Friday, July 30, 2010

New Shoes!

I got new shoes today!  Thankfully the one pictured isn't the only one I got today. After this morning's swim, I decided to run over to Dick's and buy a new pair of running shoes with the hopes of curing my plantar fasciitis/ heel spur that I have developed in my right foot.  However, had I known that the doctor was going to give me one of these lovely boots instead, I probably would have held off on the running shoes.  I have been bothered by plantar fasciitis for about a month now and the pain was getting worse, not better and I was getting sick of hearing all kinds of unsolicited advice from all the runners I know on how to cure it.  So....I finally relented and went to the doctor.  Well, x-rays were ordered and I have a referral to a podiatrist, but in the meantime, the doctor recommended doing more stretches, particularly before going to bed (I hadn't thought of that one).  She wrote a prescription for a night splint for me because her office didn't have one and since I was going to the Kaiser hospital in the valley for my mother-in-law, I decided to pick it up there.  Well it turns out they don't carry the night splint anymore.  However, the nurse at the orthopedist's dept. felt sorry for me thinking that I came all the way down to Panorama City for nothing so he gave me this boot, which he said will basically do the same thing-keep me from flexing my foot forward at night.  And of course he had his own advice regarding how to get rid of my plantar fasciitis-stop running until it goes away.  Well gee, that's why I put off going to the doctor for my condition because in the end, I knew that was exactly what they were going to tell me to do.  Anyhow, I will make an honest effort of not running for an entire week to get the inflammation down and hopefully try running next week.  It looks like I'll be doing a lot more swimming and perhaps even a bike ride or two this week.  Heck, I mind as well train for a triathlon at this point!

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Uh Excuse Me?

Okay, this is the second week in a row when someone has cut in front of me in the finish chute at the COC Summer Series.  Last week it was some woman and I made sure she didn't take my card by letting her know.  This week it was some big burley guy and several people told him he needed to stay in finish order.  I turned around and told him "there's no glory in cheating an old woman".  His excuse was that he didn't want to stop, which I didn't, I was just walking slowly since it is the finish chute.  Anyhow, I was just so glad that it was over and that I finally broke 27 minutes.  I made sure Patty was a witness to my GPS in case they messed up the times again.  I think both Patty and I felt a lot better today, perhaps from resting the couple of days before the race and not doing intervals.  I think we both felt like we kept a more even controlled pace, but both of us felt that we could have done better if there weren't so many darn people tonight.  Normally my card # is in the mid 200's, tonight my # was 419.  I think Patty said there were 3 times more people tonight than before and I definitely felt it.  Both of us got stuck behind two big guys, one being coached by the other.  I came across them on the second hill and had a hard time going around them because they were walking up the hill side by side, VERY annoying.  Why can't they walk single file?  This was my last race for the season and it felt good to finally be done.  I think Patty might have one or two more races left in her.  Her son, who is going off to college this year, came and ran the race and did quite well considering he hasn't been training with a team.  He cheered for me as I came into the stadium, but Patty got the royal treatment and had him running in with her.  Isn't that sweet?  I had a little kid yelling me encouragement around the final curve and he was telling me to keep going I'm almost there.  He was so cute and sweet and his words of encouragement brought a smile to my face as I finished.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Up and Running

After four days of no running, I finally met Patty for a "short" run at Heritage this morning.  She was trying out her new orthotics and I was trying out my foot.  I have to say that all the swimming and no running had my legs feeling a little bit wobbly.  I was telling her that in the old days, it was not recommended for runners to swim right before a running event because swimming separates the muscle fibers.  That's how it feels after swimming so much and then running.  The legs feel less stable, like jello or like spaghetti as Patty pointed out.  As of now we are planning on running this Thursday in the summer series and so no swimming for us tomorrow.  However, it would be almost two days of no running if we don't do anything tomorrow and one thing I learned from my son's racing days is that it's important to run a little bit the day before the race to keep them from stiffening up.  So we are planning on doing just a short, shady run tomorrow morning just to shake the cobwebs out of our legs.  As for the orthotics, they didn't seem to bother Patty too much and as for my foot, it only hurts when I stop so we'll have to see.  During our run I was telling Patty about an interesting study I read about regarding injuries and running shoes and their correlation.  Here's an excerpt from the article:

Over the course of three large studies, the most recent of which was published last month in The American Journal of Sports Medicine, the researchers found almost no correlation at all between wearing the proper running shoes and avoiding injury. Injury rates were high among all the runners, but they were highest among the soldiers who had received shoes designed specifically for their foot types. If anything, wearing the “right” shoes for their particular foot shape had increased trainees’ chances of being hurt.

