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Posts Tagged ‘fitness’

I’m very happy to report that I think I really did learn some lessons from my last, long, dehydrating run.¬†Miracles do still happen!! ūüôā

¬†On October 12th, I ran 20 miles!!! I not only ran 20 miles, but I felt great before, during, and after my run!! I was hydrating the days before with water and NUUN.¬†The day of the run I stuck to my MAF¬†for the first half – my daughters, Jenna and Emily, made sure of that!! ūüôā¬† They are training for the CIM also and were running 14 miles with me and then I would carry on for another 6 miles with the promise that I would stick to MAF until the last two miles then I could run as fast as my little heart desired.¬† I also made sure that I was drinking water every time I heard my running program notify me of another mile.¬† I fueled as necessary with gels and¬† drank my recovery drink after the run.¬†This, followed by a nice relaxing breakfast out with my girls, made a perfect Saturday morning.

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Emily, Me, Jenna – I love running with these girls!!!

Last Saturday, October 19th, I ran the Folsom Blues Half Marathon in Folsom.  It was the same basic course around Lake Natoma that I have been training on.  I ran with my friend, Debora, who I believe is still my friend even after I ran the race higher than my MAF, which meant higher than her MAF.

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Me and Debora (I’m holding Emily’s¬†coffee so she could take a pic – hmmm . . . a sip might have helped!!)

The temperature¬†began in the 50’s.¬†The sun was just peaking it’s head up over the skyline when the race started.¬† It was a perfect day for racing.

The race started out on roads, which were nice and wide and eventually funneled down to the bike trail, which was not nice and wide.¬† The weaving in and around others became like a puzzle of sorts.¬† In time it thinned out.¬†ūüôā

I knew I wasn’t going to run by MAF and tried to keep my heart rate 10-15 above MAF, which was doable most of the time.¬† It never fails at the end of the race, yards before the finish line, even if we are going uphill, Debora sprints to the end and, of course, I need to join her in that – huffing and puffing!! It wasn’t a PR for me, but it was a great indication that training by MAF has given me a good aerobic foundation to support my faster running and not feel like¬†I’m dying.¬† I’m glad that I have been adding one or two faster paced runs in each week.¬† I can see that I need to add more race pace runs to my training, as my hip flexor the last two miles was screaming at me, a new pain,¬†which¬†I don’t have with my slower running.¬† Foam rolling, after the run,¬†took care of that.

I am fascinated by my body and how it is learning to adapt to longer, slower, running and yet, also learning how to run shorter faster runs.  Am I weird?!!!

I love to hear how others fuel before, during, and after a run and how that affects them.  I love to try different ways of fueling for myself and then tweak when needed.

I am learning, although I think I already knew this, that I am very competitive . . . with myself!!! When I reach one goal, I set a new goal.¬† When I reach that goal, I set another¬†. . . why do I feel so compelled to strive for faster . . . why can’t I just be content¬†to run and enjoy?!!!

It is a battle of my mind – scary place to¬†be, trust me!! ūüôā

I am working on being content in my running . . . enjoying my running . . . being thankful that I have been gifted with the desire to run and to run for God . . . His glory . . . ultimately it is all for Him!!!

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Steve, Me, Debora

Finishing = Winning

My new motto – because it’s true!!!

Have a great week Рget a run in . . . you know you want to. 

Patty ūüôā

 

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I am remiss in writing a post these last couple of weeks, partly due to total frustration with my long run of a little over a week ago.  Thankfully, time has gone by and I have had a chance to get over it and hopefully learn from my mistakes and move on to more enjoyable long runs, as I am training for my first marathon and venturing into the unknown.

As I look¬†back, many things were out of the ordinary for my 18 mile run a¬†couple of Sundays ago.¬† I started later in the afternoon, around 2:00, which meant it was much warmer.¬† I was not adequately fueled before my run.¬† I had actually planned on running by MAF, which I have been doing for all of my long runs.¬† Today, though, I was thinking and talking with, Cara, about my goals for my marathon pace and what was possible.¬† The run started downhill and I just ran a natural pace, not fast, but about 10 above MAF.¬† It felt good and I ended up running the whole 18 miles between 10-20 above MAF.¬† Under different circumstances and if I was prepared that probably would have been a great idea, but today . . . not so good!! ūüė¶

Things that didn’t go right . . .

