the second mile beeped 10:39 and I could swear it felt reversed. I had felt the first mile to be slow and steady, a good warm up pace. And I felt like I had “started” my run the second mile. But, the numbers don’t lie and I gathered myself up the third mile and kept going.

I ended up negative splitting the rest of the run.

Screen Shot 2015-06-08 at 8.03.23 AM

I wasn’t actively trying to negative split but I felt after the 4th mile to be warmed up and just ran, only looking at my watch when it would beep the mile split. When I was done, I felt so good, like I could have kept on going. That made me really happy as that’s how I always hope to end a long run.

We left to meet my run club not long after I got home from my run. I love my main running club because they’re seriously like family to me. We’ve done so many cool things with them that has brought us close together; my kids know everyone and I love how they’re growing up around such a positive community.


Also in June, I’m participating in a 10k Steps Challenge with my MRTT group and I’m happy to report 6/7 days met!


Overall, it was a great pre-season training week (14 total miles) and now I’m ready to get the show on the road. Things are getting real up in here! Chicago, here comes Helly!!!

I hope you all have a great Monday!! ❤ , helly

–Do you like long-running?

–What’s your favorite thing about training for a race?