Boston · Running · Uncategorized

Week 1 Recap: The Hills Are Alive

Week one of marathon training is officially in the books.  Even though the mileage was less than I’ve been used to running throughout the fall season, there were still some lessons learned and adjustments made along the way.  Some days, there just will not be anything noteworthy, so don’t mind if I skip past a day or two!

But First — A Fundraising Update

It’s hard to believe, but I’m almost at 50% of my goal!  As of today, I’ve raised $3,692.  I’m so incredibly thankful for the support that I’ve received so far — but we aren’t there yet! You can get involved in a few different ways:

  • Sign up to attend my Paint Nite at the Slumbrew American Fresh Beer Garden on Tuesday, January 10!  Enjoy a night out as the post-holiday blues are setting in, have some delicious beer, hang out with some cool people, and paint an adorable picture of two owls hanging out in a tree.  Click here to sign up— I only have 35 spots (30 are left at publishing time), so reserve your easel today.  Feel free to invite friends/co-workers/family for a fun night out!
  • Attend my big fundraising bash at the Irish American in Malden on February 17 from 7 – 11 PM.  There will be raffles, a DJ, food, and a cash bar.  Suggested donation of $26.20 to come party!
  • Consider donating a raffle item for the fundraising party.  Are you a local or small business owner?  Raffles can be a great way to get your product/services out to a new audience!  Season ticket holder or access to cool items/memorabilia?  Let me know by commenting below or shooting me an email!
  • Check out my fundraising page on Crowdrise to make a cash donation.  Every little bit helps, and no amount is too small!  Many companies offer matching donations, which can make your dollar go even farther — click here to donate or read more about my fundraising story.

Day 1 (Monday, 12/5) 3 miles & yoga

I actually had the day off from work because we hosted our annual Christmas party the day before, so it was nice to start off training stress-free and getting my run in when I felt like it as opposed to having to wake up and squeeze it in before work.  I took off for one of my 3-mile loops from my house…if you’re reading this and are familiar with where I live, you know that I basically live on a mountain. There are hills galore, so no matter what I end up doing or what route I take, I’m running downhill to start and uphill to finish.  It sucks, but it’s probably a good thing for my endurance as I am getting used to battling uphill on less than fresh legs.

Even though it was only 3 miles, it was a tough 3 miles.  Because I had some knee pain due to something going on with my IT Band/hip area, this was my first run since the Gobble Gobble Gobble 4-miler on Thanksgiving.  I went into the run just looking to get the miles in and not worrying about pace.  I was ok until about 2.75 miles — then I felt that twinge in my knee and thought “oh no…the rest didn’t help!”.  I walked the last 1/4 mile home and told myself if I felt the pain on Wednesday’s run, I’d call my doctor.  Because of the twinge, I skipped out on my optional yoga class and rested instead.

Day 3 (Wednesday, 12/7), 3 miles, yoga, Burn (HAHAHAHA)

Wednesday has always been a double session day for me.  I hit a yoga class in the morning, and then a boot-camp style class at 5:30.  Wednesdays will be a relatively low mileage day for me for a few months, so I thought that I might be able to still swing both of those in addition to the 3 miles.  HA!

Unfortunately I had to skip my yoga class due to a work conflict (training and fundraising for the marathon actually ISN’T my full time job…crazy, right?!).  That’s two missed yoga classes this week…I must get better at this going forward, as flexibility/strength/core work is going to be an important part of my training.

I had 3 miles on the schedule, so set out for the same loop I had done on Monday.  I was pleasantly surprised as the run was much easier, and I didn’t feel any knee pain (hooray!).  After a week and a half off from running to rest my knee, I guess I should have expected the first run to be a bit difficult.  My time was almost 3 minutes faster, I had no knee pain, and felt good the whole run.  Back in business!

I was deciding between doing a yoga video at home since I had missed my class earlier, or going to my boot camp type class.  Ultimately I decided on the boot camp class since I knew my time was limited to get to that until the mileage picked up later in training.  The teacher, Sarah, has become a good friend and big source of support, so I had sent her my training plan to look over right before class.  She thought that I might be pushing it trying to get to class on days that I run — I figured I would be fine until I got up to 4 and 5 mile days.  Oh man was she right and I was wrong.  The class is really hard anyways, but I couldn’t keep up to save my life.  For the first time in my life, I left a class early; my legs were tired and heavy.  I left right before the last group of exercises started…including the single leg mountain climbers I had seen on Instagram and sent to Sarah.  You’re welcome, guys!

Day 6 (Saturday, 12/10) 5 miles

This was the biggie.  My first group long run.  I set my alarm for 6:30 AM to get out to Newton for 8:00 AM where I would meet our coaches and some of the other people in the running group.  I was reeeeeally nervous.  Not so much about the run (5 miles was on the schedule…a totally doable number), but more about not being able to keep up, being late, or not being able to find parking, etc.  I’m a nervous/anxious person by nature, so I was expecting some first day of school butterflies.

It was so fun.  The coaches were nice, the other runners were nice, and there were SO MANY PEOPLE out on the course.  Running is usually such a solo activity, but being out on the course for the first time and seeing all of the other people out there working towards the same thing just made you feel like you were part of something bigger than yourself.


The Week One Training Crew

We met at a small park diagonally across from the Heartbreak Hill Running Company, had a quick round of introductions, and set off for a 2.5 mile run down to the firehouse on Comm Ave and back.  If you’ve never run or been in that area, there’s a carriage road that you can use to run without being on Comm Ave itself — it’s pretty great, and the best part is it’s plowed in the winter (hooray!).

You guys…the Newton hills are no joke.  It’s not that they are terribly steep, but they just keep going.  There is no end.  Rolling hills for days.  I’m going to try my best to get out to the course for my long runs as much as possible to get more familiar and comfortable with it.  While it adds a layer of difficulty to already difficult long runs, hopefully it will make race day a bit easier.

Day 7 (Sunday, 12/11) Rest Day just kidding, 3.1 miles at C5k Yulefest!

Typically I will be sandwiching my long runs between rest days, but this week was an exception because one of the most fun races of the year was held on Sunday.  I ran 3.1 miles of merry fun with the Slumbrew Happy Soles, and enjoyed the always epic after party once the race was over.  The run itself was bad.  It was probably one of my worst 5k times to date (I finished somewhere around 36 minutes).  But, as my friend Tina said, I need to learn to cut myself some slack.  I’m training for a marathon, hit the Newton hills for the first time, was out later than I should have been on Saturday night (oooops), and was running on tired legs.  I pushed my performance out of my mind and had fun with my friends and teammates at the after party.


Alexis, Me, and Stacey before the race trying to keep warm

And after party we did!  A member of the Happy Soles made reindeer tutus for anyone that wanted one, and 12 of us ran as Santa’s reindeer.


Trying to make funny faces….or something.  This was towards the end of the party.

I truly love this team, and I’m so glad I found them!


Kelly, Joe (volunteer extraordinaire!), me, Alexis, David, and Tina enjoying the after party!

All in all, I’d say that week one of training was a success.  I learned that I need to prioritize and make time for yoga, and that while my heart wants to keep up my boot camp class, it just isn’t in the cards.  Looking forward to seeing what week two brings!




Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s