Training Tip Tuesday #3

For this week’s Training Tip Tuesday, I’m bringing up foam rolling (again). I’ve written in the past about why I love foam rolling and my foam rolling routine. But, as I keep on saying, I fell off of regular foam rolling post-Twin Cities Marathon and I’ve been struggling to get back on.

I’m just starting week three of marathon training but I can tell the difference between week three of Twin Cities Marathon training and now. Before, I’d been regularly foam rolling and now I’m feeling a lot more tightness in my quads and hamstrings. Places that I don’t normally get as sore in.

Now I’m just trying to play catch up and treat my body right. Hopefully my body will start responding to regular foam rolling soon so it recovers faster post-run.

Is there a routine you’ve fallen off of that you’re trying to get back into? Let me know in the comments below so we can support each other!

Eau Claire Marathon Training Week Two

Week two of marathon training is in the books! The weather was all over the place (and so was my pacing) but I got it all done and had a great week.

Monday, January 8

When I woke up on Monday, I so incredibly sore. Part of it is is from my increase in mileage (I ran 26 miles total last week!) but it wasn’t just my legs that were sore. My back and arms were also really sore from the aerial workout I did the day before. It really proves that even if you work out a lot, doing something new really takes a toll on your body!

I still got in my strength training and cardio after work but I did go down in weights for my second superset. It felt good to get moving after sitting all day at work but I was still so sore after my workout. I got in some time with the foam roller afterwards (along with Vinnie “helping” me by licking my hands and face) which helped a little but I know the soreness just has to work itself out throughout the week.

Tuesday, January 9

3 miles ~ 32:45 ~ 10:53 min/mile

To day that I was excited about Tuesday’s run was an understatement. Mostly because, it was above freezing outside! It was 39 when I got out of work so I was able to wear capris and a long sleeved short on my run. No multiple layers needed and no treadmill needed either. It felt so freeing to be running outside without bundling up.

I’m getting better at pacing myself at the start of the run, I realized I was going way too fast going out and slowed out down to finish the first mile in 10:52. Mile two was about 10 seconds faster (probably because of the downhill at the end) but I held myself back on the third mile to complete that in 11:01. And it feels so easy to go at that pace (which is why I’m having a hard time going too fast).

After I got back, I got in core and foam rolling sessions. I’m really loving using the NTC app for my core work, it’s just so simple and I have a good variety of no equipment workouts. So I got in my one core session for the week and I’m hoping to get in a bonus session too.

Wednesday, January 10

5 miles ~ 53:44 ~ 10:43 min/mile

It was still warmer than it has been lately, but not as warm as I expected it to be on Wednesday. One thing I need to start doing during the winter is pack an extra layer for running clothes. I only had a long sleeved shirts and capris so I was a little worried when it was barely above freezing (instead of the high near 40 my weather app had predicted). Luckily, I had a pair of thin gloves and I kept warm enough on this run!

Since I’m leaving work early on Wednesdays to do these runs, I’m hoping to run along the river unless I have to go on the treadmill. It’s a more scenic route than the area around my apartment plus there’s more elevation changes. And looking at the Eau Claire Marathon route, I’m going to want to get in as much hill running as I can.

A gorgeous run along the river today!

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I was really surprised at how fast my mile splits were even with a slightly hillier route than normal. I kept on trying to slow myself down each mile, which did work but I still had a fast start. But I’m really proud of how well I felt finishing this since I made it up the long incline along this route that’s been my enemy for a while. Now I’ve got my eyes on conquering another long incline that’s just beyond where I turned around on this run. I’m pretty sure I’ll be able to fit that in on my six mile run next Wednesday so I can try getting up it without walking.

Thursday, January 11

3 miles ~ 33:01 ~ 10:57 min/mile

Well, our slightly warmer weather is gone in Minnesota. Most of our snow melted (and froze) overnight only to be replaced by a couple of inches of fresh snow. Plus the temperature dropped during the day to single digits and the winds picked up. I decided not to run outside for safety reasons between the blowing snow and cold winds. So on the treadmill I went.

My calves were feeling my mileage as soon as I started running. Which isn’t uncommon for my Thursday runs but it’s annoying nevertheless. I did do some dynamic moves before running (which I haven’t been doing like I should) so hopefully that helped a little bit. Nothing too much to report from this run except that I was so ready for a rest day. Plus I did a quick eight minute core session afterwards to make it core workout #2 for the week!