More recently, a study published online in late June in The British Journal of Sports Medicine produced results similar to those in the military experiments, this time using experienced distance runners as subjects. For the study, 81 women were classified according to their foot postures, a more comprehensive measure of foot type than arch shape. About half of the runners received shoes designated by the shoe companies as appropriate for their particular foot stance (underpronators were given cushiony shoes, overpronators motion-control shoes and so on). The rest received shoes at random. All of the women started a 13-week, half-marathon training program. By the end, about a third had missed training days because of pain, with a majority of the hurt runners wearing shoes specifically designed for their foot postures. (It’s worth noting that across the board, motion-control shoes were the most injurious for the runners. Many overpronators, who, in theory, should have benefited from motion-control shoes, complained of pain and missed training days after wearing them, as did a number of the runners with normal feet and every single underpronating runner assigned to the motion-control shoes.)

Link to the rest of the article:
Running Shoe Research

This article kind of re-affirms my belief that there is such a thing as too much support.  Anything that restricts the natural motion of the foot can't be all that good.  What I find interesting is that we tend to naturally purchase shoes that feel right for us and should only use these "recommendations" as an afterthought.  

Monday, July 26, 2010

Swimming and Shopping

Today Marathon Mom and I had made plans to go to the Camarillo Outlets for some retail therapy. Unfortunately, I was feeling a bit guilty going shopping for myself while my youngest's closet is virtually empty, since we cleaned it out for our upcoming garage sale (darn growth spurt). I reluctantly cancelled the outlet trip, but we decided that we would meet for lunch and a quick look around Macy's. I tried on swimsuits again and found another age appropriate tankini, that actually looked kind of cute, so I put it on hold to "think" about it, since I just bought one the other day that I liked. Marathon Mom is a much better shopper than I am, she doesn't get tempted by overpriced purses, and clothes, and makes decisions quickly about what she is going to buy. However, I saved her son from a frilly shirt that she was determined to get him, and pointed her in the direction of a much more manly one that I liked. We ate at the "Stone Oven" in the food court, and it was so good, it made me wish they had a drive through so I could eat their bread more often. In fact I liked everything, salad, pasta salad and sandwich, I am still full, I ate so much. Like I said Marathon Mom is a good shopper and took off on her own to stock up on school supplies and buy her kids some more school clothes. I will be doing it all at the last minute, or even after the school year starts, I am a procrastinator!

Before we met for shopping though we swam, and I really felt like I got a workout today. We swam 40 laps? By the end of our swim, my arms were so tired, that I realized that was the reason I was running out of breath, because I had stopped moving my arms, so I couldn't wait to breathe on my third stroke. I think we are making progress, Marathon Mom figured out that we need to swim over 60 laps to equal a 4 mile run. I am not there yet, but I think I am on the way!

Sunday, July 25, 2010


marathon mom

Thanks to our friend Marisol, who didn't run the race, we have these lovely pictures of us coming into the track.  It's funny how you never look the way you picture yourself running.  But then again, maybe that's a good thing because

sometimes the way I picture myself running can be pretty ridiculous.  I for one look like I'm ready to trip over the railing, which is probably pretty accurate since I am dead tired at this point.  I see the lady that Patty was really bugged about who beat her.  I think she was more bugged about the fact that it was someone in that "pee" club outfit that beat her rather than the woman's poor posture (sorry no offense to the lady).  As for C, well she just looks like she is counting the steps until she can be done and looks to be concentrating really hard.  Yeah, it wasn't pretty, but we got out there and did it again.  I was also reflecting on the fact that I saw so many of my friends' kids out there cheering for me as I was coming in and the fact that THEIR moms weren't running.  I was also thinking that they could be thinking "gee I'm glad my mom isn't out here doing this" or "gee, I wish my mom was out here running".  Whenever the subject comes up with my boys, they always seem to be proud that their mom is out there giving it a go.

