Sunday, February 21, 2016

Big Sur Marathon Training--Week 3

Last week's recap ended after that long run in the polar vortex. That brutal 12 miler on Sunday really wrecked me, and I was as sore the next day as I have ever been after a marathon! Anyways, I did a lot of foam rolling, and by Tuesday, was ready to hit the road again. Here's the recap of my week.

Big Sur Marathon Training Week 3

Monday: Scheduled rest day

Tuesday: I had a 6 miler on the plan. It was still pretty cold but the sun was shining and I wanted to catch the sunrise. These winter sunrises have been spectacular! This was not a bad run at all, and I even stopped to do a side plank. Because there's always time to strike a pose. 6.25m/8:50m/m
Snowy Side Plank
snowy side plank
Wednesday: It was sunny and 32 and I made the decision to take my speedwork to the road. My treadmill is not calibrated correctly, and my treadmill mile splits have been messing with my head. I know, mind over matter, right? But I really wanted to go outside. So I drove over to the retention pond with the 2 mile loop where I did all my speedwork training for my last 2 marathons. Unfortunately, the park district didn't plow the path from Tuesday's snow, and I didn't think it would be safe for me to run fast there. Disappointed, I headed back to my neighborhood, and made the decision to run on the streets around the big park where I take all those running selfies. I had mile splits x5 to do, and away I went. When I took off my hamstrings both gave me a little twinge, as if to say, hey, WTF do you think you are doing? But they cooperated, and even though the people who live on those streets probably thought I was a freaking lunatic, I got it done and then some. 6 loops around took me back to my car and what I saw on the Garmin astonished me: 8:04, 7:55, 8:02, 7:59, 7:53. You betcha. And now I have a new place to do my speedwork.

Speed work--Big Sur Marathon Training Week 3
Boom! Don't mess with me! 
After that I went to yoga. The theme was twisting, and naturally, we did a lot of twisting poses. I was really stiff at first, but it was good medicine after running like I did. My instructor introduced a pose which was new to me. It's called Brigid's Cross. I could not find a picture of this one anywhere! I can only describe this pose like a reclined revolved triangle on the mat, a pose which is a challenge for me standing up! It was tough. I felt really good after class though. 

Thursday I rode an hour on the bike. I found an cycling interval video on YouTube made by CTXC. Their videos are pretty good, except that for the majority of this video I "rode" behind a guy in white shorts again. Ugh! He did have a black panel that was strategically placed, so I should be grateful for that, right? After I finished, I sat in hero's pose to stretch out my quads. Still feeling twisty from yesterday, I threw in a twist. I hoped to twist that image of the guy's white bike shorts out of my brain. Oh, and I also needed to loosen up for my workout with Becky. 
Twisted hero's pose
Twisted hero's pose
After that, I went to see Becky. This was a drop down week for me, meaning lower weights. But higher reps, naturally. I did cleans into front squats and deadlifts again. Then she put a resistance band around my waist and my knees and had me squat onto a bench while she pulled on the resistance band. Hello hamstrings!
squats with resistance bands
Squats with resistance bands
Friday was another scheduled rest day.

Saturday was predicted to be sunny and warm! The winds, which were hurricane-like on Friday, were down to a gentle breeze. I was out early to get my run in before I had to go to work. It was 48 degrees and I caught a beautiful sunrise. I also caught some speed. Hello, old friend! I'm glad to have you back again. 5.52m/8:27m/m

Sunrise run!
This run made me so happy!

Sunday I had 8 miles on the plan. The weather conditions were so much better than last Sunday's--it was 37F, no wind, but overcast. I decided to run to the retention pond. I started out fairly quickly and tried to reign it in, but my legs wouldn't have it. My foot felt good, so I went with it. I finished up at my house with a huge smile on my face! This was a quick one! 8.42m/8:34m/m.
Mid run triangle pose
Mid-run triangle pose
Mantra for the week: "Trust the process".

No kidding.

Overall, I'm really pleased with the week and my progress. Although I'm not running Big Sur for time, I'm happy to know that I can still knock out some fast mile splits. I had a slow start to 2016, and I was worried that the inevitable slowing down with age was starting to happen. Not yet. Whew. 

I really have to credit my coach--I have to believe that all this hard work she makes me do is paying off once again on the road. I do trust the process because this has happened every damn time we do a strength cycle. Hard work pays off.

