Monday, May 27, 2013

4 months.....Family, Boston, training, coaching, smiling!!

Wow, it's been FOREVER since I've written a blog post. Perhaps an 8 month break from any sort of race had something to do with that. Or work, or my insanely busy kids, or just the fact that I lost my desire for awhile:) Happens to the best of us. I read a lot of blogs, I've had less energy to write them these days.

Family updates:

* My oldest daughter Ryan played in the State Hockey Tournament in March which was an amazing experience. She's also played with Advanced 15 Reebok High Performance Hockey this spring which has been a great experience! Wow, some amazing talent here. She joined the track team this year and ran both the 100 and 200 and relays. We celebrated birthday #15 and also signed up for Driver's Ed. She's off to Cancun for an 8 day vacation next week, she's madly in love with a farmer (can one be madly in love at 15?). Three years and my biggest baby heads off to college! Ahh!

*My middle daughter Reese is a 6th grader who is now 1.5 inches taller than her older sister!! She had a great hockey season and was definitely my "most improved" child. She's hoping to fill her summer with 5k road races and babysitting jobs. For a 12 year old, she's doing well! Ran her personal best of 21:10 in May and only going up from here! She's heading to Carrie Tollefson's Cross Country Camp at St. Catherine's in July and is SO very excited about this! Any Minnesotan's familiar with this camp? Would love to hear what you think.

*My sweet little Max is 9 years old. He just finished his hockey season as he played for the Northern Wings team out of Duluth this spring after his regular season. He's now full boar into Cal Ripken baseball which I'm finding out is going to be as busy as hockey!! He LOVES the outdoors and spends most of his free time exploring and "protecting" our yard.

Ryan's confirmation

Personal update:

So much new for me since my last post in February! I'm still very busy with my job and my kids. I made a trip to Boston to spectate the marathon this year and spend time with some very special people in my life! I could write 5 posts about my experience there....My huge car wreck on the way to the airport to fly out, all the quality time spent with good friends, tracking people and spectating the race, my first crack at seeing Shalane and Kara in the flesh, seeing sweet Amanda's smile at mile 19 (which was truly the highlight of the race for me), the bombings and my experience with that, the weekend in general...I'll keep it simple! I stayed with my dear friend Ana Maria out in Arlington. My second trip out here SUCH a comfortable place for me to be!! Starbuck's every morning, runs on the beautiful bike path with no watches.....Lots of very special memories here for me..

Prior to Boston, I had been running, as always, but primarily easy pace and lower mileage. Just coming off an 8 month training break after a big PR marathon for me last October! NO racing and just soaking up the winter concentrating on my work and my kids!! I LOVED and treasured this time but I could feel a desire for a training focus coming back as spring was in the air!! I decided that perhaps I wanted to focus on a HM but was a little unsure of the approach I wanted to take with that.

There are a few connections I've made through blogs and a few people I've followed and been incredibly inspired by. Ana Maria is definitely one of these people. I "met" her through her blog prior to the 2010 Boston Marathon in which we were about the same pace (wish that was the case now-ha!!) and roughly the same age and training for the same race and I was IMMEDIATELY drawn to her work ethic and her matter of fact personality. I've since followed her as she trained through 2 HIM's, virtually trained with her through our own personal marathons, and watched her absolutely shatter her race times in every distance since 2010. Most fascinating to me being the progress she's made with speed and her ability to push herself to new levels there. Mark my WORDS, this woman will TEAR up the masters circuit should she decide this is something she wants. Anyway, I greatly respect her and her training knowledge. She's well researched and demonstrated and her personality type is one that can mesh with mine!! SO THEREFORE, in thinking of how I wanted to proceed with running this year, I found the only logical option was to drink too much wine in Boston and then beg Ana Maria to coach me and make me fast-ha ha! (I will say that I had thought of this 100 times before the actually intoxicated moment but was just easier to beg at that moment-ha!) Well, she said YES and herein started my current journey.

Training update:

I've been training for a HM for 5 weeks so far. I've been pushed pretty close to my limit which is SO good for me. I now sometimes carry an Ana Maria voodoo doll with me on my runs and prick her shins when I'm trying to hold long tempos.....:):) Ahh-I love that I can tell her I swear at her and she doesn't care-ha ha! That being said, I'm making PROGRESS and I can feel it!!! I LOVE the fact that I am only getting my workouts one week at a time and I LOVE that I can just trust and not think beyond the week right now. She knows me as a runner and I feel she knows what I can handle and she's been right on.

