Category: Running + Training

En route to RAGBRAI

By , July 29, 2016 12:50 pm


imageThe week felt so long even though I was really busy at work. It probably felt that way because I was watching the RAGBRAI Facebook page and getting all jacked up and excited about it! I can’t wait to see what Gina thinks of the ride!

Random Thoughts Thursday 104

By , July 28, 2016 6:23 am
  • Hummingbirds have been hanging out by the flowers growing out of the hastas! Exciting! I should put out a legit feeder for them. They’re so fun to watch. Here’s a super awesome photo I took of one (circled in red, in case you can’t find it, ha):


  • We had friends over last weekend and I was excited to use our new lawn furniture and eat lunch outside! Only, all you had to do was step outside to start dripping in sweat. So… we ate inside. Ha. But I am happy we got some outdoor seating. Hopefully we will have some opportunities to use it next month.


  • I finished knitting a bunch of wash cloths. I thought about saving them for housewarming gifts, but decided to mail them to my Grandma to sell at her church’s farmers market booth. The pattern is ZickZack.

160725knittedcloths2 160725knittedcloths1 160725zickzack

  • Shelley helped me pick out needles to start knitting socks! August is going to be busy with house projects, so I hope I can give it a try in September.
  • I’m sad to be missing the Movin’ Shoes Full Moon Run (5K) tonight in Madison with Rachel! We’ve run it the last three years together! But it just doesn’t make sense with my schedule this year. I hope she has a great race!!!

Link to Random Thoughts Thursday 103

Training Week 353

By , July 24, 2016 4:38 pm

Highlight of the Week: Running with Kelly / feeling great on my Friday run.


Monday | July 18, 2016: 5 m run (w/Kelly) + teaching strength class
Loc: to Bobbi’s, Temp: 86°/82°, Time: 49:03, Pace: 9:48 avg, Difficulty: easy/medium, Felt: decent, but like my skin was burning
Strength: resistance bands and mixed mode, Difficulty: easy (mostly observing), Felt: good

Tuesday | July 19, 2016: 10 m ride
Indoor Ride Time: 37:42, Pace: 15.9 mph avg, Difficulty: easy, Felt: good, butt getting used to seat again
Wednesday | July 20, 2016: rest
Thursday | July 21, 2016: 12 m run (incl. 8×1:00) + 10 m ride
Loc: VP to Wadsworth loop, Temp: 74°/77, Time: 2:04:51, Pace: 10:24 avg, Difficulty: easy.medium, Felt: really good
Indoor Ride Time: 38:07, Pace: 15.7 mph avg, Difficulty: easy, Felt: good

Friday | July 22, 2016: teaching strength class + 800 m swim (breaststroke, w/Anne) + 4 m run
Strength: restistance bands & mixed mode, Difficulty: medium, Felt: good, but so tired (sleep)
Loc: Grayslake outdoor pool, Temp (air): 70°/70°, Time: 24:45, Pace: 2:43 min/100m, Difficulty: easy-ish, Felt: better than last week!
Loc: hood, Temp: 79°/82°, Time: 36:31, Pace: 9:07 avg, Difficulty: easy, Felt: really good

Saturday | July 23, 2016: 3 m run
Loc: hood, Temp: 78°/80°, Time: 29:03, Pace: 9:40 avg, Difficulty: easy, Felt: okay, frustrated with a loose dog
Sunday | July 24, 2016: 16 m run
Loc: DPRT, Temp: 72°/75°, Time: 2:51:52, Pace: 10:44 avg, Difficulty: easy, then hard (the sweatier I got), Felt: fine, just drenched


