Week Three Marathon Training Recap

One of the things I hear the most from people is, “You always have something going on!” It’s true. It’s like I thrive on having a lot to do jaja! That’s actually part of why my blog is named hellyontherun—I’m always running around everywhere, literally and figuratively

This past week was busy busy as I’m sure it was for most Americans preparing for the holidays. Last Sunday we began Christmas decorating (I know, I know, Thanksgiving hadn’t even happened) and I had the cutest little helper.


I had to rearrange my training schedule for the holiday and because we were going out of town so I did my tempo run on Monday—a chill 4 miles. On Tuesday I had my doctor’s appointment to check out my shins which I wrote about here. Tuesday this guy also had an appointment–


–his 4 month check-up. Yep, 4 months already!

That same day (told you I was busy) we hit the road down south.


Wednesday, my husband and I ran an easy 2 miles to get acclimated to the cold weather. I love running in Douglas but I forget how cold it can get there.

Thursday was Turkey Trot 5k day and boy was it an awesome day : )


Friday morning my husband and I did another easy 2 miles (I started the Runner’s World Streak Challenge on Thanksgiving) before we hit the road back to Phoenix.

Saturday morning at 5:30 I was up and ready for my long run, 8 miles. I decided that after a whirlwind week I’d make it an easy 8 so I started the first half of it at a very comfortable pace. The second half I picked up the pace. Here are my all over the place splits:

1- 10:48
2- 10:51
3- 10:56
4- 10:52
5- 10:43
6- 10:17
7- 10:08
8- 9:43

19 total miles for the week and finished November with a grand total of 50.43 miles.

Oh, and this happened today : )


–Do you like having a lot of things going on?

–Are you excited for the holidays?

Running With (no!) Music

When I ran cross country in high school, we weren’t allowed to run with music. This was not a problem considering that back in my day, if we wanted to run with music, we’d be hauling with us a portable cd player.

I discovered the iPod my freshman year of college when I moved to the city. I was gifted an iPod shuffle and thought it was a pretty nifty invention. Of course, I started using it to exercise and really never looked back.

If I forget or misplace my iPod, I run without listening to music; but, very rarely do I intentionally decide to go without it.

On Saturday it was cold and rainy—a rarity in Arizona. I met up with my run club shivering and anxious to get the show on the road. I stood clutching my iPod tightly, ready to hit play as soon as we started. We set off and I found myself running alongside Jim. He asked me how my legs were feeling and I told him that I had set up an appointment with a sports medicine doctor on Tuesday to get them looked at. We continued to chat and I could hear Kelly Clarkson tell me that what doesn’t kill makes her stronger faintly in the background, my earphones hanging around my neck. I lowered the volume.

After a while, I glanced at my watch and saw that a mile had gone by! I knew that I was running at a leisurely pace having talked to Jim the entire way, but I was surprised at how good I felt and how it seemed time had passed by without much preoccupation—I hadn’t checked my watch that entire mile. I started to pick up my pace and drift away from Jim. It was dark out still and I could hear the wind blowing through the trees and the rain hit the water in the canal beside me. I could also hear Jennifer Lopez tell me to get on the floor.

I unplugged my earphones and tucked them in my pocket and turned off my iPod. I decided I was running the rest of the way listening to nature instead.

The first mile had been a slow one but it served as a perfect warm-up as the rest of the run went by smoothly. I felt pretty darn good. I noticed that as I was listening to the sounds around me I was also more aware of what was around me. I noticed the horses in the backyards of houses, the bridge connecting the two sides of the canal at mile 4, and the height of some of the trees I passed. Things I probably would not have paid much attention to had I been listening to music. Sometimes, I become so entranced by a song that I have no idea where I’m at. Other times, I’m keenly aware of a song’s length and am so focused at how much song is left before the next one starts. I become pretty familiar with my playlists and get anxious to hear a certain song and want the current one to end.

I had no such worries that day.

If you noticed my splits on Saturday, you’d see that I picked up my pace as the run went on. Music did not help me do it. I did it. I was thinking about this after my run and wandered if maybe music was having too much control over my running. Was I being influenced by the pace of the song? Do I concentrate better without my iPod? Am I able to focus more on my running instead of the song lyrics?