I'm running 3 key days. I have run a Hudson plan in marathon training before and definitely run some hard weeks but have generally switched to the "Jenn" plan part way through which means lots of miles but not so much quality.....Now, I'm definitely focusing more on quality. I'm running around 60 miles/week sometimes a little less.

I ran 6X1 mile at 6:31 pace this morning on 1 minute rest. This was a treadmill workout so perhaps a little different than the road (on 1.5% incline) but I've never run 6X1 miles at this pace in training ever! Booyahh. Sucked ASS while I was running it but dang, I feel good now-ha!

I've run 4 very quality tempos all outside the last 5 weeks. 6 miles@6:57, 6 miles@6:55, 7 miles@6:58 and 3X5K on 2 minute rest at 6:57 average-THIS ONE SO HARD FOR ME. I've had to dig deeper than EVER to make it through some of these runs. I've had it "in there" to run these before I think but never been able to consistently mentally push myself here. I'm finding the accountability to be SO AWESOME.

I am BEYOND grateful for this experience. Whatever happens here, there is absolutely NO DOUBT in my mind that this was the right thing for me to do right now. Amidst the shin pricking and the swearing, I've enjoyed myself immensely and I feel so blessed here!! Thank you AM:)

So, thereyahaveit:) Finally hints of summer in Minnesota and oh so ready for it!!! Bring on the next few weeks of this training and a summer of running with my hubby as he marathon trains for a BQ for 2014, and runs with my dad as he marathon trains for a BQ for 2015, and runs with my sister as we will BOTH run in Boston 2014, and runs with my daughter as I only have a couple of years left before she's too fast for me!!!! Hello family BBQ's, evening bonfires, family vacations, the lake with good friends, sister time, races, girl trips, new work adventures, yardwork!! Obviously, I'm high on endorphins from my morning run-ha! Happy long weekend all!


Amanda@runninghood said...

That's it! I'm coming to visit YOU soon ..In MN...I want to get a taste of this MN summer you speak of! :) sounds awesome. And of course, it would be awesome with you there. Loved reading this as always. I rarely get on my blog much lately but I did just now and there was a Jenn post! Woo hoo. A farmer huh? Haven't heard this love story yet..we need to catch up soon. :)
Most of this I already know but it is wonderful to read it again and see your happiness and energy come through your words. I've never seen you this strong and confident and just overall NAILING LIFE! Contagious energy Jenn...Love it. Thank you for you. Glad you had another good run this morning. And Yes, no matter what happens on your race days, this really does seem like such a great decision to have AM as your coach. You two make an incredible team.

Love you! Excited to see you soon. Oh, and mile 19...the reason for my big smile was in seeing three people I love dearly!

Ana-Maria RunTriLive said...

Woot, woot, look who posted! So many things are going so awesome for you and your family...and many more to come. Love writing plans for your because you have the speed inside of you, you have a strong work ethic and you are stubborn (ha!). Yes, feel free to swear at me anytime:) Truly a special thing here for me, and love seeing you run these strong paces and getting stronger and stronger.
Ryan in love with a farmer....I bet a hot one! I need details!!!
And yes, would love to visit you in MN, on your turf. It will have to be during the summer, LOL!

Raina said...

Your kids are growing up so fast! I can't wait to see what kind of PR Reese will end up with after this camp. What an opportunity!
Max sounds like he's ready for summer. I saw a sample of his writing recently- he has some gifts! I hope my boys begin to like writing. :)
Ryan and a farmer- YES you can be madly in love at 15, just have to wait a while though. Is she learning to drive tractor?

OK ..nice that you shared about your new coach so I can finally say publicly that AM is going to make an excellent mental and physical partner for you- great combo. Voodoo doll might be a good idea, but i can imagine the training talks afterwards :)

Holy speedwork! That was quite the 6x1600 repeat!! I bet you relished each of those 1min rests .. I believe there is a 10k PR in there waiting for a bib!

So good to read your post!! Happy life is going so well for you.

Britt @ Chicago Runner Girl said...

Yes, one can be madly in love at 15 and marry that same man years later. All of my husbands and my own family and friends thought we were mad, but here we are 29 years old and still hanging on.

Glad you're excited about training! Love to hear that from you! Did I miss what race you're training for? A full? A half?

Nicole Wagner Makeup said...

so good to hear from you!!!!!
I'm excited to see what you do lady! will be checking back for updates! xxx

TX Runner Mom said...

So glad you posted an update! Happy to hear that you and your family are all doing well!

lindsay said...

I'm behind... due to life and Google Reader going away (using Feedly now, which doesn't like to let me comment via my phone!) I know, my life is so tough...

Anyway, always good to see a check in from you, my favorite rambler! :) Glad everyone is doing well and the running is still going strong!

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