April 05, 2008

Lisa: Marathon Stats

All this looking back reminded me that I intended to collect all the numerical data from our marathon entries, put it into Excel, and generate some kind of graphical representation. Because I'm a nerd and I like stuff like that.

Anyway, here it is at long last:

For each data series, you can see a line linking the actual data points (the jagged line) and a smooth line indicating the overal trend of the series. In general, as we added more distance, our spead decreased. We might have gotten in better shape, but that improvement was obviously directed toward distance, not speed. My weight stayed pretty much the same over six months of training, but my body fat percentage did exhibit a small downward trend. Now you know.

September 19, 2006

Lisa: she did it!

It looks like my role model Pamie, who inspired me to start training for my marathon, has run hers. Now why didn't I think of Maui?

June 15, 2006

Lisa: Marathon

Words cannot express how supportive and wonderful our familes and friends were during the marathon. I can only echo what Sarah said and add a big ME TOO. Thanks, you guys! I wouldn't have made it to the end without you, and I certainly wouldn't be considering running again next year (am I insane?). Thank you, Blake. Thanks, Mom and Dad for running us in to the finish line. Most of all, thank you Sarah for getting me through the months of training, putting up with my bossiness, and for being my best friend. I love you all.

For the record, here are our average speeds, based on my pages to Blake as we passed various mile markers:

Miles 1-3: 11.5-minute miles
Miles 3-5: 12-minute miles
Miles 5-8: 13-minute miles
Mile 8: 14-minute mile
Mile 9: 12-minute mile
Miles 10-14: 13-minute miles
Miles 15-16: 14-minute miles
Miles 17-18: 17.5-minute miles
Miles 19-20: 17-minute miles
Mile 21: 21-minute mile
Mile 22: 17-minute mile
Mile 23: 18-minute mile

Mile 24: 14-minute mile

Final time: 6:16:57
Place: 156 of 160 in my age group, 1866th overall (Hey, we got to the end! No mocking.)

Here are the pictures the official marathon photographers took. I haven't decided whether to order any yet, since the thumbnails are SO TINY. Also, I think we might have been too late to get a finish line photo.

130.5 lbs, 25% body fat (with wet hair)

For an extra gross-out, here are my humongous blisters. I wore these special socks that have two layers and are supposed to prevent blisters, and I didn't get any blisters at all EXCEPT on the outsides of both big toes.

June 05, 2006

Sarah: And we raaaaan, we ran so far awaaaay...

I'm sure Lisa will have more to say about the marathon, but I just wanted to let everyone know that we didn't die! We were a bit slower than expected (about six hours, rather than the predicted 5.5), but our goal was always to just cross the finish line. The day was hot, but not as bad as I thought. We jogged and walked, taking a slower pace when I got worn out, and when Lisa's knee started hurting. The backs of our legs got sunburnt, but all of that didn't matter.

What mattered was accomplishing our goal and being part of the race. The people that cheered us along from the sidelines helped more than they may realize. Thank you to the people that sent us encouraging messages: Jessie and Mallory on Friday night, and Mary, Nicole, Andrea, and E during the race. Thank you to everyone that saw us along the route: Mom, Dad, Blake, Bill (all of them multiple times! How awesome are they??), Dave (we saw him twice), Armando, Jeff, and Marci. The outpouring of love and support was so important to our success. You made us cry and you kept us going all the way to the finish line. Thank you for your well-wishes, Dawn, even though you had to work.

Thank you, Lisa, for getting me to commit to running with you. I've loved spending time with you, chatting during our runs, commiserating about blisters and stiff muscles. You were encouraging, supportive, understanding, and determined. I wouldn't have dared attempt a marathon without you, and even if I had, I couldn't have finished without you pushing me along.

We weren't the fastest, the most glamorous, or the most natural athletes. But we set out to run 26.2 miles, and we did it.

June 02, 2006

Lisa: T-Minus 11 hours and counting

The marathon is tomorrow morning. If you would like to send a bit of support or encouragement our way, send a text message to (number removed) between 6 and 11:30 am Utah time.


May 30, 2006

Lisa: Training, week 15 to the end!


I ran 3 miles at Sugarhouse Park, which took about 45 minutes. I think the shorter runs are to let our bodies heal up as much as possible before the marathon. It hurt to run, and I have to say that it felt more like injuries than just muscle soreness.