Friday, July 23, 2010

A Good Laugh

This morning I met Patty for a swim and was really glad I could get off my feet.  Last night's race really did my foot in to the point where I couldn't even stand on it, let alone walk on it.  Unfortunately, I had to tell Patty that I need to stay off of it for the next two days, which means no long runs with my friends this weekend.  The pain has gotten worse, not better and the only thing that might help at this point is rest.  What I mean by rest is no running, but I can still swim.  Patty and I are really improving in our swimming techniques.  Today I swam 40 laps, most of it without a snorkel.  Only 6 of those laps were with snorkel and I'm really getting the hang of one breath to every 3 strokes.  Both of us are swimming more relaxed now too, which is also probably helping with the breathing.  I was done before Patty so I sat and watched her to do a couple of cool down laps on her back.  She must have had her eyes closed the whole time because she started out in lane 2 and ended up in lane 5.  I was yelling her name and laughing at the same time to get her attention because I didn't want her to crash into the side of the pool.  Thankfully she opened her eyes just in time to correct herself. She reminded me of one of those wind up toys you put in the bath and watch it swim in circles.  Too funny!

Afterwards we soaked up the sun for a little while and commented on how we are both dreading the start of school and having to give up these early morning swims.  At the beginning of the summer, we were kind of dreading getting back into the pool, but now I wish we would have started earlier.  Who knows, maybe if I can push my start time at work to a little later, I can still sneak in a swim or two before work.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Race Report

With the promise of cooler temps, and a new strategy for a better time, Marathon Mom, C and I showed up to run the third in the COC Summer Series. Marisol brought her 5 yr. old daughter and 3 yr. old son to run the Kiddie K, which they run right before the main event. They were so cute, her daughter was fearless and adorable with her hair up in ribbons. Her son reminded me of mine when they were that age, he got scared about halfway around and started crying. I would have given anything at that point to just do a lap around the track and be done with it.

The plan was to take the first mile at a 9 min. pace and then have something to give on the second mile (all the hills are in the second mile). This is a strategy that all the SCR's use, and they all can beat me with no problem! I really don't run all that much faster than a 9 min. pace anyway, but I kept with Marathon Mom till we crossed the first mile, I knew I was in trouble when they called out 9:21 for our first mile time. After that I really lost momentum, and by the time I got to "Killer Hill", I had a side ache, and nothing in the legs. It was super humid and the sweat just poured off of me, I truly wanted to stop. I had to walk the first two hills, and had to force myself to get going again at the top. I knew my pace was pretty slow, no matter what I did, I just couldn't speed up. When I got to the track, I wanted to sprint and tried to convince myself that we were just doing intervals, but my legs would not cooperate. I added over a minute to my last race finish time, but I have to say I felt worse all the way around. I have many excuses for why I did so poorly, but I really think it was just not my night. As I was trying to get up those hills tonight, I thought I would be just fine, if I never had to run up them again. We will see, Marisol still hasn't run a race, but I may just come out and cheer for her!

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Intervals of Swimming

Last night the girls and I showed up to run intervals with the SCRs.  It could have been cooler, but compared to last week, I'll take it.  It was a rather large group that showed up ready for the torture.  Our workout included:

3 sets of
400m-200m jog-600m-200m jog-200m
1 lap recovery
4x200 parlaufs (relay)
2 laps cool down

Most of us skipped the 1 lap recovery and opted to recover by our waters.  The interesting thing about intervals is that while you're doing them, you keep thinking there is just no way you can do another set, but then sooner than you know it, you're on the the final leg of the last set.  It really makes the workout go super fast, especially since the guy in charge gives us no breaks.  By the time I was done, I felt like I was on a merry-go-round from running in circles so much.  Then the relay or parlaufs started.  Patty had asked me to be her partner and I was really happy with that because I didn't want to pair up with anyone super fast (not that Patty isn't fast) so I can have more time to rest in between.  Then one of the women members who happens to be much faster than me asked to partner up and Patty gladly gave up her spot with me to run with C.  I barely had time to walk across the field to take up my leg of the relay when she got done with hers.  Again, the good part was that it was over quickly.  I'm always glad when I get through them, but my foot sure paid the price afterwards.

