Sunday, August 30, 2015

Marathon Training Week 6: Don't Stop Believin'

I may have been guilty of singing along while on the run...just sayin'....
So after my epic struggle to get my runs done last week, I took Monday to regroup. I was off work, and I spent some time catching up on the blogs. After reading a few, I soon learned that I wasn't alone in my struggles last week. There were a lot of defeated runners. And some with answers. As it turns out, this is all part of the process:

Ashley at Running With Skissors wrote a post titled "The Battle Between I CAN'T and I CAN". She said it, I didn't, so no burpees were involved. Just some wisdom and a "doh" knock to the forehead for me. Hello, marathon training!

Laura at This Runner's Recipes wrote about Cumulative Fatigue. I had never heard of this before, but apparently bodybuilders use this concept all the time. As do devotees of the Hanson Training Method. And, apparently, my coach. Mile 20? Bring it on....

So, with all that in mind, how did week 6 go down?

Monday was a scheduled rest day. I decided to take another yoga class. Best.Idea.Ever. Before class, the instructor, Megan, talked a lot about staying in the present moment. She told us that a person has between 50,000 and 80,000 random thoughts per day, and that 80% of those thoughts are negative. This was an aha moment for me! I have been working hard on staying positive even when I'm struggling with a run. For this yoga class, I set an intention to stay present. Staying focused is not an easy process for me, particularly in a balance pose. We did a few of them today. She also did some great calf, achilles, and foot stretches. My heel was so much happier at the end of this class.

King dancer. Natarajasana. Quad stretch. Balance. Day 1 of #7daystretch #liveinprana
Tuesday: I had a 6 miler on the plan. At marathon pace. When I headed out, the temperature was a runner's dream...60 degrees. And I took full advantage of it on light legs. I'm participating in a yoga challenge this week, Prana's #7daystretch, and I felt so good that I stopped at mile 4 to do upward bow. Yep. It was one of those runs that made start to believe...

Upward facing bow. Day 2 of #7daystretch. The cement was really hard, btw.
Wednesday: I do yoga on Wednesdays, but I had to go into work early for a meeting, and so I couldn't make it to the studio for a class. No worries, since I did 3 yoga classes in the past week. I pulled out one of my favorite videos, SeaWheeze2014, and worked out all the kinks.

Trikonasana. Day 3 #7day yoga challenge. Inspired by that triangular shaped tree behind me. Cheesy, right?
Thursday: I had speedwork, 2 mile repeats x3, on the plan. I hadn't done these since last summer, and as always, I wasn't quite sure how to pace my first outing with this distance. I decided to shoot for an 8:10/mile pace and see what happened. I couldn't have been happier with the outcome. Again, the temperature was a favorable 60 degrees when I started, and my legs felt light. First 2 mile split was 16:01. It started to warm up, but I still felt great, and the other two splits were 16:08 and an astonishing 15:58 for the last. Clearly, I was thrilled. I so needed this to go well, and I couldn't have been happier. Oh and by the way...no heel pain. At all. That's a huge win! Oh, one more thing. I hit 800 miles for the year! That made me jump for joy! Really!


After that, I went to see Becky for CrossFit. She was all about the lunges today. Ouch. Two sets of 3 different lunges. First set was lunges carrying 20# kettlebells. Followed by GHD situps. Next set, I had my nemesis, that 50# so called "wreck bag" on my back. I never knew that the bag had a name until recently, but hey, if the shoe fits...anyways, Becky wanted me to "clean" the sack up to my shoulders, but I just couldn't do it. But I didn't tell her that I couldn't, for fear that she would make me do burpees! I was frustrated about my inability to clean the sack, but she told me that I could be creative, and I did get the sack up there, albeit awkwardly and very uncrossfit-like. I did lunges with the wreck bag on my shoulders. Followed by atomic situps. For my last 2 sets, I did lunges holding a plate overhead, followed by leg lifts. Holy hamstrings.

Me and the wreck bag. I was wrecked after this one.
At the end we did sidesteps and monster walks with the resistance band. Becky did them with me, which was kind of fun. She was thrilled about my speedwork, and once again reminded me:

Trust the Plan!