Now, if I could just get that PF to go away, things would be darned near perfect. Is that too much to ask? While it's not any better, it sure isn't any worse, and for that, I am grateful.

How was your week? Any successes or achievements? Is the weather getting more tolerable by you?

I want to welcome everyone from Kristen's Blog Hop! Today's my showcase day, and I'm excited to share my training log with you. This is what it's all about for me. Running is my metaphor for life. Work hard, dream big. And never ever give up.

I'm also linking up this post with Holly and Tricia for the Weekly Wrap! As always, they are the hostessses with the mostest! Check out what everyone else has been doing. 






134 comments :

  1. Sounds like a great week! I am loving the sunrises lately too. I haven't done speed work in so long, I think my legs would take a while to figure out what was happening! I think I would much rather do speed work on the roads, especially as I am just getting back into it.

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    1. Oh, mine were like, hello? but then they remembered what they were supposed to do! It was kind of funny!

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  2. You had a great week ! You should be proud. I would love to work with a coach, that is one of the things I want to look into further down the road.
    As usual your pictures are great !

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    1. I feel like everything is falling into place! Fingers and toes crossed....

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  3. I think spring is on its way!! Hooray for those awesome splits and great pace!!!

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    1. The air had that smell of spring, even tho it was in the 30s today. Yay!

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  4. I'll say you can knock out some fast miles! Nice work! I know what you mean about preferring to be outside for speedwork. I was lazy about finding somewhere to run last year so I did it all on my treadmill. But now I have three different tracks to visit and I prefer speed intervals on the track because now I have a pretty good FEEL for 7:40 and 7:20 and 8:10 paces. Hope the cold weather has left for good!

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    1. I need to be moving forward for my speedwork. The treadmill just doesn't do it for me. Praying that this week's storm system stays south. I've got some hills to conquer!

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  5. Man, your speed looks freakin' awesome! I'm glad you had some nice weather to run in this week. I haven't been riding my bike trainer. It seems so uncomfortable and it's INSIDE. I think it's time to hit the streets again. Your half marathon is coming up soon. Are you getting excited to go to Sarasota? Thanks for linking with us, Wendy.

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    1. I'm so ready to take my bike outside. Mother Nature is fickle tho--she's teasing us with snow in the middle of the week. And yes, I'm SO excited to go to Sarasota. I cannot wait!

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  6. I am amazed that you can run so much with your PF! I couldn't run at all when I was really having it. Looks like a great week for you.

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    1. I'm working hard at keeping it under control Fingers crossed that it stays there.

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  7. Our training is really similar..I also had mile repeats on my schedule! Way to go girl, and your pictures are awesome! Keep it up :)

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  8. Congrats on a strong week lady!! You are doing amazing!

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  9. What an awesome week :) Your speed work kicks butt! I tried that front hold squat today. I can only do the bar for now, but thank you for inspiration :) I am always trying to find things I can handle for my legs. I need to work with the bands again, it has been along time since I have done that.
    I love how happy your runs were this week :) Awesome!

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    1. That front squat is one tough mother! I'm getting more comfortable with the cleans and the hold. It's probably the hardest thing she's had me do.

      Thanks for all the good wishes. It was a good week. Hoping to see you back on the road soon!

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  10. Wow, what a great week! I am struggling to hold on to my mojo. I haven't let go yet, but ....

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    1. This was my breakthrough week. I needed it to know that I can do this marathon! Don't let go. You never know what's around the corner!

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  11. Wow! Your splits were awesome! I’m glad your long run went well. That’s always encouraging! New Orleans sounds like a lot of fun! I wish I was closer. I want to run a Rock and Roll race so bad!!

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    1. I'm running Big Sur! Altho New Orleans sounds like a lot of fun, too...

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  12. Great times. I wish I could post those sort of times. I love all your running selfies. I wish I could do those

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    1. I'm happy that I still can run like that. I keep thinking that it's going to come to an end...I'm so so grateful it hasn't.

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  13. Dang! As much as I envy your speed, I do not envy the grueling strength work you're doing to make those speeds possible! And, as you know, it's just as great witnessing OTHERS' successes as much as our own ;-) Great job!!!

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    1. Absolutely--I love watching everyone crush their goals. Now keep in mind, I'd never do that strength work if it weren't for my fear of burpees...

