Monday, August 21, 2017

Half Marathon and Marathon Training Update

I have officially started my half marathon/marathon training!! This past week is the first week I have on my schedule. I planned for 9 weeks to train for the Detroit Free Press International Half Marathon and then the 22 weeks after that to train for the Asheville Marathon. I do have several other races mingled in along the way!!

I would normally recomend 12 weeks for half training but I already kind of had a base built up.

This week my plan looked like this:

3 Mile Walk
4 mile run
4 mile run
4 mile run
7 Miles
Cross Train (Hike/Bike/Swim)

I ended up walking 3.7 miles on Monday morning.

On Tuesday morning I ran a 3 mile interval run followed by a 1 mile walk and got in another mile Tuesday evening with my dogs in the woods.

This past week and weekend have been very emotional for me with Tess going off to college so I ended up mostly walking the rest of the week. That said I skipped Wednesday all together and ended up walking 3 miles Thursday morning and 3 miles Friday morning.

I am so thankful for my running friends who showed up for me on these days. More than anything I needed to talk and walk and cry about adjusting to this time of change.

Friday was move in day so we walked a LOT of stairs all day (cross training right?!) so last minute I changed my weekend running plans and elected to sleep in on Saturday.

I slept until 9:30 on Saturday which is unheard of. I am not sure I have ever slept that late before. I also spent half the day in my PJ’s. I did clean house so the day was not a total loss. It was actually kind of nice to not really have any plans or any schedule. My hubby and I enjoyed a date night out to our favorite date night spot in Lake Lure Saturday evening.

Sunday I got up at 6am and headed out for a 7 mile training run at 7am. It was amazing!

I had all these crazy conversations going on inside my head on the way there. I was going to be running long solo for the first time in a long time. I also wanted to run non stop. I have been running intervals mostly for quite some time. Until two weeks ago when a running buddy ran with me non stop for 6 miles and I want to keep going!

My inner pessimist/enabler told me that since my friends weren’t running with me I could just bail on this weekends run and make it up some other time. My inner pessimist/enabler also told me that if I didn’t feel like running non stop I could just do whatever I wanted. I could run three miles, I could just walk, I could do intervals and take as long of a walk break as I wanted to.

I got to the parking lot where I would begin and had decided instead to listen to my inner cheerleader that said you can do this!

I decided I would run out 4 miles and back 3 miles to complete my 7 mile run and then walk 1 last mile back to my car as a cool down. Giving myself that 1 mile walk felt like a reward and it was just the reward I needed!

Throughout my run I kept going a bit faster than I wanted to, I have planned to stay around a 10:40/mile pace but my legs had one speed and I ran at a 10:22/mile pace instead. I kept having to remind my self to slow down. There were a few times where I thought I wanted to stop but I cranked up my music and had a mini dance party on the greenway to get back into the groove.


I ran out just a tad bit more that 4 miles out before turning for the final 3 miles so I actually cooled down on a little over a 1 mile walk. I switched from my gangster rap running play list to a moving meditation podcast for the walk and it was like jumping in the river for a cool down. It was so refreshing and made me focus on all the wonder of the world around me and all the amazing things in my life. For that mile I just felt so in the moment and alive! I highly recommend finding a moving meditation to listen to on a solo walk, it was wonderful!

Even though I went off track a bit mid week I am feeling great about where I am in my training!

Cheers to the start of a new week! May we all remember to wake up each day with an attitude of gratitude and be thankful for the new day!

Grace, peace, love to you,

Friday, August 18, 2017

High Five for Friday ~ August 18, 2017 ~ Link Up

The day I have been dreading for weeks, months, years has arrived... I am little later posting today as this was the day I took my youngest daughter to college... This is not a day I have waited for with great excitement and anticipation, instead this is the day I have dreaded a bit. It never really occurred to me when I became a mother that all too soon I would be sending them off into the world, that in reality I only had this small moment in time that they would be under my wings. Now they spread their own wings and learn to fly...

18 years have come and gone...

These past couple of weeks have been especially emotional for me. My girls and I are so very close, for many many years it was just the three of us. I have shared a little of our journey before particularly in this post and this one

My highs this week are also a bit different as I have spent a bit more time reflecting on the past.

1. I am so happy that I was able to raise two amazing daughters getting to this point and looking back truly amazes me. I am blessed beyond measure and I would have never dreamt of a life better than this! These girls really are amazing. I told Tess last night that if they hadn't been so wonderful maybe this transition would be easier for me lol!