Friday: Rest day. I have to share that I was incredibly sore from Thursday's CrossFit session. As a matter of fact, the soreness progressed as that day went on. I'm lucky I have a job that keeps me on my feet because if I had to sit for any length of time, I would have gotten stuck in the chair. When I got home from work, I did foam rolling, which was nearly brought me to tears. It hurt like a mother... But I knew I had a 7 mile run on Saturday, and that wasn't going to happen if I didn't loosen up my muscles.

Saturday: I woke up to the sound of pouring rain, but I was committed to running my 7 mile virtual run. Becky had 5 miles on the plan, but I figured that 2 extra miles wasn't a big deal. I'll recap this run on Tuesday in a separate blog post, but I will share that I'm really glad I did that foam rolling the night before. I was still pretty sore, but managed to run it at marathon pace. My legs felt pretty good. But it never stopped raining, and I was soaked when I got home.

I was the only person at the pond today.
Sunday: Still sore, I was really happy to have a bike ride on the plan this week. Although it is done raining, the weather is still gloomy. The temp was about 68 degrees with 80% humidity. I rode out to the forest preserve for a 30 mile loop. Besides being sore, I also struggled a little bit with the humidity and decided not to push my pace. This was my "long run" and I would have done the same thing had I been running. There were a lot of runners on the bike paths this morning and I was a little annoyed by 2 groups that would not move over to let me pass until I repeated "on your left" quite forcefully (and somewhat rudely) multiple times. What the hell, people? I'm one of you... I wasn't feeling very zen-like, having to do that. But once I got past them and was able to open it up a bit, my mood lifted. I stopped to take my final #7daystretch pose, which was all about being zen.

I don't normally stop for yoga mudra in the middle of a ride, but there was plenty of inspiration along the path. 

So, as corny as it seems, I picked Journey's "Don't Stop Believin'" as my theme song for the week. Because I really felt like maybe things are starting to fall into place. It was a great week of training. I hit all my paces and my legs felt good. I'm excited again!


How was your week? Are things starting to make sense? Sticking to the plan? Ever had muscle soreness that gets worse as the day goes on? Has your foam roller ever made you cry?

I'm linking this post with HoHoRuns and MissSippiPiddlin for their weekly wrap!

93 comments:

  1. Very interesting statistic on the number of random thoughts and % that are negative. Good job with your training - you are doing so great with your plan and even though you're having those periodic negative thoughts you are truly doing an amazing job at consistently getting it done. I woke up today with muscles the most sore they've ever been post-race. Went to the swimming pool to try to loosen up but I'm finding my upper back and shoulders are still carrying a lot of tension and stiffness and knots. I may need to get Mr. Rumble Roller out for this occasion.

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    1. I too am the most sore I've been in a very long time! Funny how that happens! I need to get on the yoga mat this afternoon and stretch it all out.

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  2. I, too, have noticed lately that my thoughts are increasingly negative. And often unkind. That 80% statistic is astounding. I intend to do something about it in my own life.

    Our faculty-staff retreat on Friday was a wake-up call for me, both the keynote speech and the homily (given by the same priest) made me realize that I need to change my mindset. I'm trying to keep unkind words from slipping from my lips and also---even tougher---to banish the word "hate" whether it be directed at a person, object, or idea, from my vocabulary.

    Already I'm noticing a difference. Maybe that's why I had such a good run today, you think?

    Congratulations on a wonderful week of training. Sharing our stories, our ups and downs, our frustrations and successes, help us to realize not only that we are all in this together, but that our journeys are in many ways similar. And it's all a cycle, like life.

    Thank you for your wonderful post.

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    1. Thanks for sharing your journey with me. I've been more crabby lately, and I don't know if it's an overtraining thing or what it is. I'm working hard to adjust my attitude. That yoga class helped me reset my thinking.