1.¬† I didn’t fuel properly before a faster-paced¬†run.

2.¬† I didn’t fuel enough during the longer run . . . that was faster than planned.

3.¬† It was warmer than I thought outside and I wasn’t drinking enough . . . resulting in dehydration.

4.¬† My heart rate didn’t go back down when I slowed to a very slow pace, indicating dehydration.

5.  When I slowed to walk up the last hill, I was so nauseous I was sure I was going to throw up Рanother indication of dehydration.

At the end, I ended up having to sit down I felt so faint and eventually lying down for a bit on the ground.  As I was lying there feeling oh so sick, I really wondered what the heck I was doing training for a marathon.  What was I thinking?!!!! I made it home, only to finally throw up.  It was reminiscent of an earlier 11 mile run, a couple of years ago, when I felt the same way and it was from dehydration.  The scary part, to me, is that I had my hydration pack on filled with water and NUUN (electrolyte replacement) and was sipping it along the entire run, but when I looked at what was left, only half was gone.

Things I learned . . . hopefully!!!

1. To fuel correctly for the run.

2.  My long runs are meant to be run at a slower pace for the most part, maybe the last 4 Р6 at a faster pace in preparation for the marathon.

3.¬† Hydrate – purposefully drinking, even if I don’t want to, while running.

4. Pay attention to my heart rate if I am slowing and my heart rate isn’t dropping there is a problem.

5. Carry salt tablets with me and be aware of the heat.

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Me, Amy(first time rockin’ a¬†half-marathoner), Lhia(my new running friend), and Debora

The good news is that I ran the Urban Cow Half Marathon with friends this past Sunday!!

What a refreshing 13.1 miles with¬†Debora¬†and Amy and my new friend, Lhia (a co-worker of Amy’s).¬† It was so much fun to run along side Amy, who was running her first half marathon!! The Urban Cow was my first ever half marathon last year, so I knew how she was feeling towards the end and the push to keep going through the pain.¬† It was a push towards the end, but she pushed through and totally rocked the race.

It was a refreshing and encouraging run for me after my previous run!!   I ran by  MAF  the entire distance and I felt most wonderful. I made sure I was hydrating.  The temps were much cooler!!  I realized how far I had come since running this race last year.  I had continued running and trying to run a few longer runs each month.  I have become a stronger runner through continued training and have come to a point of great enjoyment, for the most part, when I run.  The result of that training, was being able to run a very difficult race last year and feeling relaxed and enjoying every moment of the race this year.  Yay for running!!

I guess all this to say there are bad runs and good runs, but really – they are all GOOD!!! I’m out moving and doing good for my body and learning all the time what my body is telling me.¬† I’m learning to read it better.

As always, I am thankful to an amazing God, who has made this amazing body that I live in and is capable of so much more than I ever thought it could be.¬† I’m thankful that He is always with me and is always teaching me and that He loves me more than I will ever be able to grasp.¬† I’m thankful that He has gifted me with the ability to run and to enjoy the run.¬† I am thankful for all of the friends He has brought into my life through running.¬† I’m looking forward to meeting many more.

Enjoy your week – get a run in!!

Patty ūüôā

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The days are beginning to cool off, not quite enough for my running, but it is better.  I LOVE summer!!!!

This is the first summer I have been consistent in my running – not so good in the heat, hence my desire for fall and cooler temps.¬† I can’t believe I am actually looking forward to cold weather running!!! Please remind me of this statement in February, please!!

