marathon training (week five)

i'm feeling tired this week. like...physically, emotionally, metaphysically, and super-megaphysically. it might have something to do with the fact that i get an average of 5.4 hours of sleep per night, or it could have something to do with the fact that i'm training for a marathon. either way...i'm exhausted. but guess what? i'm not stopping! (hoots and hollers in the background) i've also been reading anything i can find on scott jurek and finishing up the book born to run to use for motivation/inspiration.

i switched up my diet a week or so ago. i'll be was a good move (so far). i've always read/heard about athletes doing a five to six micromeal a day diet, but i never really got interested in it. that is, until i realized what that meant. i could literally eat every couple hours with no guilt. if planned right (which we all know i'm a planner) it can work out awesome...and it has so far (except for the days where i accidentally don't eat enough and then eat too much to get "caught back up").

another thing...did you know i'm into music? well, i'm not really...but i did just stumble across a cool band called My Dad Vs. Yours. along with a funny name (of course, my dad would win!)...they are really talented band. i'd say it's for fans of Explosions In The Sky or Unwed Sailor type bands. you know...bands that are so cool they don't need a singer?

my gym workouts have been going really good, too. i was able to go twice this week (which is my goal), but some weeks are harder than others. i've been gaining some muscle, so at least i know i'm doing something right, right? right. it sucks to see the number on the scale move up though...but that's a totally different story.

one thing i learned/re-learned this week in regards to running: there are days when you really don't want to run...and you don't really even need to run, but you do anyway. and then? you feel freakin' GREAT! then a couple days later you forget all about this phenomenon until you run when you don't feel like it and you're reminded of how awesome it feels!

week five numbers:

starting weight: 178.4

monday - rest
tuesday - 3 miles / 25:43 (8:35) 30 minutes of strength training
wednesday - 5 miles / 44:21 (8:53)
thursday - 3 miles / 26:00 (8.40) 30 minutes of strength training
friday - rest! (resting with an exclamation point is the best)
saturday - 10 miles / 01:32:51 (9:18)
sunday - rest and praising the Lord!

total mileage for the week: 21 miles

ending weight: 180

total weight loss/gain: +1.6


we call him jasper.

my nephew, Jasper (see above), is a cool dude. you can read (plenty of pictures, too!) a lot about him here at my sister's blog. although she is a nerd...she's made out to be a pretty awesome sister. we won't get into the "cool contest" in this post. just ask my parents...they'll tell you the truth. i have emails to prove who they think is best.

i was looking through all of the pictures Emily took over the holidays and came across a few pictures of me and Jasper playing with a new toy he got Christmas morning. it made me realize how much i love that little guy and just how awesome he is/is going to be as he gets older. i CANNOT wait until he grows up more and we can scheme together and really begin the "freak out your parents" phase and the "holy crap, uncle tony is off the hook" phase. yes, he will speak that way...because i will teach him!


marathon training (week four)

useless fact disclaimer...four is my lucky number. so, now you know. it feels good to be on week four of training. i was a little worried (mostly in the way your mom used to worry about you driving through parklands at night because deer are always around there and assuming you're speeding like a punk kid type of way) about any type of pain coming back in my legs. awesome to say...pain is nowhere to be found.

the week kicked off with me doing my four mile run instead of the scheduled three. i really missed my original four mile route, so i did it tuesday. it felt great and i ran it in a pretty good time. the rest of my week went pretty good, too. besides the cold weather (it's illinois, people!) i really felt great all week.

the nine miles today was just as you might think a nine mile run would be when it's five degrees out with a bit of a wind from the northeast. it was the type of run where all of a sudden you're caught thinking, "i'm not going to make it. i'm going to freeze to death out here and no one will find me...ever." now, one might say, "well, tony...shouldn't you feel a little safer since you have a road ID?" and my response would be, "yes, if i would've remembered to take it off my old pair of shoes and put it on my new ones, but i didn't so that automatically means if i die out here from cold no one will know who i am." (obviously, i run out in the wilderness where civilization is nowhere to be found.)

one thing i learned/re-learned this week in regards to running: people in cars are not your friend. while running, consider all vehicles heat seeking missiles directed at you. be prepared to hop off the road into a freezing cold snowy mud mix while almost falling but still managing to keep pace while turning around to give a nice, "hey thanks for keeping me on my toes, Jesus loves You" wave.