  • We had a heat advisory this week, but I actually felt really good during my runs. Yay! Am I acclimated? (I still finished the runs completely drenched, but you’ll have that.)
  • My bike is in the shop, getting tuned up for RAGBRAI! Yay! The ride is in a few days – on Saturday the 30th!
  • I was on schedule to teach a fitness boxing class this weekend but we canceled it due to low enrollment – so many people are doing other races or on vacation and so on. I am pleased we made it this far in to the summer with people coming to class! I’ll take a break and have the next class in September.
  • During the beginning of my Saturday run a dog jumped on the back of my legs when I was still on my street, headed for the highway. I had no idea where he came from so I ran up and down my street until I figured it out. Scary! I can’t have loose dogs following me on to the highway!
  • Last year, Gina visited in September and we worked out A TON – hill work, a long city run, strength class, a bike ride, a 5K (her PR!) and a 20 miler. She called it Skamp – a hybrid of the first two initials of my last name plus the word camp – which made me laugh. Well, I am excited to say she is coming back for Skamp 2016 in September! YAY! I can’t wait to plan out everything we’ll do! I tend to get really excited when someone who likes to do active things visits. I little over excited (ha, when Kelly was here and I suggested workouts for almost every activity, she jokingly (I think?) said “are you trying to kill me?!”

Thanks to everyone who entered my Eleven Year Blogiversary GIVEAWAY!!! I had said I’d notify the winners here, but I emailed them individually.

Link to Training Week 352

Now, that’s a steal!

By , July 23, 2016 5:38 am


Thank you, ShoeKicker, for notifying me of the deal! I am surprised the shoes were still available when I saw the notification email three and a half hours later. Lucky me!


Even though I have running shoes waiting to be used in storage, I couldn’t pass up $30 a pair – no way! And somehow, I got Amazon Prime savings, so my total before taxes ended up being $26.98 a pair! Score!!! Soooooo many exclamation points! Ha.

Now, for the heat to die down, so I can really ramp up the miles and use those bad boys. Oh wait, we’re just getting started with the super nasty heat here! Oh, summer.

Training Week 352

By , July 18, 2016 7:49 pm

Highlight of the Week: Running with Kelly!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


Monday | July 11, 2016: 10 m ride + teaching strength class
Indoor Ride Time: 38:34, Pace: 15.6 mph avg, Difficulty: easy, Felt: good
Strength: resistance bands and mixed mode, Difficulty: easy, Felt: too hot, off

Tuesday | July 12, 2016: rest
Wednesday | July 13, 2016: 5 m run (incl. 6×400) + 7 m run
Loc: hood, Temp: 82°/82°, Time: 48:59, Pace: 9:47 avg, Difficulty: medium, Felt: okay, JUST SO HOT
Loc: to VP Woods, Temp: 86°/85, Time: 1:12:01, Pace: 10:17 avg, Difficulty: medium, Felt: decent, just hot hot hot

Thursday | July 14, 2016: 4 m run
Loc: hood, Temp: 85°/87°, Time: 39:35, Pace: 9:53 avg, Difficulty: easy/medium, Felt: very appreciative of the 20+ mph winds
Friday | July 15 2016: teaching strength class + 1,000 m swim (breaststroke) + 15 m ride + 6 m run
Strength: resistance bands and mixed mode, Difficulty: easy, Felt:good
Loc: Grayslake outdoor pool, Temp (air): 63°, Time: 28:47, Pace: 2:51 min/100m, Difficulty: medium, Felt: tired arms, pooped!
Indoor Ride Time: 55:54, Pace: 16.1 mph, Difficulty: easy, Felt: good
Loc: hood, Temp: 65°/65°, Time: 55:44, Pace: 9:17, Difficulty: easy, Felt: great, yay cool weather!!!!!!!!!!!!

Saturday | July 16, 2016: 15 m run 
Loc: DPRT, Temp: 56°/66°, Time: 2:36:36, Pace: 10:26 avg, Difficulty: medium then easy then medium, Felt: good, but warmer than I thought I’d get!
Sunday | July 17, 2016: 7 m ride + 3 m run (w/Kelly!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!)
Indoor Ride Time: 27:39, Pace: 15.2 mph avg, Difficulty: easy, Felt: good to shake out the legs!
Loc: Lake Andrea, Temp: 83°/83°, Time: 27:55, Pace: 9:18 avg, Difficulty: easy, Felt: good, hot when not running in to the wind!


