5 Thoughts Going into Grandmas Marathon Week

We are five days away from Grandmas Marathon 2017. Runners are in the final stretch of their training, mental preparation, race day scheduling, and allowing the excitement and the nerves to begin to build more and more as we head down the week. I am no different. Here are my thoughts going into the marathon week:

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Sprint training on a closed road.

Thought One: Unable to gauge training. The reason I say that is because I have been in training mode since December, and I ran the Illinois Marathon back in April. My training miles are good, my speed seems like it is exactly where it needs to be, but mentally when I look at my spreadsheet I am not necessarily seeing a trend.

Thought Two: Excitement for running Grandmas Marathon. I am getting pretty amped up about this race. I know I have to get over some of the mental hurdles, and one physical, this week but I am getting more and more excited by the day.

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Feeling after a morning 7 miler.

Thought Three: Speaking of physical hurdles, I got a small groin issue. Last week I pulled my groin while running. I was stepping onto a curb and got distracted and had a weird stride. I don’t think it is anything major, but I did have some issues running the past few days. Hopefully my continuous stretching and icing will have already healed it.

Thought Four: Are my expectations reasonable? Last November, I ran a marathon in over 5 hours. The day after my November marathon I decided that I am going to run a marathon in 2017 under 4 hours. That would be a PR of 45min. I ran IL Marathon in 4:16:23 back in April. Are my expectations for Grandmas Marathon too high? I feel like they are not but there are doubts.

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Running in the evening means Brilliant Reflective on everything.

Thought Five: Let’s get it done! This week I want to focus on forgetting the first four thoughts and just saying, “Let’s Go! I have put a ton of training into this and now is the time to show up and get it done.” My though through the race will be, “Keep The Run On”.

I am ready to go out there and make this race a great one! There is nothing better than the feeling that a runner gets, at any level of competition, before and after finishing a race. There are no words and you cannot describe it. You must feel it for yourself.

KEEP THE RUN ON

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Last Stretch of Winter Training

We can only hope that the groundhog was wrong and we only have a little bit more of winter. Regardless of what that little fur ball saw, runners need to push through the last of the cold winter weather.

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Minneapolis Cedar Lake Trail

I am doing so with a combination of running, cross training, and weight lifting, but the way that I am going to get through the last bit of winter is by splitting my time outside and indoor training.

I love to run outside. Unlike others, I think it is a lot easier for me to run outside than on a treadmill. I like to be able to change-up the route and be able to enjoy the lakes, city, river and other runners around the Minneapolis area. This winter, I did most of my running on the treadmill. About 25% of my training was outside. This is a combination of it’s too damn cold in Minnesota and it’s too damn cold in Minnesota. Whenever I did whether the weather and head outdoors, I did not leave the apartment without my Buff for my face, my warm running clothing, and my Brilliant Reflective (for night-time running).

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Minneapolis Loring Park

Now that it is getting a little warmer out, as in it’s above 20 degrees, I am starting to run outside more. There is a transition that has to happen. It is not good for your muscles and joints to dive into the deep end of running on pavement after splashing around on the treadmill the past two months. Running on the treadmill is different from running on pavement. The treadmill is more forgiving on your legs, on the treadmill you are keeping up with the tread rather than propelling yourself forward like on the road, and on the treadmill you do not have the outdoor elements such as weather.

I am starting my outdoor running slowly. To begin, I will be running my easy midweek runs outside while doing the harder workouts indoors. As weather becomes better, I will add more workouts to the outdoor routine. I am also going to try to do some trail running to ease into the hardness of pavement. This way I am not taking a huge leap.

Here are three tips that I have for transition from Treadmill to Pavement:

  1. Take it slow – don’t move your whole training schedule to the road all at once
  2. Take is easy – remember that the treadmill doesn’t have the elements, so adjust to the cold, ice and wind
  3. Take it to the dirt – throw in some trail runs to ease on to the toughness of pavement

Keep The Run On

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For more tips check out: http://www.runnersworld.com/ask-coach-jenny/how-to-transition-from-the-treadmill-to-the-roads ; http://www.popsugar.com/fitness/How-Transition-From-Treadmill-Road-2921548

Five Tips to Winter Training

Being from the frozen tundra of the upper Midwest, a large chunk of my training is in cold conditions. I have gained some experience training in the cold and have some tips for a successful winter training season. To be exact I have five tips for a successful winter training season.

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If you live in a warm climate, I am jealous and there are only two tips for you: stay there and go run.

Don’t Fall Into The Holiday Trap: with Thanksgiving over, and the countdown to December holidays in full swing, people use this time of year as an excuse for omitting their training until after January 1st. Don’t do that. By starting your training early and powering through the holiday season, you will be able to build up some power and stamina.

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Equip Yourself to Avoid Laziness: if you are training in a cold climate you have to be sure that you have all the needed clothing and equipment to be able to go out on your runs at any temperature. By having things like running jackets and warm pants, Buff hats, mittens and wool socks you will be able to whether any weather and avoid making the “It’s too cold” excuses.

Have A Back-up Plan: sometimes there are situations that are out of your hands and an outdoor workout is not an option. Always have a backup workout that can be done indoors. Whether its inclined intervals on the treadmill or cross-training with weights, you should be able to always have a good workout.

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Be Seen at Night: this kind of goes hand-in-hand with equipping yourself for the weather but this is for the dark. During this time of year, you must be seen since it is dark at 5pm. I suggest getting the following to make sure you are visible: Headlamp, Reflective Buff, and Brilliant Reflective Safety Strips. The headlamp will help with seeing where you are running. The Buff will keep you warm. The Brilliant Reflective safety strips can be placed on all your running clothing and gear and you will be seen as a human rather than a cone.

Check Your Self: it is easy to fall into bad habits during this time of year. Anything from drinking too much hot apple cider (with a little extra somethin somethin) to eating too many holiday cookies will slow down your training. Make sure to find balance between the things you eat and drink.

So, there you go. It is as simple as waking up with a hangover January first. To find success this winter season, start training now, get the needed equipment (holiday gift list?), and have a workout and nutrition plan.

Let me know if you have your own tricks when it comes to winter training.

Keep the run on!

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