March 2010

How can you not love this face?

Wow, it has been a while since I posted on here. And it’s been a while since I’ve been in the mood to be on Twitter a lot. I go in spurts. Sometimes I’m just about addicted to Twitter, other days I don’t want to really get on there, especially during lunch because 20 minutes later, there I still am, typing along with  my thumb and pointer finger (I know, I’m weird, I can’t really type with two thumbs.)

Anyway, what have I been up to since the Claddagh 4-mile race? Well, I was supposed to run a 5-mile race the following week, on March 14th.  Unfortunately that also fell on Day 2 of a 3 day deluge of rain, during which our area got 10 INCHES  of rain.  We are now in the middle of getting somewhere between 4-6 inches again.  Mind you, some folks have not stopped pumping water out of their basements during that time because we’ve had a few normal rain storms in between.  Lovely.

I feel like a wimp, but I just didn’t feel like running that race in a downpour, with 25-30 mph wind gusts.  I hated to disappoint my friend Meg, and I really did want that 3rd medal, but I guess for me, the third time (next year) will be the charm and I’ll finally get all 3.

Let’s see – I went to a Celtics game on St. Patrick’s Day, thanks to my husband who won seats just 14 rows off of the floor.  Nothing like being in Boston on a day that celebrates the Irish. 🙂  Then I took a few personal days and took it easy.

Penny and Terri at the tweet-up - finally we met!!

During my personal time off, I traveled to NYC.  I am so happy to report that I FINALLY met Penny, aka @southbaygirl on Twitter, of the PlanetYnnepRunning blog (she recently had to protect her blog so you have to request the ability to be read it).  She was in NYC to run the NYC Half Marathon, and asked if I could come down from the Boston area to meet her. I figured it would likely be the closest we could ever get to each other, so I went down and stayed with my brother and met her at a tweetup, and then again on Sunday at, and after, the race. She is, quite honestly, one of the most generous and genuine people I have ever met. And I felt like I’d already known her for quite some time. Because, in a way, we have. We’ve read each other’s blogs now for almost 2 years. Amazing, huh?

While I was in NYC, I had a great run with my brother on Sunday night (in SHORTS, no less.) Oh yeah, did I neglect to say that while I was there, it was also about 70 degrees? I know Penny was aggravated/frustrated by that, but for my part, I was LOVING it. (Especially since it went back to the 30s this past weekend her in MA.)

Penny and I, with @tinyjenna, @followjocelyn, and @katiemiller at the NYC Half Marathon

What’s on my horizon?  Um, a lot.  Work this Sunday, April 4th (volunteered to work without realizing it was Easter. Sigh.)  A big legal research teaching event on April 9th. A  5 mile race on April 10th.  Packet stuffing for the Boston Marathon. Then, the Boston Athletic Association 5K on April 18th, the day before the Boston Marathon.  Oh, and I’ll be meeting Lindsay, of Chasing the Kenyans, or @lindsaydecken on Twitter, the weekend of the Boston Marathon – hopefully she’ll be able to stay with me at least part of the time without having an asthma attack (the animals could do it.)  Yay!  (She’s another person whose blog I’ve been reading for at least 18 months now!)

Oh, and there will be more dog training classes in our future. We broke down and have taken Ruthie twice, to get her more acclimated to being around other dogs. We now realize it’s out of fear that she gets into fights. She even got into a fight at the dog school this past weekend. It was suggested we get her a muzzle – it will still allow her to breathe, of course, but sends a verbal cue to owners and other dogs that she is not one that plays well with others so much.  She loves people, though, and she really wants to be friends with our calico, Callie, so things could clearly be much worse. But doesn’t she look so sad?  (Bill petted her the whole 2 minutes this muzzle was on tonight and then she got a treat right after we removed it, so she wouldn’t feel like she was being punished.)  We’ve been told to put it on her at random times so she doesn’t just associate it with dog school.