week four numbers:

starting weight: 179

monday - rest
tuesday - 4 miler / 32:24 (8:06 miles)
wednesday - 3 miles / 23:10 (7:44) (sidenote...this is the fastest i've ever done three. should be faster.)
thursday - 3 miles / 24:54 (8:18)
friday - rest (stretched my legs every other hamstrings are WAY tight)
saturday - 30 minutes of strength training & a one mile (resistance 8) on a stationery bike
sunday - 9 miles / 01:19:47 (8:52)
total mileage for the week: 19 miles

ending weight: 178.4

total weight loss/gain: -0.6


pops and hisses included

one of the best sounds in the world (to me) is the sound of the pops and hisses coming from a record player. what i like even more than that is the sound in between tracks on an album. it does something to me. takes me back? back to where? i don't know. i think it takes me to a feeling, not a place. the feeling of music can be an experience to say the least. i think every time i hear that specific sound it reminds me of music and all it has to offer. what all it has done and what all it's doing.

for Christmas i got a record player. this past weekend while emily and i were up north watching her aunt and uncle's dogs and cat we went to a couple places for me to really get my record collection going. i think emily is a bit nervous though now seeing A.) how long i can spend in a record store, and B.) how much i'm probably going to spend on my collection.


marathon training (week three)

this week started out a little sketchy. as you remember (because it was sooooo long ago) i had a miserable run on sunday, so i was a little worried how monday was going to feel. surprisingly, i woke up feeling a little stiff, but once i got to work, all of the stiffness kind of just went away. i tried my best to stretch my legs as much as i could throughout the day. i have to admit...having coworkers walk in on you while you're stretching your quads is just a little embarrassing...not like "full-on embarrassing" but quite close.

my four miler today (01/12/11) was SO good. man, i love a good run! i wish i knew what i did different to make me run like that...two thumbs up. although it was a brisk twenty degrees out with a MAJOR wind from the northwest...i was "flying" and felt great at the same time! people were driving by cheering me on and yelling how skinny i looked and that i was running so fast and all that cool stuff that didn't really happen but in my mind it did. (now you see why i use run-on sentences so often it works great in jokes and storytelling.)

good news for you, too. week four i start timing all my runs. it should be exciting/humiliating. mostly excited because i've felt like i've gotten a little stronger, so i'm hoping it shows in my times. i also broke in my new shoes for training. i'm using a pair of saucony progrid guide 3's and plan on getting a second pair to work into my training to use for the race. by the time i get closer to the race the pair i just broke in will be ready to retire, so i'll need a back-up pair to be race ready. comprende?

one thing i learned/re-learned this week in regards to running: rest days are hard. i can't STAND taking time off of running (hours/days/months). but, as i learned the hard way, and reminded by my friend have to know when to say enough is enough and take a freakin' break! my legs say thank you.

week three numbers:

starting weight: 180

monday - rest (lots of stretching)
tuesday - 3 miler*
wednesday - 4 miler (a fantastic four, original, right? was great! fast and fun!)
thursday - 3 miler (second fastest ever @ 23:44) and 40 minutes of strength training before work
friday - rest
saturday - rest
sunday - 5 miler (up at Emily's aunt and uncle's place. i consider them my aunt and uncle. and they have nice running grounds up there.)

total mileage for the week: 15 miles

ending weight: 179

total weight loss/gain: -1

*comfortable pace = somewhere between 8:00 - 8:45 miles
**marathon pace = my goal is sub 4:00:00, so i'm shooting for right around 9:00 miles
***long runs = just finish :)


marathon training (week two)

today (1/07/11) was one of those days where i feel like i'm not a real runner. you know...a "runner," runner. it's easy to come out with it now. i'm hard on myself. a little too hard. not like...i hate myself, but i'm pretty much a jerk sometimes to myself. simply put. i don't see myself as a runner that's for sure. i still see myself as..well..i won't say "heavy," but i don't see myself thin either. it's a struggle i have. i won't lie's been one of the hardest things i've dealt with since i've lost the weight. gaining a new self image and self confidence to go along with it was harder than i could ever imagine. emily will attest to this...i've said it before, "if i would've known it'd be this hard...i would've never lost the weight to begin with!" obviously, i don't really think that...but some days it feels that way.