  • These bullets are usually in chronological order but I am moving this one to the top – my training partner, Kelly, who I haven’t seen in just over a year was here on Sunday!!!! And she’s here through Tuesday. And we got to run together! And it was amazing!!!! MUCH HAPPINESS!!!!
  • My legs feel so swollen and odd during my runs lately. I can’t tell if it’s from the heat, if I am retaining water, or from them being covered in poison whatever. Whatever it is, I hope it goes away soon (<—I wrote this at the beginning of the week and it seemed better by Sunday, yay!).
  • Gosh, my Friday swim took it out of me! I swam slower than I normally do, but took less breaks and I felt like I was going to sink toward the end, then was all shaky when I got out. Odd!
  • The two days of cool weather we had on Friday and Saturday were such a wonderful reprieve from the hot summer weather. And a good reminder that running is so much easier when it’s cooler. Ha. Although, the sun still got to me on Saturday!
  • I still can’t believe how well that corn remover bandage worked! I haven’t had any issues with it since I used it! Yay!

Link to Training Week 351

New running partner!

By , July 13, 2016 12:03 pm

I have a new running partner! We started running together last week!


His name is Summer.


We were only able to run together twice last week, but crazy thing – I still felt like he was there in spirit!

Ha. Ha ha.

(I’m just joking – any run, no matter the pace, is a good run. BUT I FEEL LIKE I’M MELTING (when I am out running)!!!!!)

Shoe Dog Book Review

By , July 11, 2016 6:23 am

I bought this book on Amazon with my own money, and paid for Steven’s digital copy on iTunes.

Steven and I both took copies of Shoe Dog, a memoir by Nike creator Phil Knight, with us to Alaska to read while on the plane. Book club for two!


The book chapters are set up by year, from 1962 to 1980 – starting with when Knight left home in his early 20s to travel the world, including a trip to Japan to propose his idea to Onitsuka Tiger Shoes to sell them in the US – to the founding of Nike and some of the first issues they faced. The book is full of vivid descriptions of the places Knight visits, the people in his life, and especially, the business obstacles he faced, on his journey toward creating Nike.

I figured I’d like the book because of the running aspect of it, and since it’s a memoir – I really enjoy memoirs. And I figured Steven would like the book for the business aspects. And, yep – those are both the parts we liked best!

I did find myself feeling a bit impatient reading the book – “When is it going to become Nike already?!” The company was called Blue Ribbon Sports while Knight was importing and selling the Japanese shoes – before they had their own shoe made and called Nike. And then, when it got to the Nike part, I wanted more! Ha – I need memoir part II, after 1980.

But overall, I was shocked and enthralled by what I was reading. I didn’t understand the big picture of how Nike came about before reading this. Or know how rocky of a start Blue Ribbon Sports had (which really, is how it is for most businesses – it’s been fun to talk to Steven about the business part of the book and compare it to his business).

I loved reading how passionate Knight was about making sports shoes that performed well, and how he wanted more people to know the joy of running. I did know about Bill Bowerman using his wife’s waffle iron to make shoe soles, but I didn’t realize he was the main innovator, and reading about his and Knight’s relationship is very interesting.

It was strange to read about Nike’s struggle (at first) to get big name athletes to wear their shoes – since that is what A LOT of athletes wear now (shoes AND clothes), and since there has been some controversy about their shoes/clothes at track and field events. Again, it made me want to learn more about how the company grew so much after all the events in the book. There is a bit written in current times, but, I guess it wasn’t enough for me!

I also didn’t realize that the company Knight was selling in the US, Onitsuka Tiger, merged with two other companies in 1977 to form Asics (which is what I wear). Ha. The more you know, right?! Steven suggested I take a photo of the book with running shoes for this blog post, but I don’t own any Nike running shoes (I do have Nike sandals!) and it would be WRONG to put my Asics in a photo with this book (um, since they didn’t have the friendliest end to their business relationship)!

