Thursday, April 29, 2010


Tonight my goal was 30 minutes. While again, I fell short of this goal, I did increase my distance/time 25% so I still feel it was success. I am still have such stabbing, shooting pain in my hip and leg. I think my strong leg is compensating and I will start to feel pain in the good one now too. I'm wondering where that line is between when I just suck it up and keep running and when it is becoming an injury that I need to take care of.

Good thing: I feel very strong ~ strong lungs, strong heart, strong muscles, I truly feel prepared physically and mentally. My only problem is that !@#$%^ IT band. I have even been doing positive self talk during the day, "You're strong, just walk it off, it will get better." Nope. This is what bothers me. I stretch more now than ever before.

J says I just need RICE:

I must admit I've only been getting an average of like 4 hrs sleep this week per night. That's been rough! If I were well-rested I'm sure I would do much better. I feel like I'm running like I was at the very beginnning. I've lost everything I've gained the past couple months. :\

2 mile run; .25 walk; RPE - 4

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Post race recovery

Well, I read the last chapter of The Non-Runner's Marathon Trainer when I got home. It suggested I take it easy after my [half]marathon. So, given my blistered toes and aching knee, hip, IT band, I decided I would run only 20 min at a slower pace. Wasn't sure I would even get that much, but J said she did 3 miles this morning so I had to at least try. She is still planning on the 18 mile run. The last chapter said to listen to your body and recover as quickly or slowly as necessary. I know I have to get running soon to loosen up my sore muscles and that leg.

I got on the treadmill because I thought if the pain gets too bad I'm not stranded out in the middle of nowhere. I really felt like a limping runner, like I had two artificial legs. I was hanging on to the rails as if I was on ice skates for the first time afraid to let go of the ledge. At first I put most of my weight on my arms. Then, slowly, I let the weight go to my legs and was able to run freely. The pain was nasty! I had to keep going to loosen the muscles though. This was key to repairing any damage. I have been eating protein like crazy trying to help them as well. I made it 15 minutes and just felt like that was enough. I walked the last 5 minutes. It felt like my left leg was compensating too much for the pain of the right and that I would have 2 bum legs rather than just one so I stopped.

Sleep is at a premium lately, too. I feel like I am really getting down in the dumps. It is totally amazing to me that I just ran a half marathon, but at the same time, I've run farther than that. I am not recovering from last Saturday. Can I seriously do a full marathon? Will I really be ready to do Dam to Dam? Maybe I pushed it too much. My lungs and heart felt great, but my legs were working too hard.

15 min run; 5 min walk; RPE - 5

Saturday, April 24, 2010

Drake Half Marathon

Well, I achieved my initial goal: complete a half marathon. I must say, it was sooo exciting! Adrenaline carried me through the first five miles. I smiled every mile.

Before the race, everyone started assembling at the start line. We became more and more crowded. There were people of all ages, 10 to 71. I think I saw both of them and everyone in between. An announcer made continual countdowns to the start time. I worried that we were maybe a little too close to the starting line. I was with J and wanted to run with her as much as possible, but thought we should have been farther back to allow the faster runners up front. She is a great inspiration and pace setter for me that I felt a stronger need to stay with her. The shot gun went off and the line moved rather slowly until we all got up to pace. We moved as a wave of bobbing heads. Excitement mounted. People were passing me like crazy. It was ok. My goal was to finish, nothing more.

It was so exciting to see all the people lining the streets, cheering on the runners. There were cowbells, little kids giving high fives to the runners, trainers offering verbal support to their team, people dressed up in costumes, etc. It was humbling to know that all these people were blindly cheering on total strangers. We were treated like royalty by everyone. Even when we stopped at a convenience store afterward, a few signs read "No public restrooms". I went inside and asked if "public" meant not even customers. I was prepared to just walk out, but he looked at me and J in our running attire, then to our numbers and medals, and said, "for the Drake runners, come on back!" At mile 2 we started seeing the 8K runners coming back. All the runners cheered for them as they were really pushing it back to the finish line. We later saw a woman running. Someone said, "Hey, that's the first woman!" Cheers erupted for her. It's this positive, encouraging environment that made the whole experience breathtaking and make me want to do it again.