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  3. This all sounds great....I love all the yoga pics...your cross fit pics always make me jealous....and you standing in the rain (particularly the one yesterday morning after your virtual run on your instagram)...love them. I had a pretty great week.... a few good runs. My yoga instructor Jake just got back into town and I sneaked in an extra yoga class with him yesterday....and I'm doing a couple extra yoga sessions this week instead of runs to make up for the time he was gone....and today...the virtual run:)

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    1. I'm doing a yoga challenge for September. I don't know if I'll be able to post them every day, but I'm going to try. The challenge is to make the pictures interesting!

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  4. I am glad you had a wonderful week of training! You had great speedwork and I am glad your heel is not bothering you at all. You take great post workout pictures too! I am so not creative when it comes to that... These days I am lucky if I snap a Garmin pic.

    My 4th grade chorus sang Don't Stop Believin' two years go... it always made me cry hearing them sing that! I am turning into such a sap!

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    1. Oh, just wait until you have kids. The tears come out of nowhere!

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    2. No children of my own in my future, but the longer I teach, the more sensitive I become. Though I am sure not as sensitive as it feels to be a mother.

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  5. OH MY WORD IT HAS MADE ME CRRRRRRRRYYYY.
    I need to get it back out and cry again.
    STAT.

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  6. Great week and a great song. That's an astounding stat on the negative thoughts, but probably very true. I need a lot of work on the mental training right now...this heat...blech. Your legs look amazing in your Crossfit pic. Here's to a great week of training. I'm excited I'm going to see you soon, Sista! Thanks for linking up with us today.

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    1. I was pretty shocked by that stat too. For me, it's true, but what about naturally happy by nature people?

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  7. Just hearing you say your legs felt light with so miles on them is great :) There's light at the end of a tunnel.
    I feel I have cumulative heat fatigue...I know that sounds crazy, but I have such a hard time recovering and i think my body's reaction a few weeks ago shows it. I do believe in cumulative fatigue. At some point your body will demand rest when it needs it. I guess that why we have drop back weeks :)
    I usually get sore the day after lifting, the second day is always worse for me! It amazing you push out marathon pace when you are sore like that.
    I had a non mover a few weeks ago, so aggravating... Seriously, people can be so selfish.

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    1. Ohh the heat has been tough to deal with. I think part of the reason last week's runs went so well is because I had those cooler mornings. There's no doubt that I run better when it's cooler.

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  8. You know I struggled last week too but not sure why. Things just bothered me more than usual. Look at you with those bad ass lunges!

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  9. Yes - trust the plan! My coach has been telling me to trust the process because I've been getting antsy with low mileage post injury. In the end, I listened to her and nailed my race/training run

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    1. I always do low mileage, so I was upset the week before at how bad I felt on all my runs. This week was much more affirming!

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  10. I love that picture of you at the pond! that's interesting about the number of thoughts and how many are negative. you're training seems to b going strong - very inspiring!

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    1. I feel much more optimistic after this past week.

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  11. Big props to you for getting out there despite being sore! It's probably better to get out there and move, but sore muscles usually just make me want to rest all day.

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    1. Oh trust me, the last thing I wanted to do was take those sore legs out in the pouring rain and run 7 miles. But a commitment is a commitment, right?

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  12. i love this, wendy. great week and yes, don't stop believing is a great song AND mantra. :)

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  13. You are doing awesome in your training! I love your upward facing bow pic for the #liveinprAna challenge!

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  14. Great week my friend! I'm glad you are believing again. Don't stop. Just let it flow.

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  15. That is the absolute perfect theme song! Don't stop!

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  16. Marathon training is rough and I am right there with you. I have been battling my long runs every week, but this is marathon training. I am glad you are believing again!

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  17. Hooray for a great week of training!!
    Last week was a battle for me, and I'm excited to start fresh this week.

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    1. Isn't it great to look at each week as a fresh start?

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  18. I don't focus on a workout or a week. I focus on the whole, and the whole gives me time and space to fail completely and pick myself back up. They say successful people are the ones who get "denied" over and over but keep going for it. Same with us. We can stumble over and over again, but as long we don't give up, we will be successful! Keep on believing!