Patty and I made plans to meet up and swim at my lap pool the following morning, which was a nice change of pace and very soothing on our sore feet.  We set the timer for 30 minutes and pretty much swam nonstop until the buzzer went off and then proceeded to do a couple of more laps afterwards as a cool down.  Patty showed up in her nice new swimming suit and I think it really helped because she said this was the best she's ever done.  Both of us are still having trouble with the kickboard and working on our abs.  At least our freestyle is improving and that's all we need to keep us motivated.  We just need to see improvement.  The same goes for our interval workouts.  I totally see a difference in my fitness level after just one month of intervals.  I think this was my 4th straight interval workout.  Our next run is the COC summer series.  I do plan on taking it slow and trying a different strategy because the last one didn't work for me at all.

Monday, July 19, 2010

Facing Facebook

I was secretly sent out on a mission this morning by two mutual friends of Patty and mine to convince her that it is finally time to get on Facebook.  I understand her apprehension because I'm still new at it too and even started a FB page a few months ago and then quickly deleted it because I didn't think I liked it.  But I did give it another try a few days ago and it's really starting to grow on me.  So this morning as Patty and I met for our run at Central Park, I proceeded to tell her that we've been talking about her and even posted pictures of her on our pages so that she will be curious enough to finally get going on FB.  By the time we left Central Park and ran up to Haskell Cyn to Copperhill, I think I had her firmly convinced.  I didn't think we were going to run that far today with the heat and all, but the route we took was actually quite pleasant and shady.  The hill to Copperhill wasn't as steep as I remember it either.  The pace wasn't wonderful, but we had to stop for some rather slow lights.  It was much easier coming back with the downhill and it seemed like we were back at the park in no time.  When we got back, Patty asked me to email her from FB because it is easier to sign on that way.  I guess today's run was a productive one.

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Girl Power!

We met early this morning to try and beat the heat, but we lost! Marathon Mom, Marisol, C and I set out at 6:45 from Lowe's to see how close to 10 miles we could run. I spent a wonderful day at the beach yesterday, and enjoyed the cooler weather a little too much, getting a bad sunburn. The combination of being worn out from the sun, and the fact that I skipped my morning coffee, made me feel like my legs were just empty this morning. I was dragging before we hit the S. Fork trail, and had to stop and walk a bit before we got to the M. Mountain Pkwy underpass. I had already decided that I would turn around after the water fountain, but so had the rest of the group. We managed to get in 6.5 miles, and I don't even want to guess what the pace was. Since Marisol was with us, I feel like the pace going out was a little quicker than usual, but Marathon Mom was the only one who seemed to have anything left on the way back.

We sat inside a cool Starbucks and had our coffee (I was shaking by then), and talked a bit to other SCR's who seemed to be just as affected by the heat. When we started out this morning there was a girl who was new to the SCR's and she thought we were the whole group. We tried to politely tell her that we were SCR's, but didn't run with them because we were so slow, we liked to start before them. I think we were all feeling a little guilty for not inviting her to join us, but then at the S. Fork Trail, we saw her fly by, leading the whole group of SCR's, men and all! Another girl on a bike was so impressed by our little group of women, running and chatting that she shouted "Girl Power" to us as she passed by. I don't know how much "power" I had today, (I am trying to forget the actual run), but I did enjoy all the new chatter we had, because of the extra friends!

Friday, July 16, 2010

I'm No Mermaid

Well I am definitely no mermaid and certainly can't come close to swimming like one either.  Today I was all by myself at the pool and swam a total of 30 laps.  I swam the first 12 freestyle with no snorkel and practiced my breathing.  I worked on taking air in on one side only and breathing out while looking down and it seemed to work.  I think I have the hang of it.  I then swam another 14 laps with my snorkel and tried to get a good cardio workout by increasing my speed.  Then for the last 4 laps, I used a newly purchased kickboard to work on my abs and core.  I've heard that swimming like a mermaid helps build those key abdominal muscles.  Well, having the kickboard in front of me kicking my legs together like a mermaid got me absolutely nowhere, literally.  It was like I was just swimming in place.  Either I'm doing it all wrong or I have absolutely no strength in this area.  I did eventually figure out that if I put my head down rather than keeping it up the whole time, this helps propel me forward a little better, but it was still rather slow.  I will keep at it since it can't get any worse.  Who knows maybe if I keep trying, I'll eventually grow fins.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Too Hot!