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  14. You had an amazing week! I am so happy you are doing so well whatever your doing for your PF is working! Ok I got a question when you had mile splits x5. Are you relying on your watch to tell you when the mile is up or do you know where it is on your route? I need to incorporate speed work I know I do. I'm so reluctant cause I don't want to put in the hard effort you do. Maybe a little effort will equal a little faster? :)

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    1. I use my Garmin to monitor my distance. This week was a new route and I had no idea where one mile would come up--so I occasionally look down at my wrist.

      It is the hard truth--speedwork will make you faster. I actually like speedwork, but I'm a little weird like that. But if you put in the time, you will reap the benefits.

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  15. Sounds like a fantastic week! Your paces are awesome!! Love your pics too!

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  16. BOOM!!! Great work mama and yes, trusting the process can be so very hard but, most of the time it does pay off! My coach says to me: "You can try everything and then eventually do what your coach says." Yep. Beautiful pictures once again too. Great week!!

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    1. I'm really happy that it is all coming back together! Yes!

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  17. Getting in some fast splits always feels amazing! I like winter running because I tend to be a little faster I think. :) My big accomplishment for the week was doing a meager 1 mile of run-walk'ing without much knee pain. Baby steps! I'm hoping I'm on my way back to running for real this time. -C

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    1. I think the cooler weather is definitely conducive to faster running! Well, let's just say moderately cool weather--that polar blast last weekend was a torture treatment! I hope you're on your way back too.

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  18. That picture of you post run with the sun in the background is just perfect. I always think seeing the sun makes things feel better, but in your case, it seems like it was just the icing on the cake after an incredible run.

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  19. I'm always so impressed with workout selfies, and yours are great! Do you use a timer or do you have someone take them for you?

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    1. I use the timer on my iPhone, and I play with various filters. It's been a lot of fun!

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  20. I think sometimes when we take the time pressure off of ourselves that's when we shine. Some of us just shine a little brighter than others. :)

    I have done speedwork in my neighborhood a lot of times & yes, I'm sure if anyone is home (besides the barking dogs) and sees me, they're really wondering what the heck that crazy chick in the skirt is doing!

    Saturday was beautiful here, but that's the day we had hurricane winds and Darlene was fighting a cold & I was resting my ankle. Yesterday wasn't as pretty, but actually good running weather.

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    1. I was glad Friday was my rest day--it was so warm but I wouldn't have done well with those winds! Crazy weather...it's supposed to snow later this week.

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  21. Great training and great 8 miler with a really good pace. That must have felt great. Such a confident booster! Love the pic of the side plank in the Winter! WTG, Wendy!

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    1. Yesterday's run really felt great, and my foot barely hurt after or today! Yep, confidence booster!

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  22. AWESOME mile splits, Wendy!!! You had a wonderful week.

    The best part of my week was a successful race pace run. Race pace runs scare me sooooo bad.

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    1. I love race pace runs! It's like dress rehearsal for the big show. Minus the nerves...

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  23. Look at those killer splits!!! Congrats!!! Glad you had a good week.

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    1. Me too! It's nice when the race training falls into place. I hope things continue like this.

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  24. Great week. YOu are doing great.Can't wait to hear how you like Sarasota.

    We have 60 degree weather in Sat but I was sick. I ran 12 miles on Sunday instead. Cloudy and not as warm but I actually felt better after a run.

    Love that!

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    1. I hope it's not hot for Sarasota. My last Florida half was a steambath. But I'm prepared for it. It's just a "training" run, after all!

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  25. looks like you had a pretty awesome week! and some great splits wtg! also your photos are awesome!

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  26. I start half marathon training today and I just can't get out there in the cold (and it's not even that cold in MD right now)! This has helped motivate me :-)

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    1. I absolutely loathe running on the treadmill. I will do it if I have to, but I try to run outside as much as possible!

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  27. I've been itching to be outside more and more. I don't mind the treadmill, but even during the week when I get home, mentally I want to do my run outside and take a break from the treadmill.

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    1. Oh, I mind the treadmill...but I'm glad the weather is moderating. It makes it a little more pleasant out there.

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  28. Nice going on a fabulous week. So glad you found your speed groove and you are happy about that!

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    1. Just trying to keep old age at bay... :p

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  29. Sounds like a great week of training! That Becky knows her stuff!!! She's helping you keep that age related slow down at bay for sure!! The weather here was glorious this weekend. But it's supposed to get really crappy mid week. They're calling for some kind of winter storm. Boo.

