Saturday, March 22, 2014

Half Marathon Training

I am currently training for a half marathon.  This week I had to run a bunch.  One of my runs took place in a hotel fitness room that shared the same environment as the pool.  The humid air made it the most difficult run I have had so far. Oh my.

Today I ran 8 miles with members of my half marathon team.  We tried to come up with a team name after our run but the blood flow that normally tapped into our creative brains was busy healing our limbs so we came up with nothing.

Sara saw an instagram of our team and asked me to post some tips.

This is the 3rd half I have trained for and here is what I have learned along the way:

~Do Not Overtrain.  My first I ran at least 4 times a week as per a schedule I probably found online.  Now I only run 3 times a week.

~Music Helps.  When I trained for my second I ran a lot faster and I think it was partly because I chose music that inspired a faster pace.  

A few tracks that always work:

I suggest making a playlist and trying it out--cutting out songs that did NOT work to get your feet moving faster.  I have found there is a bit of a pavlovian effect--I hear certain songs now and it reminds my body to move.

~Long Runs are more fun with friends.  I did most of my long runs in the first training with friends.  It made it much better because when I wanted to quit, I couldn't!

~Change Route.  To avoid boredom, change up your route.

~Keep your Route the same.  To get a sense of how long a mile is, do the same route over and over so that your body gets used to how long it take to get from one landmark to another.

~Hydrate. I always run with water, usually spiked with nuun.  Also, I choose gatorade on the course most of the time.  Being thirsty is worse than being hungry.

~After 8 miles, consider fueling.  I prefer Clif Blocs or jelly belly sports beans.  I like a bagel or toast before and a donut and chocolate milk after.

~Speed challenge.  On shorter runs I like to run a bit faster or increase the speed on the treadmill gradually during maybe the last half or full mile to push a bit.

~Hills are your friend.  A friend taught me to use my arms and pull like I was holding a rope walking up a steep mountain and this imagery helps a lot.

~Mental! It's all mental.  Wanting to quit is usually never about your physical body--talk yourself out of it, or decide to think about something or run through a difficulty.

~Slow Down.  If you have NEVER run friend Sam gave me good advice. Slow it down.  Sometimes you jog faster than you walk when you are just getting started.  This will help you avoid cramps and frustration and you will naturally speed up and enjoy running.

~Give yourself a few miles to ease into your run.  It takes that long---especially when you are old like me.

Hope that helps! Enjoy your run!


  1. Dear Kristy, I am not by any means a Beta specialist but we have 2 healthy betas that are now 3 1/2 years old! We have them in large glass bowls and the only special thing we do is change the water once a week with filtered water and sometimes we use one drop of tap water conditioner (API) to make it safer for our fish and wash the bowl, the little rocks that we keep in the bottom.
    I know that most will advise having a filter, a thermometer, a heater but we never had any of these gadgets and they are still going strong! Considering that Betas live 3-4 years max I guess we must be doing something right!
    We have had in the past few months couple issues (perhaps due to the advanced age of our Betas) like our blue guy had fin and tail rot (that we treated with BetaFix) our red Beta had swim bladder disease and was floating sideways for the longest time. We thought it was going to die, but after following the advise not to feed flakes (they can swell up in their stomach and compress the swim bladder making them unable to float straight or go to the bottom of the aquarium), fasted it for couple of days and aded aquarium salt to the water for a week it seems to have recovered. Last our blue guy has bubble eye that we are treating with Melafix (API) and it seems to be recovering well.
    It is funny how we became knowledgeable about fish because of our Betas.
    Sometimes what I hear is that in a lot of places the fish come sick from the pet shops so I guess there is a bit of luck on the mix also!
    almost forgot that for he past two weeks we have added live plants to our fish bowls, (Aqua Fern) I was told this helps decrease stress on the fish!
    I hope this helps is some way!
    Good luck with your fish adventures.

    1. PAtricia that is the most amazing comment ever! I cannot believe how amazing those fishes are. I have a feeling our Banjo is going to be like that. I had one more thought---what if I used some of his water as a base for the water for the new fish? I wonder if the PH balance and slime and whatever would be just right for a new fish? I have read a lot about establishing the tank or letting it cycle through etc. I just use tap water and conditioner, maybe fancier water would be better. I am about ready to give up on that second fish though since this one is working out well. THANKS.

  2. This is the dumbest question ever, but how do you picks route when you live in an area like ours? It seems like it would be impossible with so many people, cars, piles of dog poop...clearly, I haven't actually tested this theory (as I sit here on my couch doing nothing). Help me Kage! -couch potato