After this morning's run at the COC XC course, there is no way in the world I could have run the race tonight.  It was already so hot this morning, I can't imagine what tonight is going to be like.  I really hope people run wisely and adjust to the heat and not over do it.  Patty and I met this morning and ran the entire summer series course along with an additional mile loop on the dirt to make it a total of 4 miles.  We started off through the campus just like the race and continued the exact first two miles of the race, but instead of heading back into the stadium, we went back out toward Killer Hill again.  The first time we ran up Killer Hill, we were met with killer cobwebs.  The whole time we were running up the hill, I could see cobwebs streaming off of Patty and onto me. It was really creepy.  My legs felt tired from all the swimming the day before and I seriously didn't think I had it in me to do another loop on Killer Hill, but amazingly, I always feel better the second time around on the hill.  Plus by then, all the cobwebs were gone.  We finally finished and sat next to our cars to cool off and left interesting impressions of our rears on the curb as we compared who had a bigger bottom.  We'll let our readers try to guess who won.

We compared today's workout to yesterday's and what a stark contrast they were.  After our run today, we felt gross, exhausted, and hot.  Yesterday after our swim, we felt so energized and relaxed.  The only thing missing was a nice cup of coffee to greet me after my swim.  I hope Patty finds a suit soon so we can swim more often because this running in the heat is pretty miserable.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Looking Good While Swimming

I don't know if it is possible at this stage of my life to look good while swimming. I mean my bathing suit is inappropriate, and ill fitting, I wear goggles and a clip in my hair, and I flop around like a bird taking a bath! I won't say anything about my friend wearing the nose clips and snorkel, but at least her head is mostly in the water. Today's swim seemed easier, I was able to swim a couple of laps without feeling like my heart was going to pound out of my chest, and Marathon Mom and I were able to swim consistantly for pretty close to 30 min. That is progress!

There was another woman swimming who started before us, and finished after us, and she must have been a former olympian she was swimming so smoothly. We studied her for a bit, and I realized that I have been breathing all wrong, and will try to adjust next time, so I am not spitting water like a whale, when I breathe out. There was also a rather large and hairy man, sporting a pretty small speedo who showed up with his flippers to get some exercise. I later regretted chuckling at him, because when I went to Big 5 later to try on bathing suits, I realized that I looked just the same squeezed into the too tight suits that were on sale this week :(. Since I had spent my entire day driving around in 100+ weather, I gave up on the suit for today, and will try again when I am not so sweaty, and maybe when they get my size.

I did enjoy starting my day with a swim, and if I could just get my gear together would like to make it a regular habit. My goggles worked great, thanks to the hubby!

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Tuesday Tortures

As if going to the dentist first thing this morning to get two cavities filled and get deep scaling done on my teeth weren't bad enough, I subjected myself to more punishment by running intervals tonight with the SCRs.  Patty was at her son's game and couldn't make it and my husband had to take my oldest son to practice so I was left to go it alone, until I decided to drag my youngest son with me.  He opted to get extra sleep this morning and skipped practice with his team in exchange for running intervals with me tonight.

As we got there, Phil (the guy who is charge of intervals) told us he was going to go "easy" tonight due to the heat and the smoke in the air.  Well his version of "easy" is everyone else's torture.  Our workout consisted of:

1 - warm up lap
2 - 300 m,  jog 100 no rest in between sets
2 - 800 m
6 - 400 m random relay ( just line up and take the next baton that comes in)
4 - 100 m strides to sprint barefoot
2 - cool down laps

I'm glad to say I finished the entire workout, although I seriously wanted to skip some of those random relays.    Even though we haven't been to intervals in a while, I feel like we haven't been doing too bad.  When Patty and I do the intervals, we're never in the back of the pack like we used to be and I haven't felt like I was holding up the workout like I used to in the past.  Either we're getting better or everyone else is slowing down.

Monday, July 12, 2010

The Talking Tummy

This morning Patty and I met at Central Park and ran a tempo run, well. . . . sort of.  We have been talking about getting away from stopping so much on our runs and at least go 3 miles without stopping.  I devised a plan for us to run along the fence and return to the entrance of the XC course to stretch before we start our 3 miles.  As soon as we finished our warm up and stretched, we immediately ran a brisk pace and didn't let up for the entire time.  For the 3 miles we ran at tempo, we ran a 9.29 pace, which is about right although I'd like to see it more around 9.2 or less; however since it is Central Park where there are hills and a lot of sand, I suppose I will cut us a break.