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  19. Yeah, cumulative fatigue is absolutely what Hansons does. There is never a true recovery week. I'm pretty much always tired, but somehow my body is ok with it.

    Keep up the great work and TRUST THE PLAN! You got this.

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    1. I don't get recovery weeks with Becky, either, altho the long bike ride is a nice change of pace from pounding the pavement.

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  20. Yay! We can be friends! I love that song and whenever it comes on my playlist, I am ready to JAM! I am so jealous of all the bendy people in my IG feed! I need to go do more yoga!

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  21. That is a lot of random thoughts in a day! I am loving all of your yoga shots, I have slacked off on yoga lately and am starting to feel it. I am hoping now that the kids are back in school I can get back into yoga.

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    1. I do yoga all the time, even post run as a stretch. I couldn't run without it.

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  22. Sounds like you had a seriously GREAT week! Way to go! Love that you had the kind of workouts that get your mojo back in a big way :)

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  23. I think I've mentioned that not much makes me cry, so no, the foam roller doesn't. Good, stoic, peasant stock.

    But I have definitely had DOMs and it ain't fun.

    I have heard of cumulative fatigue, but maybe not by that actual phrase. But I've read the reason to hold back your pace on shorter runs at the beginning of a training cycle is just that -- it feels easy when you start, but those miles you rack up over a training cycle can cause a lot of fatigue. Am I making sense?

    Very glad to hear the heel is feeling better!

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    1. When they talk about cumulative fatigue, it's more about not having any down time, to train you to run on tired legs. This is supposedly the way to get runners past "the wall". And yes, I've been running on very tired and sore legs. I did this same training last year, and I never hit the wall in my marathon. I'm a believer.

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  24. I am so envious of all your week recap photos! I need to get better about taking them. Also I have never heard of cumulative fatigue and I'm fascinated!!! Thanks for sharing.

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    1. I thought it was really interesting, and makes total sense about my training!

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  25. Thank you so much for sharing my link! You had an absolutely killer week of training - you are going to rock Chicago! I think sometimes we need those rough weeks of training to teach us that we are more capable than we thought of pushing through - and then come those everything clicks weeks! And the fact that you can just bust out an upward bow in the middle of a marathon pace run is nothing short of amazing.

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    1. That was a great post! And I so needed that slap upside the head. Everything makes sense now. Great information.

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  26. You are doing so well! Definitely trust the plan! It will all come together at the end.

    This week was ok. Circumstances weren't the best, so we just navigated as best we could.

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    1. Ugh. I hate weeks like that. I hope this week is better!

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  27. I am getting BACK ON the plan like nothing has happened! LOL! I am not trying to make up these 2 sad weeks either I am holding my head up and moving on! Thanks for getting outside on Saturday- if I had not commited to that virtual race with you I don't know if I would have! Thanks my friend!

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    1. I know I wouldn't have done it if I hadn't committed either. Seriously, 7 miles in the pouring rain? WTH is wrong with me?

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  28. It's funny how things fall back into place if you stick with it. Great week of training. Jealous of your temperatures:)

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    1. Yeah, the weather was pretty nice last week. Now we're back in the blast furnace again!

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  29. Glad to hear your heel pain was gone! Awesome week, only a few more weeks until we're at the starting line! The excitement builds....

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    1. Seriously! I'm so glad I had a good week...I was feeling pretty low the week before. Funny what a few good runs will do for your confidence...

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  30. This week has been a bit of a mental roller coaster but still gangster with regards to my training. This weekend will be a bit different with the weather we are expecting! I can't wait to see you beastmode the CRAP out of this marathon. you are going to do so well!

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    1. If my heel behaves (message to heel, behave!), then I believe it will be awesome!

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  31. You are amazing. I am feeling tired reading about all your miles and your pace is fantastic. I am also jealous of your yoga poses. Glad your foot pain is gone. You are going to have a fantastic marathon experience. I can feel it.

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    1. The foot pain isn't completely gone...it comes and goes, but if I take the time to work it out, it really lessens nicely.