I had loaded up on carbs all week in preparation of the run. I knew I was really scheduled to run 18 today so 13 was going to be easy. It's been 4 weeks since I've run that few miles in one run so I was just going to take it all in. I had only run 6 miles since last Sunday morning. I worked the foam roller on my legs and low back. That was incredibly helpful! I felt so prepared for the race.

As I said, the first 5 miles flew by! It was a great feeling. The gradual 3 mile climb was a struggle toward the end of mile 6, but I felt great about 1/2 mile later. We were averaging 9 min miles. wow that was fast, but we kept the pace. My fan club was really moving around to find a place to cheer me on. Miles 7-11 were getting progressively more difficult, but we started passing other people regularly. I had lots of self-talk and positive thinking because J was so focused and just not talking like she usually does. She said we were not doing our usual conversation pace. Just when I needed it, I saw my family. That helped me get through the pain and the hills, not that they were really that bad. I knew I had a big, gradual hill coming at mile 10 so I was mentally preparing myself for that. Mile 11 proved to be challenging as I was not prepared for those hills. I really didn't remember the hills at this point. I thought if I could make it through mile 10 I was home free. This is where the mental game got me. J was still running with me, but I felt we were slowing. I looked at her and said, "no matter where we are, you need to finish in front of me!" She just looked at me and smiled. At mile 12 she said, "well, if I'm going to make 2 hrs 5 min I need to go". I said, "GO!!" She forged ahead. No matter if I run 3 miles or 13, my last mile is always the worst. I think it's part of the mental game: you're almost done. Then, I shut down. I feel all the pain, anguish, struggle of the run. Only 1 more mile left. I can do it! It's only a mile. I visualized "to the end of the road past school and back". No problem. I've done it 100 times. One foot in front of the other. I felt myself slow to a crawl. People were passing me like crazy. That made me down, too. Just finish. That's all you have to do is finish. A water station was coming. I stopped to take a drink. A man who talked like a trainer was really encouraging me with lots of positive talk. I threw my cup to the side and thanked him. I kept going. I got a little farther and just couldn't go anymore. I stopped. It was probably only about 20 seconds, but it felt like an eternity! I said, ok, move your feet. Get going. You can do this! I was getting lightheaded again, my heads was falling back like I was falling asleep mid-stride. I consciously lifted my head, shoulders back, feet forward, one after another. Do it for Grandma! [I decided I would run the race for her.] I turned the corner and thought, ok 3 more blocks...or was it 4? I could barely see J up ahead. All of a sudden I hear on the loudspeaker "Janet Potter!" She had finished. I then heard another trainer shout, "empty the tank!!" That gave me a very brief burst of energy. It seemed like another eternity to get to the finish line. People passed me left and right. It was like they were getting a second wind and I had hit the wall. I had so many carbs this week. Maybe I went too fast at the beginning. OK, I went too fast at the beginning. Finally I could see the finish line with my own eyes. It's right there. I saw the final legs of all my difficult runs in the past. I made it through. I WAS going to finish this race running! I felt like I was so out of it and I was swerving all over the street. Oh great, that's just what I needed...pass out feet from the finish line and have everyone panic and come running to help me. No, that's NOT going to happen. I can do this. I heard "Kimberly Huegerich!" from the announcer. What?! I hadn't even hit the blue finish mat. Hitting the mat, a man announced, "2:07:XX" YES! Not bad, still within my unofficial goal.

Once I got past the mats I just wanted to collapse. I was staggering all over. I gulped 2 big glasses of water and staggered to the shoot. I saw J. I smiled. It was over. She came and greeted me. I was only 2 minutes slower coming in. We walked it off a little and she said, "You need to get your medal on. Let me help you with that. Bill and your kids can't see you without your medal!". My legs were jello. We looked around for everyone, but didn't see anyone. We went to the food tent and I gulped another box of juice, walked 2 feet and grabbed another juice. I loaded up on bagels, pears, cookies, bananas, etc. I ate a bagel bite, a cookie, and then a pear. I tried to eat a banana. It was perfectly ripe, but felt stuffed so I threw away the last 1/4 of it. It was a GREAT! run. I just kept smiling....

During the run I got lightheaded about 3-4 times. I don't know if I was slightly dehydrated, fatigued, or what happened, but was a little concerned. I really wanted to walk a few times, but I kept going. I'm glad I did. I just walked for a few seconds the last mile. Having J with me really kept me going. I don't know if I could do this all by myself, but I'm still smiling...

