Imerman Angels

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

The Big 20!

9/16/13-Fleet Feet fun run

I headed out to Fleet Feet for the Pint Night fun run. The fun run would last between three and six miles depending on the distance people wanted to run. My marathon plan called for a five mile run so I went with the five mile group. Asics also had some reps there and people could try on a variety of shoes they had. I wanted to try out a neutral pair of shoes, so I went with the Gel-Lyte33 2.

Night time view of the lakefront on the fun run
The guy in the red in the picture led the five mile group run and he went out pretty fast. I tried my best to keep up with him, but I just could not. It felt good to push it a little and try to catch him; it felt like a little bit of speed work. I ended up losing the group and creating my own five mile run.
Asics Gel-Lyte33 2
The shoes felt pretty great. When I put them on before the run, I felt pretty weird in them. My feet were really close to the ground and I did not know how'd I feel about that (6" heel drop), considering at the time I run in the GTS 13's by Brooks. However, they ended up feeling good. They are also very lightweight. I probably would not run a marathon in these, but I think they would be good for mid-week runs during training.

Once I got done stretching and rolling out (and making a few purchases-more on that later), I headed to Benchmark with a few others who did the fun run. Depending on my work schedule, Pint Night fun runs are definitely something that I would do again. I enjoyed hanging out with other runners and fun run leaders while watching the Monday Night Football game. I tried not to have too much fun because I knew I would have to get a run in with my high schoolers.

9/19/13-Hazel run

Before I headed to Benchmark, I made a few purchases. The first purchase, actual running shorts.
Brooks Men's Essential 2 in 1 7" Short
I went the Brooks Men's Essential 2-in-1 7"shorts. Running shorts have always been something I avoided since I started running. They always looked too short and pulling off that look is something that I did think I could do. I settled on the Brooks partly because I know the brand, but also because they were recommended to me.

They got their first test during a six mile run with some of the cross country kids. It took a while to it being short, but I felt good in them. I never felt uncomfortable and I love the compression portion of the shorts. If someone asked me to recommend a pair or shorts, these are the one I would suggest to them first.

The actual run felt really good. We pushed it pretty good and kept it around a 7:33 pace. It could have been an even faster pace, but the head XC coach did not want to push them too hard. It is a good thing he led the workout, because I probably would have pushed them harder. We all did an ice bath after the run and I felt confident about my 20 miler!

9/20/13-20 Miler

And it's time for new shoes(has been for a while)
SaltSticks Capsules were the other purchase I made. I purchased them specifically for my 20-mile run and breaking through the wall during the marathon. One of the things I learned as a salty sweater is that I lose more salt than others. This may seem more like common sense, but this is just another lesson I have learned as a runner.

If the 20-miler were going to happen, it would have to happen after work. I had a weekend full of activities and would not really have time to run. While getting ready for work, I packed eight capsules in a bag because I did not know how much of them I would need; I planned on taking one every 30 minutes. Fast forward to finishing hours later, it would be time for the run.

The only mistake I really made is drinking a naked juice before the run. It would definitely come back to haunt me later. The first seven and half miles of the run went really well;this is when my stomach stopped thinking the run would be going well. It forced me to take a unwanted mini pit stop. Back to my regularly scheduled run.

Despite the humidity, I felt great during the rest of the run. I ended up taking six capsules during my run and I felt they really helped. I carried a water bottle with me (which I did not really care for) because I figured there would be very little water fountains to take the capsules. My legs felt great during the run and I never felt too fatigued.

I looked at the splits after my run and felt really good about them. There were only two splits I did not care for were the one with my stop and mile 16. I have to have the confidence that things will get better during race and I will hit my goal. When I got done analyzing my run, I walked around for quite sometime, stretched and ate two clif bars (White Chocolate Macadamia nut might be the best clif bar I have ever had). It is easy to just want to sit down after a long run, but that is not a good idea; keep your legs moving!

With the 20-mile run complete, I feel ready for the marathon. The picture above also shows that I am ready for some new shoes. It is probably a crazy idea to switch now, but the shoes are long overdue for a change. I am not sure what I will purchase, but it will probably be in the Brooks family of shoes.