2.  I am so so proud of Madie and Tess! My daughters are the first in a long long lineage to graduate high school and go straight to a four year university. I grew up visiting my great grandmother who lived in a two room wooded shack on blocks with no running water and an out house. My grandmother, her daughter, did not graduate high school and instead joined the work force to provide for her young family. My dad did graduate high school and joined the Navy and I, as a young mother, also went straight to work to make ends meet and worked my way to a 4 year degree over the course of about ten years. I am so proud of these girls and so proud of my hard working family whose desire to change our family tree led to our lives today.These girls are making my dreams and the dreams of my family come true!

3. I am so proud that for the most part I did this parenting thing on my own. The road was rough and wonderful all at the same time. It was not easy but it was amazing.

4. While I was a single mom for the larger part of their lives I have been so blessed with this amazing village. The saying it takes a village is an understatement. Thinking back and reflecting on all the people that have loved and supported us along our journey is humbling. Of course there was my family who were my steadfast support, my mom who did so much running here and there for me for the girls when I couldn't. I have been blessed with amazing friends who have supported and encouraged me. I found this amazing church family who love my family as their own and a wonderful work family where I was encouraged to grow and found great support and encouragement as well. The list goes on and on.

I could honestly write a book! Our story of overcoming the odds has been remarkable.

5. One of the greatest gifts the girls and I were ever given was my husband. This man came into our lives eight years ago and decided to take on the world with us forever in 2012 when he proposed! He is an amazing man, a wonderful husband and an incredible father. He has shown the three of us what a husband and father should be and has demonstrated to my girls the qualities in which to look for to find and healthy, happy and loving relationship. He does more for us than we deserve. I have never known a love like this!

I am sure sometimes he thinks "what have I gotten myself into" but he loves us so much none the less.

How has your week been? Link up and share below:

Friday, August 11, 2017

High Five for Friday ~ August 11, 2017 ~ Link Up

Happy Friday!! This week has been another busy week! 

We have basically felt like we have been living in a storage facility for about the last month! Boxes galore are everywhere! We have move ins for both girls this coming week. 

Madie will move into her new apartment on Sunday so we will load up and head 2 hours east to deliver her belongings.

Tess will move into her dorm room the follow Friday so we will pack up and head north! By the looks of it you'd think Tess is moving in to the Biltmore House. Where all this stuff will go in her tiny dorm I do not know....

Madie is on the third floor at her new place and Tess on the eighth... These will be my "cross training" days. Lifting and stair climbing lol!

The highlights of this past week for me have been:

1. I had an amazing 6 mile run with great friends on the greenway! Lately and through the summer I have been only running intervals but I have been working on base and trying to build back some endurance! I ran side by side with a super encouraging friend and we rocked 6 miles non stop at an easy conversational pace! I am feeling great and am already almost half way to a half!

2. I had a fun girls night out with my service league facilitating a fund raiser for our Prom Project! The Prom Project provides beautiful prom dresses to any young lady in our community for free! Prom is such a fun and special time in a young girls life and taking the stress and hassle of buying a costly dress out of the equation she can enjoy a her lovely evening!

3. Took a peek into our backyard wild life. These are my favorite moments to see sweet deer and raccoon seeming to have a late night chat <3

4. Got in several great runs with great friends this week! The mornings are getting cooler and less humid and I am LOVING it!!

5. I got signed up for both the Detroit American Home Fitness 5K for the day before the half and for the Isabella Santos Foundation 10K for Kids Cancer this week!

How was your week? Link up and share you favorite blog post from the week:

Friday, August 4, 2017

High Five for Friday ~ August 4, 2017 ~ Link Up

Woot Woot, it is the weekend!!! Happy Friday Friends! I hope you have had a wonderful week! Here is what I have been up to this week:

1. We moved Madie out of her Apartment and into her car for two weeks. I am sort of kidding.... We actually moved her things home, she will move into her next apartment on 8/13, but she did stay with friends a few nights before coming home Wednesday. She will head back to friends next week and then we move her in to the new place next weekend. I am so happy to have her home! I have both my little birds in the nest for a few days and my heart is so full!!

2. I had a great run with one of my runner girls last Saturday. We talked about our upcoming training and set our goals for our next big race!


3. I actually had several great runs this week! I have kicked off conditioning for my training plan. I have done a lot of sort of running and more like walking this summer so I am now working to build my self back up to consistent running so that I am ready to train for all these races!!

4. I had a much anticipated hair appointment this week. That is like the BEST appointment to have! This time I had pushed it back a week or so and I was in much need of this appointment. A girls hair appointment is like a massage and therapy rolled into one!

5. Last Saturday facebook reminded me that my hubby I became facebook friends 8 years ago! Facebook friendship 8 years ago led to 9pm Facebook chats which led to a first date which led to happily ever after ❤️ Best Friend Request Ever ❤️

What have you been up to this week? Share your highlights below:

Monday, July 31, 2017

The Mystery of the Top Line Collar

I have been pretty accepting of this issue with my top line collar for years! I have simply thought well, it is what it is. Some things just are and what is the sense is questioning what is.