I try to run one longer weekly¬†run usually between 10 and 14 miles.¬† These past couple of weeks my long runs were not under normal conditions for this time of year.¬† On Labor Day, I ran with my friend, Kari, around Lake Natoma in Folsom.¬† It was cloudy up where we lived and had been raining, but the weather reports looked promising for a great run.¬† Well . . . we got rained on, drenched actually.¬† It was such a refreshing run after so many warm sweaty runs this summer.¬† The temp was perfect for running in the rain!! Mike, my husband, not such a happy camper on his bike ride around the lake.¬† Biking in the rain does not equal the same amount of joy as running in the rain does!!! Sorry Mike . . . ūüė¶

My run last weekend was¬†around my favorite neighborhood lake – Sly Park Lake.¬† I feel so blessed that it is only 3 miles from my home.¬† Running that day wasn’t the best decision I have made, but at the moment it seemed like a good idea (maybe because Debora and I really wanted to run!!).¬† After¬†running a couple of miles we could taste smoke in our mouths.¬† We ran slower and could feel the lack of oxygen in our bodies due to the smoke, although it really didn’t look as bad as the pictures while we were running.¬† We felt like we were running at a higher elevation, our legs felt heavy and it just took more exertion to move.

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The first picture shows the side of the lake we ran first, taking a picture of the other side.¬† It really didn’t seem that bad, but when we got back to our starting point and looked back up the lake this is what we saw!! Yikes!! The smoke was just settling in.¬† No wonder we felt like we had no energy.¬† Hopefully . . . lesson learned. ūüôā

Tomorrow, Saturday, I am looking forward to an early nice long run with no rain and no smoke!!

I know I have mentioned in earlier posts that I have been MAF training.  Training using my maximum aerobic heart rate and not going above that.  It has been slow going this summer in the heat, but I believe my pace has increased as my body as become more aerobically fit.  I am really looking forward to cooler weather to see how that affects my heart rate and pace.

I have also stopped eating anything before my early morning runs and only drinking water with NUUN (electrolytes) during my runs and feeling great.  Before a run, I  always  had to get up extra early to eat my eggs and oatmeal.  I had been reading about running without nutrition as I was doing my MAF training and decided to give it a try.  I am loving it.  I always take along  sport beans or a gel, something just in case I feel the need.  This shows me that my body is/has learned to use fat efficiently as a fuel.

My one question right now, I have¬†2 half-marathons and a marathon¬†coming up and I will be running them faster and will need to¬†fuel my body – I’m just not sure how.¬†¬†As my¬†long runs get longer I will be experimenting with fuel.¬† Do I eat before my run?¬†Do I start without food? At what point¬†do I use a¬†fuel during my run? This is all very new to me and exciting.¬† I would love to hear from anyone who has done this before and what has worked for them.

I am thankful that I have been gifted with this amazing body that can run, that can be trained to be aerobically fit, that can fuel itself for a couple of hours all on its own!!!

Our bodies are a miracle!!! Thank you God for this gift!!

Patty ūüôā

 

 

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It was an early start that morning, meeting up with Kelly and Cara for the drive to Tiburon at 4:45am!!!

We could see the fog rolling over the hills, as we were driving down . . . hmmmm . . . how far inland was the fog?!!!

We got down to Tiburon, parked, and waited for the ferry to take us across to Angel Island.  There were 434 people racing Р336 ran the 12k, once around the island and 98 ran the 25k.  We were looking forward to cool temps after so many hot summer runs, but we actually were freezing, teeth-chattering, hands-shaking cold!!! Brrrrr . . .

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Me, Kelly, and Cara . . . freezing!!!

The race started around 9:30 after two loads of people were brought across the bay by ferry.  I was looking forward to my first trail race and getting warm!!!

Off we went up . . . up . . . up . . . a little down . . . up  . . . up . . . . around . . . down . . . down . . . down  . . .  turn around and repeat!!!

The fog was burning off slowly, but surely.  I had decisions to make Рwas I running by MAF or running a race? With so much steady uphill and my heart rate already over 136, I made the decision to just run and enjoy.  I did keep an eye on my heart rate, but not trying to keep it at my MAF rate, which would be 126.  I ran the race between 136 and 150.  I felt great, the temperature was perfect, and the elevation decrease a bonus.