I am including the day after the run because I learned a very valuable lesson. It is very important to drink lots of water after an extremely long run. I felt like I had, had enough, but I woke up feeling nauseous and dizzy. I talked to a few runners and they concluded I had been dehydrated. Normally I do a really good job of staying hydrated; my body felt otherwise. I drank a lot more water on Saturday and felt better about six hours after I woke up.

Hydrate properly!

Tuesday, September 17, 2013


Between coaching(middle school football and some XC) and working, my energy has been lacking lately. Lately I have just been coming home and not wanting to do anything. I feel bad about that because I really want to keep this blog updated and current. Here is a brief summary of my last two training weeks.

Weeks 13

The last two weeks have been kind of interesting. Being busy forces you to find time times to fit your runs in. I sometimes stress about it, but I need to remember I will be fine as long as I actually get the runs in.

Week 13 went very well. It made me a little nervous because it featured a long run of 19 miles. Since I run at odd times, I knew I would be running the whole thing by myself. However, I am getting ahead of myself. I got in three great five mile runs during and it got me pumped up about the long run. My best run happened on September 5, 2013. I have no idea why I ran so hard and so fast, but I pushed myself really hard during the run and felt great. Due the busy week, I had a dilemma; get up early on Saturday before work and run 19 or do my long before the first Bears game!

I decided against running on 19 on Saturday and decided to do a short five mile run (it went great!). Now that I had gotten my run and worked, I rushed down to Lincoln Park to meet a few friends for Cultivate Fest.

My concert buddies, Vicki and Molly.

Walk the Moon!

The Mowgli's, Dale Earnardt Jr. Jr., Youngblood Hawke and Best Friends also played. I had a great time and will definitely come back next year if I can. My allergies sent me home early Saturday night and I took that as a sign that I would need to do my long run on Sunday.

Unfortunately, I did not wake up feeling too much better on Sunday. I wanted to get up early and do my run before the Bears game at noon. The allergies or head cold caused me to get going around 11:30 or so. I decided it would be ok to miss part of the Bears game to go for a run; this is how I know I have become a crazy runner.

Minus the humidity, I have no complaints about the run.
View from Medal of Honor Park
Despite how tired my legs felt at certain points toward the latter half of the run, I pushed hard and finished my last mile at a 7:40 pace. The run ended up taking me between 2:38:11 and and 2:38:20 ( I stopped the two gps apps I used at different times). It turned out to be a great Sunday. I got my run, watched football and the Bears won.

Week 14

Probably the weirdest training week out of all them so far. It is weird because, I only kept track of one run. I normally am pretty obsessed with keeping track, but I either forget or just did not bring my phone with me. Here is how the week went:

9/9/13- Did a short loop with the XC kids. We think it ended up being around three miles, but none of us were really sure. That three mile felt pretty hard in the 93 degree temps we had last Monday.

9/10/13-Way too hot do any kind of physical activity. I could have gotten a run in, but decided against it.

9/11/13-Hardest workout of the week by far! The top XC kids and I did a 1.7 mile warm-up and then did 6x800s! The top kid on the team ended up doing somewhere around 3:08's the whole time, while the rest us did somewhere between 3:10 and 3:13. So hard during the run, but I felt great afterwards and thanked the kids for pushing me to keep working hard.

9/12/13- My shin splints re-appeared (but on my left shin this time) and I did not run. I iced and worked a football game late that night.

9/13/13-Rest day. The started off well because I won Sublime With Rome Tickets at Concord Music Theatre;really nice venue
Sublime With Rome

9/14/13-My birthday! I went for a nice 12 miler at a park near my place.  My dad took me out for my birthday and I got this sundae at iHop. They sang to me when they brought it out and I felt pretty embarrassed. That is all I have today. The big 20 miler is this weekend! I will be sure to let people know how it goes. 

Thursday, September 5, 2013

It's been a while (again)

All of my various activities are keeping me busy. And I like that! The only thing that I do not like that it is doing, is the fact that it is keeping from updating my blog. I had a busy and fun week during week 12 of training. I hope you enjoy the post.

August 26, 2013

This happened to be an unexpected run. I went down to the Fleet Feet Sports South loop opening to attempt to get a gift card and ended up working the fun run, as an employee! I interview with Fleet Feet about three weeks ago and got hired. I have not officially started with them, but I am excited to get going.