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    1. Yep, the longer I work with her, the more appreciate her. Love the results I'm getting!

      We're supposed to get snow on Wednesday. Boo!

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  30. Sounds like you had a great training week! I love the photo of you in front of the sun from your Saturday run :)

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    1. Thanks! Sometimes I catch it just right..

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  31. That circle band you have just below your knees is my favorite thing ever. Most runners just don't have much lateral strength and that's the best way I've found to build some. Nice week!

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    1. It's a work in progress. I was humbled in yoga this morning. Damn warrior 3 pose--it's my nemesis!

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  32. I don't think you have to worry about slowing down- you're super speedy! I wish I was that fast! I live in Florida so we've had a pretty mild winter with a few chilly days. I've been loving the weather in the 50s and 60s though- it's a nice change from the 90s! This week I didn't run much but I did the Princess Half on Sunday, so I think I made up for my lack of weekly training with my 13.1 on Sunday! ;-)

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    1. Congrats on the Princess Half! My FB feed was filled with princesses. Looks like it was so much fun!

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  33. Looks like a really good week! Good luck at Big Sur!

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  34. Whoa what a killer training week you had! I'd love to hit some mile splits like those :)

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  35. It sounds like, despite everything, you had a great week of training. Good luck at Big Sur I've heard nothing but good things about the race!

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  36. Great week! This weekend's weather was definitely a gift. Glad you got to enjoy it and that your body thanked you with some fast paces.

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    1. The weather was amazing. And here comes the snow!

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  37. I didn't have such a great week. I was seriously lacking motivation, so I just let myself take a few days off and now I'm back at it with a vengeance!

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    1. Sometimes a little time off is just the thing. You'll be back at it. You had all those races--sounds like your body is telling you something!

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  38. This week has been tough for me. I'm just about 32 weeks pregnant and I'm starting to literally slow down. It's frustrating because I've been so active up until now and I'd hate to spend the next 4 - 6 weeks sitting on the couch so here's hoping it's just a fluke!
    I am impressed with your training log. I am inspired by anyone that has run a full marathon. As much as I love to run I have to say a full isn't on my bucket list, although who knows? Maybe down the line when I'm done having babies!
    I also have to say I love that you are strength training and cross training regularly. So many runnings neglect their strength training and it's such a key piece of being an effective runner!
    Keep up the good work!!

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    1. I said I'd never run a full. But then my boys got big and I started to get serious about distance. So you never know.

      I'm impressed with anyone who runs during their pregnancy. I simply couldn't. I had zero energy. I did walk and continue strength training, tho. Hang in there..you're at mile 20 aka the wall..

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  39. your training and dedication amazes me! nice, solid week. I love working with my trainer during this cycle. I think it has helped me tremendously!

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    1. Isn't it great to have someone to push you? I just love it.

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  40. Another awesome week for you Wendy! Your times on your runs are impressive! Way to go!

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    1. This was a great week for me. I feel so much more confident!

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  41. Hard work does pay off- you are living it! You will love the weather in Florida my friend it was a gorgeous weekend! Impressive miles, you are an inspiration and take the best pictures!

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    1. I cannot wait for our meetup and race!

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  42. Hi Wendy!

    Thanks so much for your comments on my blog - here connecting with you from our spotlight days in the blog hop. I love your pictures in this post and just followed you on Instagram. Loving your feed! Super inspiring. Congrats on all your accomplishments, too. I'm not a runner, but have many friends who are, so I know the dedication and hard work it takes. Very inspirational! So happy to have connected with you through the hop!

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    1. Same here! I'm looking forward to following you!

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  43. You always have such beautiful pictures on your blog. Love it. I can't imagine running in those cold temps although when I was young and didn't live in Florida I did that every year. Have a great week!

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    1. And to think this winter has been "mild"! I'm heading to Florida in 3 weeks for a half. I cannot wait!

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  44. Great job and great pictures! I am also training for the Big Sur marathon. Coming back from an injury (ITBS) in October, my goal is just to get to the start line healthy!

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    1. oooooh! We have to meet up! Hoping for a #werunsocial meetup for Big Sur. I'm battling PF, so my goal is also to get to the start line healthy. #solesisters

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  45. What a great week of training! Mile repeats are always so tough and even at the peak of training my legs never want to do them. Your splits for those are awesome. I'm glad to see that the weather is warming up for you!