What is a top line collar you ask? The top line collar is the ridge of your running shoe to surrounds your ankle. 

New Balance has this great Shoe Anatomy Image to identify what it is I am talking about.

Truth be told until Saturday I had no idea what this part of my shoe was called. (I totally googled it.) Calling this the “ankle part of the shoe” or the “ring around the ankle” or better yet the “sometimes to tight, sometimes to loose part that your foot goes in first” just seemed wrong so I learned this part of the shoe is the top line collar. (Now I know #lifetimelearner)

I have an “in” with Brooks now after becoming an “Endorsed Athlete” so I decided it was high time to do some discovery on this little mystery of mine. 

My issue is that within a matter of weeks of running in a new pair of Brooks Ghost I begin to notice wear on this top line collar and within no time they look like they have been chewed by a dog.

(These didn't get worn very much at all)

It really does not affect my feet or ankles at all, I have no visible signs of rubbing anywhere. 

I do not think I supinate when I run and I really really do not think I am kicking myself when I run either. 

(These I just got last July and have not worn them an entire year as for a while I had switched to Nikes)

It really is a mystery. 

It’s not like the problem is a real problem… Does that make sense? It doesn’t physically bother me at all. It causes me no pain, I have no rubbing or blisters, it’s just unfortunate. I love running in Brooks so much that I have just accepted that it is what it is. 

I wish it weren’t, my flat runner pre race photos would be much cuter without chewed looking shoes lol!! 

I reached out to Brooks to see what they think. 

While I am waiting to hear back from Brooks (so there will likely be a Mystery Part 2 post) I reached out to the Run Like A Girl Community that I am in and posed the same question. 

I got soooo many responses. It appears to be an issue with many many others too! 


I also received some comments that are making me think maybe I do have a gait issue..

“Have someone video you in slow motion on the treadmill (from behind and front). It will allow you to see what possibly is happening. It could be a medial whip and your one sneaker maybe brushing your other sneaker caused by a muscle imbalance.” “ You would be surprised what video picks up  😀 you could also be pronating and you medial malleolus can be rubbing.”

“ I was doing this to all of my shoes (I also wear Brooks...Glycerin, Ghost, Launch)... I was literally kicking that part of my shoe, along with my ankle. I ended up experiencing severe IT Band syndrome and after rehab and strengthening for that, it has totally stopped!”

“You are brushing it with the opposite foot. Get that gait in check with some squats and lunges and you will most likely remedy the problem.”

Ohhhh I was totally called out lol!! But this is a great point, I am for sure going to work on squats and lunges, maybe it will do the trick!! 

Stay tuned! I will let you know what Brooks says in the sequel to "The Mystery of the Top Line Collar".

Have you had similar issues?

Friday, July 28, 2017

High Five for Friday ~ July 28, 2016

TGIF!! Happy Friday Friends! I am feeling the summer wrapping up and we are currently kicking off our fall plans. Girls Move Outs/Ins, Race Planing, you name it!

It has been a busy, full and fun week. Here are my high fives:

1. We celebrated Tess's 18th Birthday all weekend! She turned 18 last Friday and we spent the day in Asheville on of our favorite cities! Saturday she had friends over and it was a fun weekend!

2. I had a wonderful long walk and talk with dear runner friends this weekend. Sometimes taking time to really enjoy each others company and engage in deep meaningful conversation trumps the long run!

3. I was on the Runner Girls Podcast!!!! I shared this podcast with you a year ago when I highlighted them as one of my top ten podcast's and this year I got to join them for an episode! It was so much fun. Have a listen to Season 6, Episode 3 and be sure to subscribe to the show!

4. I had a fun girls night out with three of my Juice Plus Ladies at Treat, a local favorite! It was so good to catch up, the summer has been busy for all of us!

5. I announced this week the start of my 2017 Run For God Couch to 5K Class. I am so excited to be leading this class again this year!

What was good about your week?? Share it with me!!

Monday, July 24, 2017

My first pass at a Marathon Training Plan

I am still pretty early in my planning but I am a true planner. I like forecasting and looking ahead. It helps me know what I need to be doing now so that when the time comes to really get serious I am ready. 

Because I have races currently on my schedule throughout the rest of the year and one of those being a half marathon I have gone ahead and drafted a schedule which incorporates those runs and builds into my marathon training plan. 

I am 100% certain that this will be a living document and be adjusted as I get into this further. I talked with some pretty awesome Runner Girls this week who are also marathon training and I am already looking at making some adjustments to this to include some speed work, hill work, etc. I will need to have it set out on my scheduled to ensure that I get it done! As I go I will share my journey and the changes and modifications I make along the way!