13.1 mile run; some light walking; RPE - 4; excitement - unchartable!

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Foam Roller

YEAH! It came yesterday! I did some searching on youtube for some videos on how to use it. Found some GREAT! videos for IT Band. It was like a deep massage; just what I needed. When I woke up this morning I felt great! I think Sat is possible. I also found a rather large, deep bruise on my knee. It really hurts to run. At least I don't have problems with my leg as much. I'll have to ice my knee to help that.

My run actually went rather well. I even ran up the school hill toward the end. I felt like I was really huffing and puffing, though. I did 3 miles and thought, ok I still need another 10 miles of hills, wind, and driving rain. I think I had a pretty good pace as I was home within 35 min, including cool down walk. I came home, stretched, and rolled on my foam tube again.

I've been eating lots of carbs this week to fuel my muscles. I've been consciously drinking lots of water, too, and no wine. ;)

3.16 mile run; .2 mile walk; RPE - 4

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Sick day run

Well, Claire woke up with a temp this morning and Matt was "barking" so I stayed home. This gave me great time to catch up on some running. Because of the run this coming weekend, I decided to back off on the running this week to let my muscles rest. Right before lunch I went to the treadmill.

J and I have been chatting about my ITBS problem. She suggested some treadmill time rather than street time, and ice. Yesterday I used a lot of ice. That was GREAT! I'll have to sleep on a bed of ice Friday night. haha. Starting the run is always the worst. I wanted to get that recovery run done and over with today. It's always a bad one. I am rubbing my legs and doing extra stretching the past few days, hoping that will help also. Right now I am mentally preparing for vicious wind, rain, hills miles 3-6 and 8-10. I can do it! I'm telling myself rain is good. The hills aren't so least I'm not in the mountains.

This run is over so I can put in one more run to keep me loosened up and ready for Saturday.

3 mi run; .25 mi walk; RPE - 3; muscles - YAOW!

Sunday, April 18, 2010

GU goo

I just wasn't into this run today. I really wanted to run last night, but was scheduled to run with J this morning. I woke up at 4:15, felt like rolling over again, but got up anyway. I later saw the Prom bus coming back when I wanted to leave. I finally just left at 5:10 so I wouldn't be late to meet J. I must have been making good time because I was about 8 min early meeting her. Great feeling!

I started the run with a new sample of GU gel. That was absolutely the weirdest thing I've ever had. It was so hard to choke down. Not sure I will be able to eat those things throughout the run. yuck. It almost made me sick. Guess it's just something I'll have ot get used to, like drinking fluids. The first one was tri-berry. Flavor-wise, it was ok, but not something I'd die to have again. When I got to J's I had a strawberry banana one. Eating it was totally disgusting again, but the flavor was pretty good. I just couldn't bring myself to eat another one on the run. It left my fingers very sticky and gross the rest of the run.

I was totally exhausted on the run. She usually has to "pull" me the last mile or two. My hip (ITBand) was feeling a little better today. At least I didn't nearly fall over when I got out of bed. The first 5 miles without her were so very hard. I really felt like I was doggin it. I needed lots of strong inner voice going. All I could think was I had 11 more miles to go after that; 21 for an actual marathon. That kinda got me down for the rest of the run. I really had to push myself.

I feel like I'm getting down again on everything and that a marathon is out of reach again. I have to get over this because next week is the Drake Half. I am anticipating cold and storms. I may have to go shopping for better running clothes if this is the case. :( I just hope there isn't lots of wind. I really really want to finish in 2 1/2 hrs. I know I'm not supposed to have time goals like this, but anyone finishing in that time gets a medal. How cool would that be?! It's a very attainable goal for me as I've been averaging less than 10-min mile. They secure the route for an 11-min pace which even if I slow way down or something happens, I think I will still be able to reach that.

16 mile run; .5 mile walk; RPE - 4

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Injinji & ITBS

When I got home tonight there was a package at the back door. Bill had ordered some Injinji running socks for me to avoid blisters. They are toe socks so i was completely unimpressed. He talked them up as if they were miracle socks for running. "Hope they do my dishes too!" is what I was really thinking. The package claims to "properly align toes for better posture, gripping and balance ... increased dexterity and tactile sensitivity ... strengthens the muscles in foot and leg ... " Yeahhh, right.