I can see myself reading this again – and I highly recommend it as a quick, interesting read! I’m looking forward to discussing it with Gina when I see her in a few weeks, because she’s read it as well! Book club for three!

Training Week 351

By , July 10, 2016 8:24 pm

Highlight of the Week: Running to Bobbi’s house!


Monday | July 4, 2016: 10.5 m run + 10 m bike + 10 mins strength
Loc: to VP Woods, Temp: 71°/72°, Time: 1:50:28, Pace: 10:31 avg, Difficulty: medium, Felt: warm, better – legs becoming less sore
Indoor Bike Time: 36:24, Pace: 16.5 mph avg, Difficulty: easy, Felt: good, but sweaty!

Tuesday | July 5, 2016: 5.5 m run (incl. 10×1:00) + teaching strength class
Loc: hood, Temp: 78°/79°, Time: 54:05, Pace: 9:50 avg, Difficulty: hard, Felt: hot & heavy
Strength: body bars, Difficulty: easy, Felt: good, sweaty

Wednesday | July 6, 2016: 6 m run
Loc: hood, Temp: 78°/82°, Time: 57:56, Pace: 9:39 avg, Difficulty: medium, Felt: good until the last 1.5 miles then like death, thankful for the breeze!
Thursday | July 7, 2016: rest
Friday | July 8, 2016: teaching strength class + 900 m swim (mostly breaststroke) + 3 m run + 5 m run
Strength: resistance bands and mixed mode, Difficulty: easy, Felt: good
Loc: Grayslake outdoor pool, Temp (air): 64°/68°, Time: 24:59, Pace: 2:31min/100m, Difficulty: easy, Felt: good!
Loc: hood, Temp: 82°/84°, Time: 27:47, Pace: 9:15, Difficulty: easy/medium, Felt: good in the clouds
Loc: to Bobbi’s, Temp: 85°/84°, Time: 47:42, Pace: 9:32, Difficulty: easy, Felt: good, enjoyed the breeze

Saturday | July 9, 2016: 5 m run
Loc: hood, Temp: 69°/72°, Time: 49:46, Pace: 9:57 avg, Difficulty: easy, Felt: okay, just so tired (sleepy)
Sunday | July 10, 2016: 7.25 m ride + teaching fitness boxing + 5 m run
Indoor Bike Time: 27:06, Pace: 16.1 mph avg, Difficulty: easy, Felt: good
Strength: Body weight and plyo box and boxing, Difficulty: easy, Felt: good
Loc: hood, Temp: 77°/77°, Time: 46:26, Pace: 9:17 avg, Difficulty: easy, Felt: good


  • I feel like I am going through the second summer heat/humidity acclimation. And am at the very beginning, where it feels miserable. I am not sure if I got reset, going to Alaska, or if the humidity and heat are a lot worse than they were in June. Probably a mix of both. Come on, body, get used to it!
  • Swimming laps is such a treat when it’s this hot out, though! I hope to keep it up after my Friday class as long as the weather’s good (and the outdoor pool is open!).

Link to Training Week 350

The real reason we moved to Zion

By , July 8, 2016 6:43 pm

So that on hot summer days, like today, I can run the five miles to Bobbi’s house and jump in to her pool!


Ahh yes. Cool, cool relief!

When we first looked at our house, back in August, I was so overly excited about it, and how close it was to Bobbi’s house, that I said to her one day “You guys plan on living in your house forever, right? Because we’re looking at one that’s only a few miles from you!” Basically, don’t move, because it would be awesome to have a ten minute drive to see you instead of forty-five minutes!

I felt foolish being so excited about it, so early (we didn’t think we’d get the house after that, then didn’t know until late November we were (hopefully) moving here), but Bobbi was excited too. Which made me so excited.