Funny thing about this run is that immediately when we started on the course I kept hearing water sloshing around.  I was holding a water bottle, but I'm familiar with the sound my bottle makes and this sound was much louder.  I looked over at Patty and asked her if it was her stomach and sure enough it was.  I guess she couldn't resist the coffee this morning, even though she did say should would try to cut it out before her runs.  Oh well, aside from the sloshing noise there were no ill effects from the coffee this morning so I guess it worked out fine.

It felt good to be able to run quickly and start our busy day.  Patty had to go for a foot massage and pick up her orthotics today and couldn't stay late.  Hopefully the orthotics will help with the foot pain.  I had a full day of gardening and laundry waiting for me.   My arms have been so sore from all the digging and lifting, I feel like I've been at a martial arts competition.  I can't wait for when I'm finally done.

Saturday, July 10, 2010

10 Miles = Sore Feet

Marathon Mom and I met at 6:45 today for our long run. It seems like it has been a while since we ran 10 miles, and I felt it today. We started from Lowe's and did the usual route with the SCR's, to the Wiley Bridge and back. We have been talking trying to run without all the water stops, and stretch breaks, because it just seems to drag our run out longer. I did the best I could, since I haven't been carrying water, and we stopped only once on the way back from the bridge. Unfortunately I had to run to McDonald's and use the bathroom, because there was no way I was going to make it back to Lowe's. Marathon Mom kept going and promised she would run really slow, but I never managed to catch her again. The last 2 miles were really hard, my legs were just out of juice, and my foot started to burn, where it has been hurting lately. I was sooooo tempted to cut my run short and run across the Lowe's parking lot, but I didn't, so I made the 10 miles, but I was barely moving at the end. I am going to spend today icing my feet, and won't complain when I have to go back for my foot therapy (rub) on Monday.

To make matters worse, my so called friend, was standing with a group of SCR's telling them why I made a pit stop, so they all chimed in with advice on how to avoid potty stops on a run. I guess I will try giving up my cup of coffee before these morning runs and see if that helps. At least I didn't duck into a bush and do my business, like the lady at the race Thurs. I will never be that dedicated a runner!

Thursday, July 8, 2010

That Sucked!

Tonight was the first race of the COC Summer Series and I had high hopes that I would do well because of the cooler temps.  Everything was perfect, smaller crowd, nice cool temps, you couldn't have asked for better conditions because for those who have run the Summer Series, it can really suck.

The first mile wasn't too bad for me.  I didn't feel like I was fighting through a bunch of squirly kids, just a couple of big guys blocking the path.  I came through the first mile in my usual 8.3 pace and I think Patty wasnt' too far behind.  It was the second mile that really took it out of me.  I must have ran it too fast because I developed a side stitch and had to stop and walk the entire uphill and came through the second mile rather slow at 19 minutes.  I was walking for quite a while when Patty came along and convinced me to keep going.  If she hadn't, I think I would still be up there.  Once I finally started running again, I was able to run through the cramp and finish in 26.41 and I think Patty had a huge PR of 27:20?  I think intervals are paying off for her.

The weird thing is that I was so focused on finishing the darn race that I never saw the lady wearing the Moms in Motion shirt pop out of the bushes after going pee.  I guess Patty caught the whole thing!  I'm actually glad I didn't see that otherwise it really would have distracted me.  Now we're never joining that club!  Seriously, if it's that bad, wouldn't you just stop and go into the bathroom?  There's 6 more races left for goodness sake.  That has to be one of the weirdest things to happen during a race, but then again perhaps we are being unfair to our own gender since we see guys peeing along race routes all the time.

So now that my first race really sucked, I guess it could only get better from here right?  I know I said I probably won't do another one after this first one, but since it was so terrible, I feel I have to redeem myself.

Monday, July 5, 2010

Independence Day

Can you imagine a more gorgeous place to run?  I guess that's why I'm willing to run a race with virtually no oxygen with a bunch of strangers on the Fourth of July in the middle of the day and have cotton mouth the entire time I'm running.  I almost didn't run the race because the day before my foot was hurting me so much that my husband and Picture Lady were trying to convince me not to run, but I knew that I would really regret it if I didn't.