Ruthie and her muzzle, looking so sad

Oh, and I have also been writing a lot more lately. Thanks to @ridgeley on Twitter, who was extremely generous with her time and advice, I bought myself a Toshiba netbook a few weeks ago. I absolutely love it.

toshiba nb305-450 - picture from

The battery power is great, the screen resolution is wonderful, it weighs almost nothing.  And, I LOVE the keyboard. I feel inspired just looking at it.  I’ve been taking it to work and am able to write on it almost every day at lunchtime.

And, for reasons I cannot go into, I have pulled myself out of, or begun to, anyway, pull myself out of a negative funk at work. I’ve decided to give more of the benefit of the doubt to some people and also to try to not let the stress of others affect me as much. I can try to help them and support them, but I can’t take everyone else’s problems and turn them into mine. It just weighs too much.

All of this, in addition to finishing Stephen King’s 1074 page tome, Under the Dome. And continuing to run in the early a.m.  I’d like to extend a  personal thank you to Turtlepower1 on Twitter for worrying about me. He got me motivated to write on here tonight!

Oh, and I have a few more products I can write about now – so stay tuned! (Nope, I didn’t forget about my cold weather running products, not at all!)  Hey, if you buy them now, they’ll all be on sale. 🙂

Yep, it’s been a pretty busy three weeks.


I GOT TO WEAR SHORTS TODAY! I GOT TO WEAR SHORTS TODAY! For some of you, this may not seem like a big deal, but to a girl who’s been wearing three layers on top and sometimes 2 layers on the bottom to run through this winter, this was freaking awesome!! We had two days this weekend of 50+ degree weather. Oh, how I love it!  (Right now, the sun is welcome. By May, I’ll want it to be overcast when I run races.)

And to prove how long it’s been since my skin has seen the sun (other than when it’s reflecting off of the sun, that is), here’s a picture of me and my friend and coworker, Meg, who ran the Claddagh 4 Miler earlier today. 

You may be wondering where my friend Lis was. I have bad news.  Those of you who have been reading my blog for a long time know that she has suffered off and on from shin splints.  That’s what she thought was bothering her again a few months ago, so she stopped running for a bit to give them rest, as everyone always prescribes. She then got really busy with work (I mean, insanely busy.) She ran the 3 mile race last Sunday, and by Tuesday she was in a lot of pain. Enough for a CPA to get herself to the doctor during busy season. Turns out that her doc thinks she’s got Lateral Compression Syndrome. I think that means her muscles are too big for their compartments?  Anyway, she’s been told surgery should make it all better. Some folks in her running club think physical therapy will make it better. All I know is, it sucks. It’s been killing her that she can’t run so much due to work, but now, to be really sidelined?  I mean, this REALLY sucks. She loves running and she’s an avid hiker. She basically can’t do anything if it involves her legs. Ugh.

Which is why I really wanted to get a PR today.  If  couldn’t do it for myself, I could do it for her.  And I did!! By a whole 2 minutes, and 9 seconds, per the official times.  I was so happy when I finished – I feel like I’m running strong this spring during my races, and I’m not sure how long it will last, but I am just going to go with the flow. And keep on thanking my guardian angels for giving me that little extra push whenever I need it. I will also continue loving my playlist of feel-good songs. They’re not always the fastest tempo but they lift my mood and that does a ton for me.

Now, before you read my stats for today, I’d like you to please see the elevation map on the USATF page.  Go ahead, click on this link.   If that doesn’t work, then click this link, and then click on the link that says “course map.” From that page, click on that little box that shows the elevation chart. That should explain my difference in splits for mile 2.

  • Mile 1: 8:15
  • Mile 2: 9:41
  • Mile 3: 8:06
  • Mile 4: 8:04
  • Official overall time: 34:31, 8:38 average mile pace
  • Official distance: 4 miles
  • Garmin distance: 4:07; 8:29 average mile pace (same time)
  • 288/909 overall
  • 43/179 in my division, W30-39 (I’m 37, hopefully the older I get, the faster I’ll get?!)