OK, so I ran and at minimum my blisters weren't any worse. I had to wear them around the house to get used to someting between my toes. When I first put on my shoes, it felt as if I had so much more room in my shoes. I was expecting the exact opposite. I did some stretching and went downstairs because the weather was bad outside. I have developed some pretty good callouses on my toes so that is good.

My hip has been bothering me since my last big run. J mentioned that it might be my IT Band and I should look for some ITBS testing, uh I mean ITBStretches. While I don't think they are doing much for me, I was at least able to walk today. I ran a good run tonight. I thought if the socks are too weird, my leg hurts too much, or something else comes up, I will only do 4-5 miles, but I got all 8 done tonight. That was a good accomplihsment.

I got signed up for my first 1/2 marathon! It was a whim really. J was telling me about the Drake Half and how the deadline was this week. I went home, did some internet browsing, and wha-la! The date was actually cleared on my calendar so it was meant to be. It's fun to think that I will be "only" running 13 miles that day.

Run 8 miles; walk .5 miles; RPE - 3.5

Monday, April 12, 2010

a short recovery run

14 mph winds again today. I was going to run around the south loop, but wanted to avoid the winds. I really only ran about 4 miles. Again, the recovery run was tough. I was going to run in the winds no matter what! "It just doesn't matter".

I mixed up some Gatorade and took off. I first headed west with the wind about 1.5 miles and then back into town. That was a tough one, but good resistence training for me. I figured over 20mph run considering the headwind and the 6mph average I usually run.

Got myself signed up for the Drake 1/2 marathon. I have 2.5 hrs to complete it and get a medal. I know I can do that. I am so excited!! Looking forward to it in a couple weeks. I am scheduled to run 18 miles that weekend so I will keep thinking 18, but finish a little early.

4 mi run; .25 mi walk; RPE - 4

Saturday, April 10, 2010

I will NOT get blisters

Ok, I've had it with blisters! I woke up this morning, got out the band-aids and wrapped up my toes. 6 bandaids and 16 miles later it worked! YEAH! I also used my new Body Glide and didn't get the chaffing and cuts like I usually do. These two things alone made it a very successful run. SOOOooo excited!

We ran out to the blacktop that turns to Kamrar today. J had never been that far out that directions and it was another one of my fears...can I really go that far? I had to do it. We "found" a dog who had a vicious bark. Fortunately, a car came slowly so he went after that and left us alone. We also saw/heard tons of other dogs this morning.

It was a beautiful morning for a run. I stepped outside and it was so incredibly clear. I don't think I've ever seen so many stars from in town. I love running when the sun is coming up. We had to start at like 4:45 this morning because of my hectic schedule, but it was so nice to see the sunrise. That is perhaps my favorite part of outside morning running.

Overall, it was a relatively hard run. I really felt like I was working hard most of the way. There was one time I was a little concerned about my breathing; it was like I couldn't catch my breath, almost hyperventilating. I almost stopped, but got control of myself. It was kinda scarry, but I think I have a better appreciation for what asthma people feel like.

16 mile run; .4 mile walk; RPE-4.5

Thursday, April 8, 2010

2 steps forward; 1 back

ARGH!!! OK, I'm down 10 miles on my schedule this week so I knew I had to run today. Since my shortest runs are now 5 miles my goal was do at least 5 today. All day I was thinking I would run to Ellsworth and back (8 miles), but after school things got rather crazy. It was 6:00 and there was no plan for supper yet. Bill is frustrated that I don't eat with the family much anymore so I decided to throw left overs on the table and eat with my family tonight. That meant I had to wait at least an hour or two or I would get sick. I finally got to running at 8:30.

It was so dark that I just reverted to the basement again. This is becoming my safety net because of my blisters. If they get bad, I can just stop. If I'm out in the middle of nowhere, 6 miles from home, it's a little more difficult. Well, tonight I got myself a fresh blister. The ginormous big toe blister is becoming tolerable so I just put a couple bandaids on that one and went running. I should have bandaged the index toe right beside it though. Dang. I could feel it at about mile 1.6; I knew I was in trouble. I just kept thinking, "at least I'm not doing another 14.4 miles!" It was a tough run tonight. I didn't get much out of my show because I could feel the blister getting bigger and deeper. Dang!