running 20 miles a week automatically makes you stick thin, right? wrong.
working out 3-4 times a week automatically makes you get ripped, right? wrong.
counting calories until your friends and family poke fun of you makes you thin, right? wrong.
reading health magazines/articles makes you healthy, right? wrong.

realizing that some days suck and you mess up and overeat, but knowing tomorrow you can move on and be the healthy, fit dude you truly are makes you thin, right? you're on the right track.

today (1/09/11) i did my 7 mile long run. i made it out right around 7am with a temperature of 3 degrees, but no wind. was one of the most miserable runs i have ever experienced. i'm the type of runner that normally gets into the "groove" about a mile into a run. well, today, it never happened. what did happen, you ask? my legs were cramping, i couldn't get warm, my left contact was really aggravating my eye, i had to pee, the crown of the road was messing with my right shin, my gloves felt too tight, the wind picked up each mile, and not to give out too much information (if i preface a sentence with that it probably means i'm going to give out too much information), but my "dude parts" were frozen. with all that said, running today absolutely sucked. it was the type of run when you finally finish you say, "what the crap am i doing this for? seriously...that was miserable!" now as i sit here in a nice warm house after a warm shower wearing warm clothes and warm slippers eating three bananas...i'm shivering cold! isn't running a total smash!?

something that is a little stressful and has me a bit worried is the "minor discomfort" (that's runner-talk for pain, but being too stubborn to admit it) in my right shin. i'm praying it was just from the crown of the road or even that the shoes i'm in have about 310 miles on them. they normally last about 350 give or take a few.

one thing i learned/re-learned this week in regards to running: no matter what i say/do/think/feel/hear....i LOVE running!  

week two numbers:

starting weight: 177.4
monday - cross training (30 minutes of strength training)
tuesday - 3 miler*
wednesday - 3 miler**
thursday - 3 miler (too fast)
friday - rest! and rest!
saturday - cross training (30 minutes of strength training)
sunday - 7 mile long run***

total mileage for the week: 16 miles

ending weight: 180 (lame)

total weight loss/gain: +2.6

*comfortable pace = somewhere between 8:00 - 8:45 miles
**marathon pace = my goal is sub 4:00:00, so i'm shooting for right around 9:00 miles
***long runs = just finish :)

enjoy this. if it ever seems as if i am this guy...please, please let me know. just not while i'm running. :)


marathon training (week one)

game on! week one is done. only seventeen more to go!

my weeks start on mondays and end with a long run on sundays. week one was not really the way i wanted my training to start. somehow i got sick over Christmas weekend. it was almost like the flu, but it only lasted a couple days. needless to was freakin' awful training with all that happening! during one of my runs (no pun intended) i actually threw up. luckily i wasn't around too many houses, so i'm pretty sure no one saw. can you imagine if you saw a runner throw up midrun? honestly...i kind of felt hardcore. well, not at the time. at the time i was thinking, "what am i doing out here!?! why is this so important!?! what did i eat that looks like that!?!" and then i finished and learned the at least the first two questions i was contemplating.

my legs feel good. most importantly...i don't feel any knee pain most of the day, so that's a really good sign. late sunday afternoon after the six miler i felt a little achiness in both knees, but it seemed to fade out by later in the evening. it feels SO good to get back into running. being off because of an injury is honestly really hard for me. it makes me feel lazy and stressed. i know it's silly...but at the same time, i know other runners totally understand this feeling.

in case anyone is interested in my times for each of my runs...i'll be timing all of my runs once i get into week three. the first couple of weeks i really want to focus on getting back into the 'training mindset' and not focus solely on time. you i'll be doing the last fifteen weeks of training.

one thing i learned this week in regards to running: i'm still not a fan of listening to music while running...but i do love listening to some blues or jazz before i head out.

week one numbers:

starting weight: 181.3

monday - rest (what better way to kick off training, right?)
tuesday - 3 miler comfortable pace* (cp)
wednesday - 3 miler marathon pace** (mp)
thursday - 3 miler (cp)
friday - cross training (30 minutes of strength training and 5 miles on stationary bike with level 10 resistance)
saturday - rest (happy new year)
sunday - 6 mile long run*** (cp)
total mileage for the week: 15 miles

ending weight: 177.4

total weight loss/gain: -3.9

*comfortable pace = somewhere between 8:00 - 8:45 miles
**marathon pace = my goal is sub 4:00:00, so i'm shooting for right around 9:00 miles
***long runs = just finish :)