It was definitely different running single file on a trail.¬† At times the trail would widen, but mostly single file.¬† I tried to be aware when others wanted to pass me and I would run as far right as possible or at times I just slowed and moved off the trail.¬† I found that I just had to run and let others work around me.¬† What became even more hectic for me was when there were runners behind me and the 25k’s running back up for the second time around passing me, as well as random hikers here and there.

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Golden Gate Bridge

The views were amazing!! I didn’t take pictures the first time around.¬†¬†The second time around¬†it was pretty much just me and the trail and I loved it!! There were people a ways in front of me and a ways in back of me. ¬†I didn’t feel any pressure.¬† I could just run my race in God’s amazing creation!!

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Looking toward SF with Alcatraz in-between

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Golden Gate Bridge, again!

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Looking down into the bay and Tiburon

I loved running down the final long hill!!¬†¬† It’s kind of like being a kid again . . .¬†running free¬†. . . filled with¬†joy!!¬†¬†At the same time, watching carefully all those rocks in the trail because I’m not a kid again and I didn’t want to fall . . .

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And . . . I finished!!

It was a total climb of about 2000 feet!!! My quads and calves were talking to me when all was said and done.

My time was 2:56, which is a PR for me, as this was my first 25k!!

I came in 2nd for my age group!! Okay . . . I must confess . . . there were only two in my age group!!! ūüôā

Would I do this again? Absolutely!!! I loved it!!!!

I wasn’t sore on the days following the race, which helped me to see that I could have given more.¬† Good information for next time.

What’s next? I have two half marathons coming up in October and tonight I printed out blank calendar sheets for laying out my marathon training!! I’m getting excited, overwhelmed, nervous, excited, ‘what-the-heck-did-I-sign-myself-up-for’ – I will just say, a myriad of feelings flow through me at any moment of my thinking process for the upcoming CIM in December.

When this happens, I just need to sit quietly with a great God, who is the one that gave me this body and the desire to run.  I pray I can learn more and more how to rest in Him and trust Him for all I will need to do in this journey of running and in this journey of life.  There are so many lessons to be learned in both . . . they go hand-in-hand.

Thankful . . .

Patty ūüôā

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When one is MAF training, which equals SLOW especially in heat, it is a gift to run at a lower elevation and in a nice overcast 56 degree temp!! A gift!!!

But . . . the biggest gift of going to San Francisco was to celebrate our 38th wedding anniversary!!

We each had a day that we planned what we wanted to do.¬† Obviously, if you know me, running was a must to be included in my day of choice.¬† ūüôā

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It began with a lovely windy walk across the Golden Gate Bridge.  Having come from 101 degree temps it was delightful!!!

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Once across we headed to Crissy Field and I ran and ran!!

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I ran from the Warming Huts to the Marina and back several times

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It was a gift to run in such cool temps, which kept my heart rate lower, which allowed me to run a quicker pace – a pace I missed running!!!

The views were refreshingly beautiful, as I ran my heart out!! There was a bit of a headwind running back in the direction of the bridge, which caused my pace to slow, as my heart rate increased.  I was too happy to care.  I was running in San Francisco, a location I had dreamed of running for quite some time.  I ran four heavenly miles enjoying the people, the scenery, my heart rate, my pace, the fact that God has gifted us with these amazingly made bodies that can run, thankful for the 38 years with Mike and looking forward to many more. 

The next day was Mike’s day.¬† He picked Point Reyes and a lovely hike out to the ocean.¬† Perfect choice!!! Again, very nice weather,¬† overcast, but not foggy!!!

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Ooops!! Yes, this was his day, but it was so beautiful and I just ran for a moment . . . in such lush surroundings, just for a moment . . . ūüôā

It was a wonderful relaxing, yet exercising-in-some-way-each-day getaway for Mike and I.  So thankful . . .

Good news to report on my running scene . . .

