Do Turkeys Really Trot?

7 Dec

For the second year in a row, I signed up the family for the Sugar Land Surgical Hospital Turkey Trot.  My husband wondered whether it might more aptly be called the “Sugar Land Turkey Run for Your Life” because, let’s face it, if someone’s trying to kill you and eat you, you’re probably not going to be moving at a leisurely trot.

But I digress.

The race is a nice, active way to start Thanksgiving Day alongside friends and neighbors from our community.  There are only about 1500 participants, so it really does feel like a community event.

The day began with a 1-mile race for the kids.  Peter, my 9-year-old, was excited for the race and had a goal to finish in less than 11:40.  It’s funny — Peter is the decidedly less athletic child, but he has really been inspired by Hubby and me and our decision to lead a more active lifestyle.  After Hubby completed his first sprint triathlon last summer, Peter decided to train for a kids’ triathlon.  He completed his event in August and has joined Marathon Kids at school this year.  He was excited for the Turkey Trot and comfortable running the race on his own.

Jacob, my 7-year-old, didn’t have a stated goal.  But probably the single overarching goal in his young life has been to beat his brother.  At anything.  Jacob, though he enjoys sports, was grumpy that I had decided to sign him up for this race.  He was a little less confident in his distance-running abilities and requested that Daddy accompany him.

After the National Anthem was played, the gun went off and so did the kids.  My father-in-law and I waited patiently at the finish line to cheer them on.  I kept looking for Peter’s head of shiny black hair to come into view.  Much to my surprise, the first familiar sight I saw was Jacob, with Daddy running just behind him encouraging him to sprint for the finish!  Peter followed a few seconds later, with a finish time of 10:52.  What a day — Jacob beat his brother AND Peter beat his goal time.  Everybody wins!

About 20 minutes later, it was time for Hubby and me to line up for the 5-miler.  It was a warm, humid, sunny day, which wasn’t ideal for running.  Thankfully, the course winds through a stately older neighborhood with lots of mature trees to provide shade.  My finish time last year was around 59 minutes, so my only real goal was to try to beat that time.  Additionally, I knew we had a 12-mile run scheduled two days later, so I was trying my hardest to treat this as a training run instead of a race.

Ultimately, I finished in 51:59, even though I really did not push myself.  Again, mission accomplished!  I stayed to cheer on some of my friends, then we headed home to begin the cooking frenzy for Thanksgiving.

I love that we have started this tradition of participating in the Turkey Trot on Thanksgiving.  It gets the day off to a good start and sure helps ease the guilt over that second helping of mashed potatoes!

Schedule — Week of 12/6 and Weekly Recap

6 Dec

My schedule for this week is:

Monday: 20 minutes easy

Tuesday: 30 minute tempo run

Wednesday: Rest

Thursday: 30 minute tempo run

Friday:  Rest

Saturday:  Rest

Sunday:  Sugar Land 30K

And here’s how I fared last week:

Monday:  40 minutes easy [legs felt like concrete, but slogged through 40 minutes]

Tuesday: 6×1 min./2 min. [still very tired, so opted out of speedwork this week]

Wednesday: 20 minutes easy [legs feeling better, so this short run went well]

Thursday: 30 minute tempo run [missed due to a busy schedule]

Friday:  Rest [got in my 30 minute tempo run today]

Saturday:  14 miles [relatively warm for December 4th, which made it a bit more difficult than recent long runs.  Forgot my sunglasses, which made the last 1.5 miles difficult because they were directly into the sun.  Learning how to use Hammer Nutrition Perpetuem Solids, which really seem to help my energy levels more than just Gu alone.]

Schedule — Week of 11/29 and Weekly Recap

28 Nov

My schedule for this week looks like this:

Monday:  40 minutes easy

Tuesday: 6×1 min./2 min.

Wednesday: 20 minutes easy

Thursday: 30 minute tempo run

Friday:  Rest

Saturday:  14 miles

And here’s how I did last week:

Monday 11/22:  Rest [mission accomplished]

Tuesday 11/23:  Speedwork 2×1600/4 minute recovery  [I didn’t feel like going to the track for speedwork, so I just did a 30 minute run.  It was muggy and hot, so I was glad I didn’t opt for speedwork.  I went just shy of 3 miles in 29 minutes]

Wednesday 11/24:  20 min. easy [Pre-Thanksgiving baking and meal prep got in the way and I didn’t run today]

Thursday:  Sugar Land Turkey Trot (5 mi.)  [Despite the very warm and sunny conditions and some stomach cramping, I finished the 5 miler in 52 minutes, which was a 7 minute improvement over my time last year]

Friday:  Off  [Does Black Friday shopping count?]

Saturday: 16 miles — that should work off all the Thanksgiving turkey!  [We used Map My Run to find a route that was supposed to be 16.56 miles.  According to David’s GPS, it actually turned out to be 18.6 miles.  UGH!  It was a tough run, but we survived.]

Schedule Week of 11/22

21 Nov

Monday 11/22:  Rest

Tuesday 11/23:  Speedwork 2×1600/4 minute recovery

Wednesday 11/24:  20 min. easy

Thursday:  Sugar Land Turkey Trot (5 mi.)

Friday:  Off

Saturday: 16 miles — that should work off all the Thanksgiving turkey!

On my own…

20 Nov

I am nervous this time.  It’s more than the occasional, “What was I thinking when I signed up for that marathon?” jitters.  This will be my 3rd marathon, but the first time I have trained for a long-distance event entirely on my own.  With our first two marathons in the early 2000s, we trained with Houston Fit.  I just completed a half-marathon with Team in Training.

But now, I’m on my own.  It’s entirely up to me to set the training schedule.  There’s no one to meet me in the pre-dawn hours for Saturday long runs and certainly no one to map out the route.  It’s just me.

Thank goodness for Map My Run!  It at least gives me a starting place to design a route for myself.  I’m going to try to start running with my phone so that the iMapMyRun app can track the distance for me and then I can upload my routes.

This past week was light on training — just an easy 3-mile run on Wednesday morning.  Then I went 11 miles this morning.  I’m glad I headed out early because it warmed up pretty quickly once the sun came out.  I will post my training plan for the upcoming week soon.

Happy Trails!

My online running log

18 Nov

After a 10-year hiatus, I have rekindled my passion for long-distance running.  Over the weekend, I completed the Rock N’ Roll San Antonio Half-Marathon.  It was my first event longer than a 10K since I ran the Disney Marathon in January 2001.

The weather was perfect, and the race had tons of great volunteers and cheering spectators.  I trained for the event with Team in Training and raised over $3,600 to help find a cure for blood cancers.  Talk about rewarding!

Anyway, I decided to start this blog just to document my running and keep me on track as I continue training for various events.  Next up:  the Chevron Houston Marathon on January 30, 2011.

I will also post race reports and event photos here, so stay tuned!