I was a little more conscious of my feet tonight. I can't watch them for reason though, not sure why. ??? But I was thinking of how my toes are situated in the shoes at each step. I tried to run "normal". I tried to run with my toes scrunched up, all together. I tried to run with them fanned out like webbed duck feet. I tried to curl them. I tried everything. After all this, I think my normal run is making them slightly curled, but only on the left side. This may be why the tip is getting blistered. However, the blister seems to appear more on the top edge of the toe, right above the toenail.

5 mi run; .5 mi walk; RPE - 3.5

Wednesday, April 7, 2010


Tonight was the last CCD night so I'm hoping things will start to settle down again in my schedule. Running is really start to take a lot of time with these longer runs. I had a 12+ hr day today, came home, rounded up the troops, headed out and back again at 8:00ish. Get everyone to bed so I could run.

Because it was so dark, I have been running on the treadmill for these shorter runs. I was determined to get at least 5 miles in. My schedule dictates 5-8-5-16 miles this week. At 5 miles I was still feeling strong so I kept going to 8. I feel like it has been a looong time since I ran (5 days), but it was a really good run and it gave my toes time to heal.

While running tonight I burped vomit. yuck! I have also had stomach aches lately with no appetite. I hope I'm not getting sick. I think maybe I just need some sleep. That was the main reason I didn't run last night: I thought sleep would be better than running.

8 mile run; .25 walk; RPE - 2.5

Saturday, April 3, 2010

I'm Too Sexy

Bill loaded up my ipod with a playlist that took me all the way through a 16-mi run this morning. At around mile 11 I started feeling crappy, probably looked crappy, and then all of a sudden "I'm Too Sexy" came on the playlist. I laughed and it pushed me through the remaining 5 miles. Great! At about mile 14 I heard, "Everybody Hurts". 2 more miles...

I was a little concerned all week because they were forecasting winds, thunderstorms, all around bad weather for today. I kept looking at the weather. The winds were consistently at 10-14 mph. This morning I woke up at 5 and the predictions showed 5-10 until about 8 this morning. I can do that! It was beautiful weather all week so I was so hoping for shorts today, but the temps stayed in the 30s so I thought better of it. Good thing.

The Battle of the Blisters rages on. I thought I had sufficiently calloused my big toe, but when I got home, took off my shoes, I felt as though I had a 6th toe growing there the blister was so big. I finally popped it because it was really bothering my other toes and red "juice" came spewing out. ugh. It is sooooo painful; just a touch from my other toe is like knife stab. I have a new place for a blister: under my index toe. It is starting to spread to the inner side of my toe. The blister on the tip of my left middle toe is still reappearing also. Any other blister prevention strategies? Given all this, the shoes are MUCH better than the old ones. Perhaps a wide would have been better? Maybe I just have fat toes and that's not good running toes.

All in all, it was a good run. I felt slower than usual, but I finished having run all the way. That's my goal: finish. Ironically I didn't do a lot of mental preparation this week. If anything, it was a negative mental week this week as I wasn't expecting to be running today. With Easter tomorrow I thought maybe I wouldn't get this big run in this week. J only had 14 miles so I ran 2 before meeting her. That is probably best as I tend to dart out of the start box. It takes a few miles to get in the groove. Seems like running is always in the back of mind, thinking about the big run of the week. Not this week. I just got up and started running. Got through the difficult parts and stopped when it was over. Guess that's a good thing; maybe it's becoming "normal". However, just like childbirth, it's the after affects that are gettting me! I will birth a hundred kids, but the recovery sticks around for weeks.

16 mi run; .5 mi walk; RPE - 4

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Back to the basement

Well, I did a 7 mile run last night in the basement on the treadmill. I feel like I cheated, but I was o very busy and I didn't feel like running in the dark last night so I just went downstairs. I got to watch Lost for the first time in what seems like forever.

The run was really great. I really needed a good one to follow the last one. Not sure why I have a crappy run after a long run. It was mostly an easy run. I tried to visualize where I was outside on my run at different mile markers. I got down to the last 1.5 miles and it started getting tough, but overall it was great.

I am still having problems with the middle left toetip. I pulled a bunch more skin off it the other night before so it looked quite ugly. When I got done running, I looked at it again and the blister seemed to be deeper and bigger. ugh, will this ever go away?

7 mi run; .5 mi walk; RPE 3.5