I ran 4 days this week, done correctly.¬†Are you reading this, Jenna, done correctly!! ūüôā¬†

I ran on Monday,¬†shorter run on Tuesday, rest on Wednesday, run on Thursday, rest on Friday, and long run around Lake Natoma today – all without ‘issue’ (Runner’s Ischemia)!!! That’s worthy of a celebration!!!¬† It looks like four days of training¬†per week will make¬†running the¬†CIM not only¬†doable, but¬†enjoyable and will result in me¬†having a blast running my first marathon.¬† Can you see that I’m¬†giving myself a pep talk,¬†as I¬†write here.¬† ūüôā

My next race is coming up on August 3rd. 

It is a 25K trail race around Angel Island (run around it twice).¬† I am looking forward to running down at a lower elevation again in cooler temps with great company.¬† It’s an adventure!!!

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See Angel Island in the distance . . . do you notice any hills?!!!

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Just one more pic of one of my favorite places.

Again, I end this with a thankful heart to a great God, who has always been with me every step of my life whether I acknowledged Him or not.  He has been faithful, oh so faithful!

Patty ūüôā

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This week has been a great week of running . . . although, in very hot temps.

I ran 8 miles on Monday morning with a young friend, who runs track in school.¬† She is used to shorter –¬†faster runs.¬† This was a stretch for her running a¬†longer – slower¬†run.¬† I am still MAF¬†training –¬†using my heart rate, keeping it aerobic, which means slow and even slower in hot weather running.¬† She did great and was fun company.¬†

This week, I was going to try 2 runs on consecutive days, a first for me in over a month.¬† I ran 4 slow miles on Tuesday and felt great with no issue with Runner’s Ischemia.¬† Yay!!! It was a beyond happiness moment for me.

Don’t judge me on what I am about to tell you, I already received a scolding from Jenna, my daughter!!!

I was supposed to wait and not run until Thursday, but I had an opportunity and the only opportunity to run with my running friend, Cara, on Wednesday.¬† Due to our schedules, we haven’t been able to run together for a couple of weeks and I really missed running with her and wanted to hear all about her husband’s Western States run. ¬†(BTW – He did amazing!!!)¬†

Totally logical, right?!!?!!

Well . . . at the moment it was totally worth it.  We ran 6.6 very warm miles with my heart rate monitor not working correctly.  It was reading way too low for the temp and the hills we were running.  I had to go by feel.  I felt great the whole run and thoroughly enjoyed my time with Cara. 

It wasn’t until I got back to the office that I had an issue with Runner’s Ischemia.¬† ūüė¶

I spiraled downward from my euphoria of the previous day.¬† It had been over a month since this had happened.¬† I had to work through the emotions of ‘why can’t my body handle running like other’s can?’

I inwardly knew I was pushing it, but went ahead anyway. 

Part of me really felt by lowering my heart rate that would solve my ‘issue’.¬†

 I could blame it on the heat, or maybe I was running faster since my heart rate monitor was reading incorrectly . . . but bottom-line it was my own doing . . . my plan had been two consecutive days, not three.

I’ve kicked myself around enough . . . it’s time to get up and get over it . . . I made a mistake, but running goes on . . . it is not the end of my running world, it is a lesson learned . . . (hopefully!!)

If I want to be a runner, a happy runner, with enjoyable runs I need to continue steadily moving forward . . . wisely!!!

Just like my walk with God . . . it’s a steady moving forward with many ups and downs, but moving forward . . . always learning . . . failing at times . . . not liking circumstances at times . . . but always moving forward in God’s strength, His love, His grace, His guidance.¬† I am very thankful that He never gives up on me and enables me to get up and over the next hill in my walk of life.

Sooooo . . . today, Saturday, I just finished a beautiful, cooler temp run (since I went at 6:30am) around my favorite lake trail.

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Me and Debora on Em’s Bench

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Beautiful View from Em’s Bench

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One of my favorite sections of this trail.