Friday, January 12

Rest day and another freezing cold day. It barely got above freezing and I’m just done with this weather. It’s not just the fact that I’ve been spending so much time on the treadmill but I can’t even get in my normal amount of non-workout activity because it’s so cold. Vinnie goes out for less than 10 minute walks when it’s this cold so without working out I’m barely getting 7,500 steps in a day. I’m keeping my fingers crossed for consistent double digit temperatures soon!

I did a quick yoga video after work focused on loosening up tension in the lower back and legs since my legs are feeling it now that I”m back to marathon training. I’ve also started wearing my compression socks more often now too (luckily I have multiple pairs) which seems to help with my tight calves. But even my hamstrings and quads are feeling really tight when I foam roll which didn’t happen as much in the past. Hopefully getting back into regular foam rolling (and pre-run warm ups) will help out!

Just a little yoga with Vinnie tonight!

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Saturday, January 13

5 miles ~ 54:48 ~ 10:56 min/mile

On the treadmill again, this time at 7 a.m.! We had my nephew’s 1st birthday later in the day so it’s was easier to walk over to the apartment gym and get on the treadmill tha waiting for the gym to open at 8 a.m. And it wasn’t warm enough to run outside, we had a windchill warning so on the treadmill to run and watch Supernatural it was.

I did a good dynamic warm up before starting running so I felt better starting out. Hopefully I’ll get better at actually warming up before my runs and that will help everything feel better during and post-run. My first two miles were a little bit fast (in the low 10:50s) as I tried to suss out where I should be running at (since I’ve found that pace the treadmill tells is way slower than what I’m actually running at) but my last three were just a couple seconds off from 11 minute miles. Yay for better pacing!

Sunday, January 14

11 miles ~ 1:53:40 ~ 10:19 min/mile

Sunday morning I bundled up to go out for my long run. It was below zero when I left the house but “just single digits” below zero. I was more than willing to put on extra layers so I didn’t spend two hours on the treadmill. Running in the cold is much less horrible than spending two hours on the treadmill.

As you’ve probably realized already, I didn’t go at an easy pace for this race. And the strange thing is, it felt like I was running easy for this run. But the first eight miles I averaged a 10:10~ish pace. Which is only 20 seconds per mile slower than the pace in half marathon PR last spring. And it felt awesome! (But I swear, I’m not going to speed through all of my long runs because I know those will be more quality miles if they aren’t 20 seconds faster than race pace).

My last three miles were much closer to my goal easy pace of 11 minute miles (at 10:49, 10:34 and 10:58). Part of the reason these were much slower (besides that I was going into wind at this point after going at a fast pace for eight miles) was the elevation gain I had. The miles leading up either had slight elevation gains or were elevation losses but miles 9 and 11 had 155 and 137 feet of elevation gain. I had some big hills to get up and made them up mostly without walking (I walked a little bit up the hill at mile 9 but that’s the one I’m working on making it up without walking).

After my run, I stopped at the gym for some stretching and Nuun in the sauna. Which felt amazing after my run. That’s something I’m hoping to keep up post-long run for as long as I can, but once I get past 15 miles I don’t feel comfortable driving after my long run. My body is just completely worn out at that point.


And that wraps up week two of marathon training! Next week, my mileage on Wednesday and Saturday (pace run!) goes up but I get a cutback on my long run mileage. Let me know in the comments how your last week went!

Top Five Running Mistakes I Make

I just Googled “mistakes runners make” and got 7.3 million results in 0.64 seconds. There’s are a lot of mistakes we can make as runners and I’m probably making a lot of them too! So today, I’m sharing the top five mistakes I’m currently making and how I’m working to improve them.

#5 Going too hard on easy runs

My easy run pace is targeted at 11 minute miles and my long runs should be closer to 11:30 minute miles (which is 30 and 60 seconds slower than my marathon pace). But, if you’ve read last week’s recap of marathon training, I’m having problems with it.

My fix: Slow it down! Even though I can hold a 10:30 pace for miles, I shouldn’t be doing it unless it’s a pace run. So I need to really slow down, even though it feels like I’m going slower than a turtle.

#4 Starting too fast

Going along with #5, not only am I going too hard but I start out too fast and feel the need to keep up that pace for the entire run!

My fix: I need to run with my head. Just because I’m feeling awesome doesn’t mean I should be running all out from the start. Especially when it comes to race day.

#3 Constantly watching my watch

There are times where I’m constantly looking at my watch to see how far I’ve gone, how far I have left to go or how fast I’m going. And it really takes me out of my run while I”m doing it.