When I showed up at the start on race day and was waiting for the restrooms, I was talking to a man and his family.  He was worried that everyone looked really fast and the race looked really fast too and I told him not to worry because it really is low key.  I mean, come on, how serious can you take a race when you have a clown, Uncle Sam, a man with a fly fishing reel, and a bunch of dogs in the same race?  He then asked me if I enter a lot of races because I look really familiar.  I told him not really, but people always say I look familiar and I told him I didn't live around Mammoth, but was from the Santa Clarita Valley.  He then said, "that's why you look so familiar! I live in Valencia and I see you and your friends running all the time!"  As it turns out, his son goes to Bridgeport Elementary.  Such a small world.

The race finally started with Deena Kaster as the MC.  Gosh she is really skinny!  I really struggled getting out and had to work through the little kids and the golden retriever that wouldn't behave and was jumping around in front of me because it's owner couldn't control the leash.  As the crowd began to thin, I was feeling pretty decent, but knew not to get too confident at this elevation.  And then that's when it hits, exactly the same place as last time, the 1/2 mile mark.  There's suddenly no air.  You keep gasping and breathing, but it does no good.  You literally feel like a fish out of water and it is the strangest feeling.  You are going through the motions of breathing, but it feels like no air is coming into your lungs.  Finally after I got over the last uphill part, I could feel my legs and lungs coming back to me and had my sights on the finish.  I was determined not to let the old man in the green running outfit beat me (you can see him in the video) or the guy with the fly fishing equipment and I was finally able to beat the old lady that got me last time.  I think I came in around 8:06 and would have liked to get under 8, but I had too slow of a start and couldn't make up the time.  My husband videoed the last part of my race.

I can't wait to hear how Marisol's race went this weekend and if Patty decided to enter the race too.  I'm sure I'll hear all about it soon.  Next year, I would love all my friends to join me up at Mammoth to celebrate Independence Day and to run the Freedom Mile of course.  I think I have Picture Lady convinced to run it next year.

Friday, July 2, 2010

Running in Circles

Marathon Mom, Marisol, and I met at Peet's this morning for a run before we started our busy days, or for them, busy weekends. I had a doctor's appt. to get to, so we decided not to try and make it a long run. Marisol wanted to run the Train Bridge loop, instead of an out and back, so we headed out toward the bridge hoping that the workers would let us cross. We got lucky, because there was no one working today, probably already started on their holiday weekend. We made it to Newhall Ranch Road, crossed to the other side of the trail and headed back towards Peet's. It really was a pleasant run for me, legs felt fine, and feet weren't hurting. We didn't set any records 3.7 miles at a 9.5 pace, but it was nice to have a little more in the legs compared to yesterday's run.

We got to sit outside at Peet's and chat for a few minutes, before Marathon Mom left to get her weekend in Mammoth started, Marisol went home to a house full of visiting relatives, and I went home to rush off to the foot doctor. Well the doctor never showed up, who knew there were surgical foot emergencies! I was kind of frustrated to have to wait till next week, since it was the most exciting thing I had planned :(.

Marathon Mom is going to run the Freedom Mile race in Mammoth, and Marisol and her family are going to race the Independence Day 5K at Newhall Park. My husband and I are still discussing whether we want to go out and run the ID 5K, or not, I will let you know. Have a Happy 4th!

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Sleepy Legs

On this morning's run from Central Park, Patty's and my legs were still asleep.  Mine were feeling very heavy from the lack of sleep and long drive in the car the day before.  I think Patty was still feeling the intervals from Tuesday night.  We were already sick of the Central Park scenery and decided to head out on Bouquet towards Plum for a shadier 4 mile run.  I have to say for me, my legs really didn't wake up until we started coming back going slightly downhill.  Patty said she felt a little better once we left the park.  There are just some days when you can't will your legs to go. Both of us have been experiencing some foot pain and Patty's hip is starting to bother her too.  Perhaps we should both get new shoes and just stop complaining about it. I sense a possible shopping trip coming up!

I think it was the summer heat that kept both of us up last night.  We lost our nice fog layer and it never really cooled off last night.  There was no breeze and it felt very humid and muggy.  With the 4th of July coming up this weekend, I'm glad I'll be in Mammoth.  I will be running in the Freedom Mile while Marisol and possibly Patty will be running the 4th of July 5k here in Santa Clarita.  I think I'll be in the better race.  I would much prefer running at 8000 ft elevation for only one mile at cooler temps than running here at Santa Clarita at 8 a.m.for 3.1 miles in the heat.