 Yes, Mile 2 has a killer hill. It’s bad enough that even over my headphones, I heard the “holy s56&#* and f$%@&” remarks fly out of people’s mouths as soon as they turned the corner, after already climbing for a bit. I kind of laughed inwardly because that’s exactly how I felt last year when I saw it. This year, I expected it. And this year, I also expected to have to walk it a bit. But I didn’t! (Well, unless you count the water stop where I then proceeded to suck in air, and panick a bit when I couldn’t catch my breath, thereby thinking that I was going to have an asthma attack and realizing my inhaler was nowhere near me. Hey, only one pocket in my shorts, and it was filled with sports beans. A girl’s gotta have her sports beans.)

Anyhoo, the course’s 1st and 4th miles are blessedly flat.  Mile 2 has the aforementioned hill/mini-mountain, and mile 3 reminds you that what goes up, must come down, and thank God, quickly so. It was about mile 2 that I decided, yep, it’s time for the shirt to come off. I almost couldn’t believe I was doing it myself. After all, this morning I was still debating the shorts vs. capri tights issue. (Carol, aka ridgeley on twitter had told me this week to wear shorts and a short sleeve shirt, and I was having trouble believing it, just because I’ve been so used to wearing so many layers, it takes some mental adjustment every year at this time.)

Anyway, I finished in just my shorts and running bra. Did I also mention I was wearing my spring/summer running shoes, the Brooks Adrenaline 9s? (I wear the Brooks ASRs in the winter, as they’re warmer and more water-resistant.)  It feels SO GOOD to not have to wear warm weather gear just for once.

I know, I know, this weather is a big tease. We’re very likely to get more snow or a hard frost before spring really comes.  Just let me enjoy it for a little while….and my PR until next week, when I do the 5 mile race (never done that course before, but the elevation chart does look a little bit more forgiving.)

I do need to give a shout-out to my coworker, Will. He was excited for most of last year to move into a new division.  Go figure why:  Will’s stats: 1/27 M60-69; time of 27:21, average pace per mile: 6:51.   Sometimes good guys do finish first!!

#1 and #2, done!!

run forrest run, photo by boo_licious, on

In the interest of full disclosure, I wrote this post last week but didn’t get to post it, so I’ll write over the next few days about this week’s session. (I know, everyone out there is leaning on the edge of their chairs, and starting to turn blue from holding their breath. “Oh Terri, how will we ever live until we read about THIS WEEK’S SESSION?!”)

You all know how I love my FGA sessions (Forrest Gump Anonymous, for those of you not in the know.)  They’re so much better to get through when running with people, than when I have to get through them on the treadmill, all on my lonesome.

So, I was understandably pumped to get to the indoor track last week. If only my legs and brain would have shown up with me and my heart’s desire to go fast.  It was like my heart was calling out to a room full of body parts “Legs??  Legs??  Leggssssss?????” ala Ferris Bueller’s Day Off.   Drool was running down Legg’s and Brain’s faces that day.  You get the picture.

Usually I can run the laps around the track in 40 seconds or less. Not last week.  I averaged 42-43 seconds.  (For newbie readers, 11 times around that indoor track equals a mile.)  Most of my 400s ended up being 1:55-1:57ish and my 880s ended up being 4:02.

Why the problems last week? Not sure, honestly. I had my inhaler but didn’t feel like I needed it (Our coaches have noted that the air is much drier in there and it can affect you.)  Maybe the workout?

  • 1 x400; rest one minute
  • 1 x 400; rest one minute
  • 1 x 800 rest two minutes.

Repeat 4 times, for a distance of 4 miles, plus warm-up and cool-down.

We realized that we were actually running 880s so that accounted for me doing those in 4:00 to 4:02 rather than 3:50 like before.  It could be that my body is still not as fit as it was before I had a bad head cold and general fatigue a few weeks back. Regardless, I do think that even with my running less miles per week this winter than I did last year, I’m still feeling like at least for the shorter races, I’m a bit faster than before. So the speed workouts do work.