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  32. You had a tough week but pushed through it. Can not wait to read about the virtual run! I always find your cross-fit training interesting! I am curious how do you "clean" the sack up to your shoulders? I'm picturing me hoisting the 50# sack of horse feed on my shoulders. Humm maybe I should do lunges to the barn for added exercise! I am having doubts about my marathon training on only 3 days a week running so I looked at the Cumulative Fatigue post, Oh my, I see the concept but running 6 days a week I know my body could not do that. :( I'm still doing some research but I'd really like a training plan I thought I could do and believe in. I just do not "trust my plan" right now. I have the long runs but questioning if I shouldn't up my miles during the other 2 runs as well. I'll figure it out I hope! Thanks so much for linking up with us. I'm so jealous of Holly for getting to meet you in a few weeks. :)

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    1. I couldn't do 6 days/week running either. My old body would rebel. That's the beauty of this training--low miles and lots of cross training.

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  33. What a great week of training! And your chosen theme song sounds perfect! Despite wanting to take extra rest when your muscles are sore, its so important to keep pushing through with your training plan.

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    1. That has been the hardest part of my training, running on sore and tired legs. But it's all part of the plan to get me past mile 20! It worked last year!

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  34. The muscle soreness that gets worse has happened to me before, especially after strength training. The day after is not so bad but two days after weight training really sucks :(

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    1. You aren't kidding! I always feel it and I should know by now...

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  35. I so enjoy seeing you in action. Training gets tough if we stop believing. Who am I kidding? Life gets tough if we don't believe.

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    1. Truth! I know it's corny, but it's all I've got.

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  36. Thanks so much for pointing out that post about changing Can't to Can..I talked about that on my blog today. I need to really figure out how to not psych myself out. I know I have it in me, but I'm scared! Trust the plan...trust the plan :)

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    1. I'm scared too, Sue! What's that saying? If your dreams don't scare you, they aren't big enough? Yikes.

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  37. Ah yes, cumulative fatigue. I know it well and it makes some weeks of training feel sooooo hard. You are kicking butt though! Just check out all of the awesome training that you crushed!

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    1. This was a really great week. I feel so much more confident.

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  38. Sounds like you are rocking your training! Awesome job hitting your paces! Way to go!

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    1. Thanks! It helps when the temperatures are a little more reasonable, too...

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  39. You are definitely my hero for this post and your perseverance! I am having an off week currently after missing my 13 mile run on Saturday, but I've committed to doing it on Wednesday. This post has definitely given me a boost to let me know I can do just that! Best of luck on your training, and congrats on the 800 miles!!!

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    1. Yep, the week before really rocked my confidence, but I got it back this week!

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  40. Great job with your training this week!! I love your song choice...although now I will have that song stuck in my head all night, haha! :)

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  41. You look like a rockstar doing those lunges!!! Woo hoo!! Your training looks like it is going so well - congrats!!
    I wish I could stop in the middle of a run and do a backbend! #awesome

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  42. You are a rockstar. Wait for your posts, totally hooked now.

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  43. YES!!! For no heel pain! And I love your last pic - very zen. :)

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    1. And...it's back...I think the heel pain is going to haunt me throughout the rest of my training. At least it goes away when I run.

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  44. Great job battling the negative thoughts. No, the foam roller has never made me cry... but it has made me gasp/moan in pain. ;)

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  45. Nice job on your training! LOL at that someecard. I did mile repeats yesterday too and it really is so hard to know your pacing on that first one. I'm trying to change my negative mindset to postive but I am dreading my long run this week because of the HEAT and humidity this week. Ugh Idk how I'll do it!

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    1. I too am dreading my long run on Sunday for the same reason. I need to get in the right mindset. Stay positive. I can do it! We can do this!

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  46. It is weird but I am always having negative thought when it is running related but am usually positive about anything else. Nice job on your training this week. Have you tried the ROLL Recovery? I almost cried with that thing. I know once I am better that it won't hurt as much but in the meantime I'll use my regular roller.

    Love the song!!!

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    1. I haven't hear of that, but I think I need to check it out!

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