Today, I ran in cooler temps, with a dear friend, with no ‘issue’.¬† I¬† will¬†NOT run tomorrow.¬† Next week I am only running on Monday and Tuesday.¬†

Running is an adventure, much like my walk with God.¬† I’m thankful He is in the midst of it all!!! He gives me the strength I need to do all things and hang in there.

Very thankful!!

Patty ūüôā

 

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I have been running using my heart rate as my guide for about a month now.  One word . . . SLOW!!!!!

After my diagnosis of Runner’s Ischemia I started running two days a week on non-consecutive days –¬† two weeks being¬†free of any ‘issue.’¬† I then upped the running to three days a week on non-consecutive days¬†with no problems.¬† My mileage was usually 8 – 10 miles a ¬†run.¬† I figured if I couldn’t run everyday I was going to get the most out of each run. ūüėČ

I ride my bicycle¬†and lift weights¬†on non-running days.¬† I’m loving the cross training!! It brings about a great balance to running, a much-needed balance.¬† I’m glad to get that balance back.

Along with running on non-consecutive days I started¬† MAF training¬†– essentially figuring out my aerobic heart rate using Phil Maffetone’s¬†formula of 18o minus your age, plus or minus¬†5-10 depending on your health and fitness level, the goal being that as one trains with their aerobic heart rate their body will learn to use fat as fuel and their pace will increase as their body becomes more efficient.¬† I started this training after reading this article on Miss Zippy’s Blog.¬† I read it after my diagnosis and I was ready to try anything to keep running – even running slower!!!

I took 180 minus 59 (I’m not there yet!!! But . . . almost!!) and added 5 extra for my fitness level.¬† This gave me an approximate aerobic heart rate of 126 bpm.¬† I was used to running between 134-145ish and sometimes higher.¬†My first run using 126 was agonizingly slow . . . . I had to walk at times to keep my heart rate at 126 or lower . . . so SLOW.¬† My first run was 2 minutes per mile slower.¬† Mentally, I had to let that go.¬† I had to let my ‘natural to me’ running pace¬†go – the pace I was comfortable with.¬† I learned that on warmer days my heart rate was higher just from the temperature and I had to go even SLOWER . . . On cooler days it has been amazing how much faster I can run at the same heart rate.

SUMMER = SLOW (for the moment, right?!?!)

It has been a month since I have been running according to my heart rate.  I have grown to appreciate it.  I can actually go farther on my runs and still feel great without as much fuel and without feeling exhausted after my run.  On June 6th, I ran 10 miles and my average pace was 11:48 min/mile, where before MAF training my average on the same run was 10 min/mile.  I was going to check how my training was going yesterday by running the same run, but it was so much warmer in the morning and my average pace was 12:17 min/mile with more walking involved just to keep my heart rate down.  I will have to wait until it is cooler or I go earlier in the morning to get a true test.

Once I got over myself and running slower, I have really come to appreciate it.¬† I have had¬†NO¬†issues with Runner’s Ischemia and I credit¬† running by heart rate and not running on consecutive days for that.¬†I have also been hydrating¬†better¬†the days before a run and after. I am so thankful!!

I am also thankful that I run with friends who are willing to continue to run with me in my slowness and sometimes even walking.

Since this has been working so well, next week I plan on adding one more run on a consecutive day . . . yikes!!! It will be a shorter run between 3-4 miles, but at my aerobic heart rate.¬† I plan on running long on Monday, shorter on Tuesday, rest on Wednesday, long on Thursday, rest on Friday, and long on Saturday.¬† If this works without ‘issue’ I will do the happy dance.¬† I will feel like the training for my first marathon in December will be possible and be fun!!!

With the warmer weather this is becoming my go to trail, being it is a bit higher in elevation and has great tree coverage providing much needed shade.

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Sly Park Lake – 3 miles from my house – blessed!!!!

I hope you are enjoying your summer and moving in any form that you choose.¬† Make sure to get out there and do something!!!¬†In the heat, that means earlier or later, but worth it!!! ūüôā

Thankful to a great God for His faithfulness in all areas of my life!!

Patty ūüôā

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