My fix: Cover up the watch! This is a lot easier right now since (unless I’m stuck on the treadmill) my watch is under a couple of layers. I can still hear my mile splits beeps but it’s just too much work to uncover it just to check on my watch. The plan is just to leave it covered unless I’m doing a pace run to avoid the temptation of watching it too closely. Although I’ll need a new plan for when it’s warmer outside….

#2 Sabotaging myself

Even though I’ve been through one marathon training cycle (and multiple half marathon cycles), I still pre-race (or even pre-run) nerves. Especially now that I’m training for a marathon in the winter. I get all worked up in my own head.

My fix: Working on relaxation and visualization techniques. I’m already working on daily meditation to help me relax and I feel like it’s slowly helping out. I’m also planning on re-listening to “How Bad Do You Want It” because I found that to be really empowering for visualization techniques.

#1 Not warming up pre-run

Lots of time, I’m changing straight into my running clothes and going straight out for a run. Not the best, especially when it’s below freezing outside and I’ve been sitting at a desk all day long.

My fix: Getting back into doing dynamic warm ups pre-run! Even though it’s cold outside, I’m inside before heading out to run and that’s the perfect opportunity to do some dynamic warm ups. So I’m getting back into doing leg swings, lunges, squats and high knees before heading out for a run!

What running mistakes do you make? Let me know in the comments so I don’t feel so alone!


New Year, Same Me

As I’ve said before, my theme of 2018 is consistency. I’m not trying to reinvent or make a major change in my life but trying to keep on with my previous habits. So here are five of the habits from previous years I’m keeping in 2018!

Running Routes

Last year, I tried out some new running routes and found some new favorites. So I’m going to continue running those routes especially for my marathon long runs. It’s so helpful to have specific routes that I know how far I have to go to reach X miles via a landmark rather than having to pay attention to my watch.

Plus, it will be fun to run my summer routes in the winter and have a completely different view!


I say the term podwalk on another blog and I totally love it! I listen to a ton of podcasts and my favorite ways to unwind is a nice walk while catching up on my feed. Right now, because it’s so cold outside, most of my podwalks are dog  walks with Vinnie. But I’m looking forward to it getting warmer outside so I can take an afternoon podwalk at work.


I really enjoyed incorporating yoga into my marathon training last year and I’m continuing it this year. It’s an awesome way to get in some activity on my rest day and it helps a ton with soreness. I’m branching out and trying some new videos so let me know your favorites!

Foam Rolling

Almost daily foam rolling made a huge difference in my 2017 training. I could tell the difference in how sore I felt during training once I got a couple weeks of regular rolling in! Even though I got off the foam rolling train post-marathon, I’ve been really good at doing it now that I’m back at marathon training.

Making Lunch at Home

I love having leftovers for lunch. Maybe I’m strange but it's so nice to just be able to grab and heat up at lunch instead of trying to go out and find food. Plus, we have always have a big variety of food in the fridge so it’s easy to mix it up everyday.

What are some habits you’re continuing in 2018? Let me know in the comments!

Why I enjoy being a running introvert

You might have noticed a pattern in my running. Unless it’s a race, I rarely run with someone else. In fact, in the last year, I think the only times I ran with someone else not in a race was when Mike joined me on a bike. Unless you count being on the treadmill at the gym as running with someone else.

And I actually enjoy running solo. (But if Mike is reading this, he’s always welcome to join me.) I’ve thought about meeting up with a local running group a couple of times but never pulled the trigger because of how much I enjoy my solo runs. I’m a running introvert for sure and here are some of the reasons I love running solo.

  • It gives me solo thinking time (especially during the work week). My brain sometimes feels like it’s going a million miles a minute at work so I especially enjoy my post-work runs. I don’t have to think about anything and can just let my mind go blank. (That’s also why I’ve been enjoying my morning meditation times).

  • I get to catch up podcasts and audiobooks. I’m still trying to play catch up on podcasts from getting behind over the Christmas break (since I normally listen to podcasts during the work day) so my runs are extra time I get to listen to them. Or, if I ever get caught up, I can download an audiobook and work on the my 12 books in 2018 goal.

  • I can go my own pace. I’m not super speedy and am trying to keep my runs around an 11 minute mile pace. And it’s easier to just go my own pace than trying to be part of a group. (Although I do love running with a pace group in races!)

  • I can make my own schedule. I have a “let’s get going” mentality when it comes to my running, I want to get started as soon as I can. Which means about 7 or 8 a.m. on the weekends and as soon as I get out of work Monday through Friday. And that doesn’t really fit in as nicely with the running groups around here.

Do you run with a group or go at it solo? Let me know in the comments!