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    1. I was so happy with that speedwork! It was a huge confidence booster and I'm glad to know it's still in me!

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  46. Glad you had a great week! I'm coming up on 52 - we're not getting older, we're getting better!

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  47. Your BOOM picture is the cutest ever! You are going to KILLL Big Sur!

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    1. I was just so excited after that workout! What can I say?

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  48. Awesome job last week in training, way to go with the speedwork, who cares what others think right, I doubt they were thinking lunatic, they were probably thinking they are jealous you got out there to run!

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  49. Fantastic week of training, especially your speedwork session! Great job being resourceful and finding a place to get your mile repeats in without having to resort to the treadmill. Running fast outside during the winter months is no joke!

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    1. But running outside in the winter is always preferable to the treadmill!

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  50. Wow - what a fantastic week! And your pictures - STUNNING!!! It sounds like the weather is warming up too - win, win, win!!

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  51. I'm curious about the pose. Can you post a picture or send me one? I can't imagine a reclining triangle - are your legs in the air? Can't wait to hear about Big Sur!!

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    1. I've got to re-enact this pose. I wish I could find a picture!

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  52. Hello from the blog hop! It looks like you had an awesome week of workouts. Congrats on getting to be speedy out in the cold! It's such an awesome feeling when you hit speeds you weren't expecting :)

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    1. Oh you know it! I've been dragging up until now. Suddenly, my legs have pressed the gas pedal. Love it.

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  53. AWESOME WEEK!!!

    Look at your back muscles....get it girl!!!

    Great runs and yoga poses!

    That sunrise....that is a post card for sure!!

    tamieka@fitballngrunningmom

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    1. It was a great great week! Hoping this momentum just keeps flowing!

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  54. That is a stellar week. You look awesome too! I think I need to give yoga another try!!

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  55. Looks like you had a great week! I love the way you planked in the snow! That's dedication :)

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    1. The snow makes for some great pictures!

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  56. You are crushing!!!! So many great runs! I love when you get in that speedwork groove! I hope the PF stays at bay!

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    1. I hope the PF stays at bay as well. I keep working on it.

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  57. Great job==those are such awesome times! I love your pictures too! :]

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  58. Great runs! Love your "running is a metaphor of life"

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  59. OMG, your pictures!!! You look SO strong and fierce! Your biceps are bulging through your sleeves in that "don't mess with me" photo. Look at your ripped back muscles in that "squats with resistance bands" photo. Love the side plank pose with the winter backdrop, too! All of your strength training is paying ENORMOUS dividends, Wendy. You are a powerhouse!

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    1. You just made my day! I love what my coach has done for me. Best investment ever.

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  60. Strength training does pay off! Been doing this strength streak since the start of Feb but haven't focused on heavy weight training (which I need to). I admire your commitment. Good to hear the PF hasn't been acting so much. Cheers to a great week! Here in San Diego, it feels like spring already and loving it.

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    1. It really helps to have a coach to keep me accountable. And a blog...

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  61. Grrr to your PF, I hope you feel better soon! Your workouts are great - I need to start using the resistance bands again, they are such a great help. Those white shorts though...glad I didn't witness that, ugh!

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    1. White shorts and endurance just don't mix! :p

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  62. Amazing week, you are really knocking out those workouts and so freaking dedicated.

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  63. Awesome week! I think about people like you when I am struggling and want to give up in the middle of a workout. Thanks for being an inspiration!

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  64. Awesome week Wendy! Great runs and great pictures!!! Hope you're having a great week this week. xo

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  65. I love your mantra for the week! I'm trying to live it.

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  66. Nice week of training and awesome job on your speed work! I love that mantra for the week. Definitely something I have to remind myself from time to time especially while tapering for a marathon. We had spring like weather this past weekend. I'm hoping we don't have many more cold snaps with Spring on its way.

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    1. Right there with you! We got a little snow yesterday, but it supposed to warm right back up!

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  67. I seriously wish I had a coach like yours!! I love that she challenges you so much with your strength training!! I've been doing a lot of strength training on my own at home. I bought a 15, 20, 25 pound dumbbells. Not anywhere near what you are lifting, but at least it something!!

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    1. The lifting she has me do is really focused to the glutes and hamstrings. We're done with that now, so look for more HIIT and plyometrics.

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