So I was happy today, to finally do the run between our places. Yay! I hope it’s something that happens many times again in the future! With or without the pool at the end.

Training Week 350

By , July 3, 2016 5:53 pm

Highlight of the Week: Running up and down the mountain in Alaska / biking in Alaska / swimming with Anne!


Monday | June 27, 2016: 4 m run
Loc: Eagle River, AK, Temp: 58°/60°, Time: 41:52, Pace: 10:27 avg, Difficulty: hard then (un!)easy, Felt: decent
Tuesday | June 28, 2016: 21.75 m ride (w/Dad & Will) + 1.4 m hike + 3 m run (counting as tempo)
Loc: Anchorage, Temp: 63°/65°, Time: 2:05:38, Pace: 10.4 mpg avg, Difficulty: easy/medium, Felt: good
Loc: Mt Baldy, Temp: 68°/68°, Time: 21:08, Pace: 7:02 avg, Difficulty: easy/hard, Felt: okay/out of breath

Wednesday | June 29, 2016: rest
Thursday | June 30, 2016: 5 m run
Loc: hood, Temp: 79°/78°, Time: 46:41, Pace: 9:20 avg, Difficulty: medium, Felt: hot, upset stomach toward end
Friday | July 1, 2016: teaching strength class + 800 m breaststroke swim (w/Anne) + 6 m run + 4 m run
Strength: body bars, Difficulty: medium, Felt: good to be back!
Loc: Grayslake outdoor pool, Temp (air): 61°/61°, Time: 22:36, Pace: 2:36min/100m, Difficulty: easy, Felt: great
Loc: hood, Temp: 66°/66°, Time: 56:48, Pace: 9:27 avg, Difficulty: hard, Felt: hot, sore quads (again)
Loc: hood, Temp: 67°/67°, Time: 37:56, Pace: 9:28 avg, Difficulty: easy, Felt: good, enjoyed the breeze

Saturday | July 2, 2016: 3 m run 
Loc: hood, Temp: 67°/70°, Time: 29:18, Pace: 9:46 avg, Difficulty: hard, Felt: hot and physically tired
Sunday | July 3, 2016: rest


  • My Monday run was up toward the top of the mountain (Mt. Baldy) our rental house was on in Alaska. It was a challenging run – 850 feet up in two miles! But the view was amazing and I got to see a moose up close!
  • Cycling in Anchorage on Tuesday is definitely one of my favorite memories from the trip, and I am so happy I got to do it! Speaking of cycling – my RAGBRAI packet came this week! WOOT WOOT! Four more weeks!!!
  • I ended up running down Mt. Baldy (on the roads) around 11:00 pm on Tuesday (the night before we left Alaska). Man. What a run. It was 1260 feet down. It was at 5K pace, but not quite 5K effort. But I still hit lactate threshold and my feet were BURNING. Fun and scary all at once! I knew it would kill my quads and it did – I was really feeling it on Thursday’s run (and Friday’s and Saturday’s).
  • Bobbi was telling me about corn remover bandages so I got the Dr Scholl’s brand to try and HOLY CRAP guys – it works! Whatever they put on the bandage softens up the area around the corn so you can take it right out, pain free. It will likely come back, but now I can remove it. SCHWEET. Cause I have to say it – I paid for these bandages on my own and this is my unbought opinion.
  • Friday was my first time using my Garmin watch to count laps in a pool. I was pleased with how well it worked and how easy it was to use! Anne and I plan to swim more this month!
  • Monthly recap time! May was such a crap month I was determined to make June better, and I did! June left me feeling much happier. In June I ran 180 miles and cycled 74.9 miles (6 indoor rides, 2 outdoor rides). I taught 6 strength classes and 2 fitness boxing classes, and did 5 strength sessions at home. I went hiking once (that I am counting from our trip anyway – there were a few other things I never turned my watch on for) and on one walk. My coldest outdoor run was 54°F and my warmest was 89°F.

Link to Training Week 349

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