Year in Review and 2018 Running Goals

When I first started running in August, I couldn’t even run a half-mile without being winded and running at a super slow pace. Five months later, I’m up to a long run of 7 miles… I’ve come a long way!

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Completed Races

 

2018 Running Goals

12 Half marathons (2)

  • 12 in 12 in 12: Run 12 half-marathons in 12 months in 12 states in 2018
  • Complete a Ragnar Relay (May 2018)
  • Start strength training again
  • Go back to increasing my daily protein intake
  • Stretch properly and use the roller stick before and after each run

 

2018 Registered & Tentative Races
*=registered

2018 Race states

5 last-minute gifts under $20 for the new runner in your life

Elite Mini Muscle Roller – $12.99

I personally swear by my muscle roller now. At first, I thought it was just runner folklore, but it has really saved my life. I had such bad calf cramps that my foot would go numb for most of the run. Since I’ve started rolling beforehand, I’ve had ZERO numbness! It’s also great post-run to avoid knots and aches.

LED Safety Light 2-Pack – $12.49

Now that it’s winter and it gets dark at basically noon every day (sorry, I’m a little bitter), most runners will end up running in the dark at least a few times a week. These clip-on lights are great to keep them visible to cars (and other people) during runs.

The Complete Runner’s Day-By-Day Log 2018 Calendar – $14.99 (on sale for $10.39)

When training for fitness or for a race, staying accountable to yourself is one of the best motivators. I find that when I’m logging my runs and training, I’m the most successful and consistent about running. It’s especially nice to look back and see how far I’ve come in a short amount of time.

Road ID Sprint Shoe ID & the Silicone ID Bracelet – $19.99 each

We often don’t want to think about the bad things that could happen, but runners must be prepared for the worst, especially if they run alone. If a runner faints or gets hurt, the RoadID can help identify him or her and allow their loved ones to be notified of their whereabouts. Be safe, not sorry!

 

 

 

BONDIBAND Fab $5 Collection – $5 Each

These days, I don’t run without one of my BONDIBANDs. It keeps the sweat out of my eyes and from running down my face. It also keeps my ears warm during the colder temps. I bought one years ago that I swore by, but I recently ordered two customized bands — one with the Run. Travel. Dream. logo and another that reminds me that I’m “stronger than yesterday.” Great product!

 

 

Week 14 recap & tallies

I started off week 14 with a 6-mile run-walk Monday on a city running tour in Honolulu. I forgot to pause it during miles 2 and 5 when we stopped for snacks and photos, so the time is screwy. My shin was sore, so I popped some Motrin and did a lot of pre-run stretching. I got through! I also found a rainbow (above my sweaty head).

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At the end of week 14, I got in another 6 miles: to the park, around the park, and home… but I had to walk most of the last mile… my right calf cramped badly and my right foot was completely numb. It didn’t help that my watch face froze most of the run, then wouldn’t allow me to click done after. So I took a photo of it for the blog. Overall, I felt good during most of the run, keeping about a 12-minute pace until I walked.

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I’m making progress though: 2.5 months ago I couldn’t run a half mile. Aches and pains are all part of the process, right? The black tee is my post-run mood lately… lol.

This week, I also got my new 2018 planner. 2017 has been amazing… now, it’s time to get cracking on next year with my new planner from May Designs.

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Here’s my tally for the last 3 weeks:

***TOTALS***Measure

Week 12: 6 miles ran

Week 13: 2 miles ran (the shin sidelined me)

Week 14: 12.2 miles ran/walked

18 days til next 5K

67 days til FIRST 10K

107 days til Half-Marathon –> I’m running for St. Jude, support me!

Massages for runners

lower-back-massage_4460x4460Knowing that I was planning on pushing it at the race on Sunday, I had already scheduled a 2-hour massage at Massage Envy later in the week. I’m glad I did, because immediately after the 5k, my left hip started aching — even when I walked (the leg is my good leg, so it was probably compensating for my right).

Two days later, I walked in for my massage, still with an achy hip. I had a masseuse I’ve never tried before, but by the time he pushed, pulled, stretched and kneaded, my hip was pain-free. My gluts, sacrum and IT Band were apparently the problem spots.

I was supposed to have a run that day, but I skipped as not to jack myself up again so soon after being realigned. I’m glad I did… because by that night, I was super sore from all the kneading (especially when sitting down on my gluts!).

Today, that soreness is gone, and I feel really good. But, all of this led me to look up what other runners think about massage and how they use it in their training programs.

This article from Competitor outlines the four best massages for runners: Active Release Technique, Swedish massage, Trigger Point, and Deep Tissue massage (I am pretty sure he used at least 3 of these 4 techniques with me on Tuesday). In the article, Coach Jeff gives great advice on when to schedule massages and how often:

If you’re able to afford it, getting a monthly or weekly massage can help prevent injuries by catching tight areas before they become problematic. If it isn’t possible to fit a recurring massage into your schedule (or budget), consider getting one or two during your hardest training block or if you’re doing a lot of speed work, which tends to elicit injuries that can be treated by massage, like tight hamstrings or hips.

QUESTION — Do YOU incorporate massage into your training regimen? And if so, when do you schedule them, and how often?

Florida Days 5 & 6: Water parks & Magic Kingdom

We finished off the weekend at Seaworld’s Aquatica Water Park and Magic Kingdom.

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I did OK with low-carb over the weekend… lots of salads, at least until last night’s dinner at Bonefish Grill (yum!). I had seared ahi tuna for appetizer and lobster tail with scallops and double vegetable instead of the other carb-y sides.

did have a small piece of Mom’s funnel cake today at Magic Kingdom which was DE-lightful!

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Unfortunately, I missed doing my squats last night. But, given the fact that I walked about 9-10 miles between the two days and walked 20 flights of stairs according to Garmin (all of those tall water slides!), I honestly don’t feel so bad.

Tonight, I’m slated for 85 squats, plus 85 sit ups and 40 pushups. Tomorrow, starts week 3!

 

 

Another 1.5 miles in the bank!

Another good run today. This time in the new kicks. No pain, but i could feel that my “bad” ankle was getting a workout today. The girlfriend from Monday ran with me again today, which was nice. I could tell that this 1.5 miles was a lot easier on us than Monday’s run. Progress!

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I also noticed that my max heart rate today was not as high as my very first 1.5 mile run-walk-run. More progress!

Today's heart rate
Today’s heart rate along the 1.5 mile run.
Initial run heart rate
My heart rate on the first 1.5 mile run-walk-run I did.

I treated myself to a matinee with a girlfriend after, but not before a strawberry protein shake and my usual hot water soak with my favorite two products (I swear by them… the only way I can walk after pushing myself like this) — CVS Muscle Relief and Elemis Aching Muscle Super Soak.

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What’s YOUR post-run routine?