Saturday’s run felt so great that I’ve decided to try a few more workouts without it. I might be on to something here.

–Do you listen to music when you run?

–Do you think music can have an influence on your pace?

Week Two Marathon Training Recap

I think I read somewhere that the first two weeks of any training is the toughest and when most people quit. Well, I’m two weeks in and pumped!

Monday I was on the treadmill ready to tackle some “hills”. I’ve never done hill intervals on the treadmill and really didn’t know what I was doing but decided I’d just click on the hill interval button and go at it. I started at cool 9:40 pace and was feeling good. Then I felt the treadmill move. At first it wasn’t too bad of a change but then I started to see the incline percentage climb and I was shocked at how different it felt to be running up for what to me seemed like a long time. Since it was new to me, and I get excited about new things, I went for it and stayed at my 9:40 pace. I could feel sweat dripping from my face and my shirt start to cling to my body. I could feel the girl on the treadmill next to me staring. I could feel my heart pumping away. I. Felt. Awesome.

I love, love, love feeling like I’m getting a good workout it. At the end, I completed 3 miles in 28:46 with a 9:34/mile pace. I had climbed 371 ft.

Wednesday I met up with my run club at a local track. I was looking forward to what was on the agenda. I love the start of the workouts; everyone gathers around and shares their race stories from the previous weekend and show off their medals. Then Jim, the leader of the group, asks about any new sign ups. There were 6 who said they’d signed up for an Ironman! It’s so inspiring to be around talented people but also people who are there simply because they love running.

Jim had us doing a ladder exercise where we’d run 400m, then 800, then 1200, 1600, 1200, 800, 400. After each set, we’d walk for just a little bit and then get back at it. I made sure to run at a challenging but doable pace and stick to it. I wanted to maintain some sort of consistency. It turns out that I was feeling so good around an 8:25 pace! I couldn’t believe my watch when I’d check on it every now and again that it was showing me eights! I ended the workout at 3.2 miles in 28:02 with an 8:45 min/mile pace. I had run my fastest mile in 8:08!

I didn’t complete the full exercise, leaving after the second 1200m. I had to go pick up pizza : )

The next day, Thursday, I had four miles on my schedule. This would be a treadmill run. For some reason, I had a premonition this would not be a good run. I think I felt I had had two really good workouts that there wasn’t a chance it could be three in a row.

Sure enough, as soon as I got on the treadmill I could feel my shins flare up. The first two miles were absolutely awful. I stopped it once I reached the two mile mark and used the rest room and stretched my legs. I talked myself into going back and finishing—the schedule said four miles.

I mustered up whatever energy and motivation I had and finished. It ended up being not as bad as I thought at 38:31, around a 9:35 pace.

Today, Saturday, was long run day. My alarm went off at 5:15 and off I went to meet my run club to start our 6 a.m. run. It was raining this morning and it had been a long time that I had run in the rain. I started the first mile talking to Jim so I had my ear phones tucked away. At mile two we drifted apart and I decided that it was so beautiful out hearing the rain fall and the breeze that I wasn’t going to put my ear phones back on. (I have a lot more to say about this later) I realized I hadn’t looked at my watch the entire time I talked to Jim but I felt great and that’s what mattered. I could feel my shins but it was more soreness than sharp pain.

I kept going.

I couldn’t believe how good I felt. I was almost afraid to increase my pace. When I reached mile three, the turnaround point for me, I decided that in the second half of my run I’d go a little a faster. I slowly increased my pace and finished off the run at 59:27 with a 9:54 min/mi pace. I loved that I finished in under an hour and I actually loved my splits:













That first mile talking to Jim allowed me to have enough endurance to finish strong and while it was a lot slower than what I usually do, because of that start I felt I could have kept going at the end.

Overall, this was a great week for me. I still worry about my shins but today’s run raised my spirits and I’m looking forward to next week. I’ve got a Turkey Trot 5k on Thanksgiving! : )

–Do you like running hills?

–What is your comfort pace?

–Do you run through pain?