On my first official night as an employee, I got assigned to work the 10:00 pace group with another employee. We did an four mile easy run at that pace and I got a chance to talk to some people in the group. I did my best to encourage one runner who looked like they had just decided to get into running recently. The runner really impressed me with the fact that they did not give up. They were really tired by the end of the run, but they run/walked the four miles. I always tell people to set small goals when they start running. Once those goals are achieved, set a different set of goals.

August 27, 2013

What a hot day! I had something to do early in the morning at my school, so it really worked out that I could run early in the day instead of the afternoon. I got off to another slow start at the beginning of this run. This time it included the first two miles.

I had been a little sore from working out with the volleyball team and the school's sports performance coach. I do not think it had much to do with my slow start though. Things started to feel good by the third mile and the run ended very well. Miles two through five were run at an 8:01, 8:18 and 7:24 pace.   That is a big difference, but I am glad that I could finish run strong. Even if I am not happy with a time, it  always feels good to end a run strong and gives me confidence for the next run.

August 28, 2013

The midweek eight mile has been nice lately because my school is about eight miles from my place and I can just run there. I had some fun on this run with an unknown runner who ran part of the same course I did. She definite had no idea that she pushed me to run a little quicker. It ended up being one of my better runs in a while.

I still felt sore from Monday's workout but my legs kept chugging along. Somewhere along mile two of my run, I saw a woman up ahead turn on to the same block I would be running on. I had no idea how long she had been running or how long she would be running, but I waned to pass her and pick-up the pace on my run. I ended up doing both and felt good about it. On a few occasions, I would look back to see where she had been and I would think, "Oh no, she is catching up." I kept running hard so she would not pass me.

The mysterious woman disappeared somewhere around four of my run(I think). I wish I could thanked her for encouraging me on my run without even noticing. Other than the stretch between miles four and five (which seem to be a common slow zones from my run when I run this way), the rest of the run went great. I ended with negative splits on the last three miles of the run. I got some interesting news when I got done with my run.

August 29, 2013

I got asked to run with the cross country team when I could. This made me laugh a little because I never would have ever expected to run with/coach a cross country team. Nevertheless, I looked forward to the chance to run with some of our better kids. The only thing that made me nervous is that this would be my fourth consecutive day of running.

We were assigned to do a five mile loop that would lead us back to the school. It had also been interesting to run in a group because I am so use to running by myself. This run would challenge the notion hat running is not a team sport. My group stayed together and kept a very solid pace during the run.

The length of the run actually ended up being somewhere around 4.8 miles (I got the extra .2 miles in). We stretched, did 50 push-ups and foam rolled after we were done running. They also did an ice bath! I decided at the recommendation of fellow blogger, Emily.

Trying to enjoy my first ice bath

The first couple of minutes are really tough. Once those two minutes are over, you stop thinking about how cold it is. I also suggest not moving because it makes the water even colder. My legs felt great afterwards and I would do it again. My legs would be ready for long run Sunday.

September 1, 2013

The athletic director a my school asked me if I had a long run planned for the weekend and I mentioned my 13 mile run. I almost said, "just 13 miles." It is crazy to think that I said almost said just 13 miles out loud. I guess subconsciously I think 13 is an easy run now. Yikes.

Maybe that thinking helped my confidence on Sunday because my run went very well. I stayed around an eight minute mile the whole time. I ended up running the majority of this run on the lakefront path. I generally do not like the lakefront path, but I decided I did not want to stop too much on my run.

Even though I did not want to stop too much, I had to stop once because I got nervous about my breathing just before mile seven. My chest hurt for some reason, my breathing did not feel well, so I stopped and walked for about a minute. I had to remember that getting to the race on October 13 is the long-term goal of this run; time should not be a factor. Despite stopping for that time period, this ended up being my one of my better runs since the Rock 'N' Roll Half-Marathon. I had a strong finish and ended up having a great rest of the day.

Brief preview of this week

My hamstrings have been a little sore. It has not stopped my running but they have just been annoying. Depending on how I am feeling tomorrow, I may update this post during a long ride to and from our football game. That is all from me today.

Keep working hard