I love Hal Higdon and the Hal Higdon Training plans. They, in general, work well with my schedule and I feel good throughout my training. I have taken the Hal Higdon Novice 2 Plan and modified it to fit with my schedule. Really I mainly simplified the week day training and this will be the section that I will tweak as I figure out what works best for me. I will add in pace work, speed work, hill work, etc. The weekend schedule will for the most part remain as is for logging the miles and I added in one day of just walking. My plan also is a 24 week plan versus and 18 week plan and that is only because I wanted to include my training plan for my upcoming half marathon.

WeekMonday TuesdayWednesdayThursdayFridaySaturdaySunday
121-Aug3 Mile Walk4 mile run4 mile run4 mile runRestKirkwood 5KCross Train (Hike/Bike/Swim)
228-Aug3 Mile Walk4 mile run4 mile run4 mile runRest7Cross Train (Hike/Bike/Swim)
34-Sep3 Mile Walk4 mile run4 mile run4 mile runRestRestAVL Off Road 10K
411-Sep3 Mile Walk4 mile run4 mile run4 mile runRest9Cross Train (Hike/Bike/Swim)
518-Sep3 Mile Walk4 mile run4 mile run4 mile runRest10Cross Train (Hike/Bike/Swim)
625-Sep3 Mile Walk4 mile run4 mile run4 mile runRest11Cross Train (Hike/Bike/Swim)
72-Oct3 Mile Walk4 mile run4 mile run4 mile runRest12Cross Train (Hike/Bike/Swim)
89-Oct3 Mile Walk4 mile run4 mile run4 mile runRestRestDetroit International Half
916-Oct3 Mile Walk4 mile run4 mile run4 mile runRest6Cross Train (Hike/Bike/Swim)
1023-Oct3 Mile Walk4 mile run4 mile run4 mile runRest7Cross Train (Hike/Bike/Swim)
1130-Oct3 Mile Walk4 mile run4 mile run4 mile runRestSouth of the Mountain Trail Run, Bostic, NC8 Miles
126-Nov3 Mile Walk4 mile run4 mile run4 mile runRest9Cross Train (Hike/Bike/Swim)
1313-Nov3 Mile Walk4 mile run4 mile run4 mile runRest10Cross Train (Hike/Bike/Swim)
1420-Nov3 Mile Walk4 mile run4 mile run4 mile runRest7Cross Train (Hike/Bike/Swim)
1527-Nov3 Mile Walk4 mile run4 mile run4 mile runRest9Cross Train (Hike/Bike/Swim)
164-Dec3 Mile Walk4 mile run4 mile run4 mile runRest11Cross Train (Hike/Bike/Swim)
1711-Dec3 Mile Walk4 mile run4 mile run4 mile runRest12Cross Train (Hike/Bike/Swim)
1818-Dec3 Mile Walk4 mile run4 mile run4 mile runRest9Cross Train (Hike/Bike/Swim)
1925-Dec3 Mile Walk4 mile run4 mile run4 mile runRest14Cross Train (Hike/Bike/Swim)
201-Jan3 Mile Walk4 mile run4 mile run4 mile runRest15Cross Train (Hike/Bike/Swim)
218-Jan3 Mile Walk4 mile run4 mile run4 mile runRestRestHalf Marathon
2215-Jan3 Mile Walk4 mile run4 mile run4 mile runRest17Cross Train (Hike/Bike/Swim)
2322-Jan3 Mile Walk4 mile run4 mile run4 mile runRest18Cross Train (Hike/Bike/Swim)
2429-Jan3 Mile Walk4 mile run4 mile run4 mile runRest13Cross Train (Hike/Bike/Swim)
255-Feb3 Mile Walk4 mile run4 mile run4 mile runRest19Cross Train (Hike/Bike/Swim)
2612-Feb3 Mile Walk4 mile run4 mile run4 mile runRest12Cross Train (Hike/Bike/Swim)
2719-Feb3 Mile Walk4 mile run4 mile run4 mile runRest20Cross Train (Hike/Bike/Swim)
2826-Feb3 Mile Walk4 mile run4 mile run4 mile runRest12Cross Train (Hike/Bike/Swim)
295-Mar3 Mile Walk4 mile run4 mile run4 mile runRest8Cross Train (Hike/Bike/Swim)
3012-Mar3 Mile Walk3 mile run3 mile run3 mile runRest2Asheville Marathon

I am all in, I am excited about it, I am nervous about and I am going to do this!

“Even when you have gone as far as you can, and everything hurts, and you are staring at the specter of self-doubt, you can find a bit more strength deep inside you, if you look closely enough.” 
~ Hal Higdon

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