131 lbs, 28% body fat


Sarah and I mapped out a five-mile route on Gmaps Pedometer, which is a handy little tool. The only bummer part is that the maps don't show elevation, so we ended up running uphill quite a bit. It was no biggie, since the weather was gorgeous, sunny, and cool.


On Monday I ran eight miles along Highland Drive and back, which took roughly an hour and a half. I wasn't too sore, which was good, and the weather was chilly but nice.


On the Tuesday before the marathon--the last pre-race run!--I took 45 minutes to run 3 miles at Sugarhouse Park. The run wasn't bad, but it still didn't feel easy. I think those long runs really took a toll.

131 lbs, 26% body fat

May 22, 2006

Lisa: Training, Weeks 12-14

On Sunday, Sarah and I ran from the beginning of the marathon route to my house. We were supposed to go 18 miles, but only made it nine. We ran in the hottest part of the afternoon, which was dumb, and Sarah was feeling pretty sick and dehydrated. It took us 2 hours to go the 9 miles. Even though we didn't get the whole way, we still rewarded ourselves afterward with Funfetti cake.

On Tuesday I ran five miles at Sugarhouse Park, which took me an hour. The horrible stick-leg/bloody stump phenomenon strikes again!

Sarah and I ran five miles along the marathon route, from the top of 21st South to La Puente. It took us an hour. 131 lbs, 28% body fat.

On Saturday, we ran 18 miles: our longest run before the marathon! It took us three hours and fifty minutes to get from La Puente to the end of the marathon route. The last few miles were pretty hard, but we did surprisingly well! I think breaking up the run into two-mile segments really helps. Thinking about adding another eight miles is a bit daunting, though. Anyway, after the run, Sarah and I shored ourselves up with shakes and fries at Canyon Rim Park. 130.5 lbs, 29% body fat.

I ran 5 miles at Sugarhouse again, and again my legs felt like sticks.
129 lbs, 27% body fat

On Wednesday, I ran four miles down Highland Drive and back, past the Cottonwood Mall, for a total of eight miles. Not a bad run at all, if lacking in scenic appeal.

Thursday morning I went to Sugarhouse Park, but I only made it once around the 1.4-mile loop! I don't know if it was stiffness or injury, or because I had half a jar of low-carb peanut butter on celery for dinner the night before, or what, but I could barely move my legs. It was like I had no muscle tissue at all, just little tiny tendons trying really hard to pull my leg bones around. Ugh.

Saturday's run was SO much better. I was in California with my mom, and I ran nine miles along the beach from Asilomar to the Monterey Bay Aquarium and back. The weather was ideal and the views were amazing. My legs were still pretty stiff, but the air felt rich and the run was totally manageable. It took me a bit less than two hours all told.

May 06, 2006

Lisa: Training, Weeks 9-12

I have not given up on the marathon training, or on blogging--I promise. But it has been a bit of a bumpy road.

Sarah and I ran four miles at Sugarhouse Park.

Sarah and I were supposed to run 7 miles along Highland Drive, starting at my house, but she fell asleep downstairs in the cave bedroom, I fell asleep on the upstairs couch, and Blake fell asleep on the downstairs couch. There was no functional, alarm-regulated sleep to be had by anyone. Ugh. Once we woke up, we ran as far as we could along Highland while still getting to work on time. It ended up being about five and a half miles.

We may or may not have run four miles at Sugarhouse Park on Friday. Neither Sarah nor I has any recollection of this, but it is on the schedule and I choose to believe that we went.

On Saturday morning, Sarah and I ran from the church on Holladay Boulevard to the end of the marathon route, which makes fourteen miles. Running on Saturday morning instead of Sunday night was good, but I think we both felt pretty crappy by the end. The crappiness was compounded by the fact that we figured out several days later that we should have checked the calendar, because instead of going 12, 13, and then 14 miles, we were supposed to have done 12, 14, and then 16. DOUBLE UGH.
For our carb-rich treat, we had Jamba Juices and bagel sandwiches from Einsteins. Delicious, but I felt a bit sick afterward.

We ran five miles at Sugarhouse Park, which is three and a half times around. We haven't figured out a better five-mile route to run regularly, so for now we are just walking across the center of the park back to the car once we finish the last half-lap.

For the rest of week 10, we decided to take a break. We were both busy, but more importantly I think we were feeling pretty burned out and discouraged. We were hoping that if we took a few runs off, we would return for week 11 rested, rejuvenated, and recommitted.

On our first day back on schedule, Sarah and I ran our five miles at Sugarhouse Park.

On Thursday night, we ran eight miles along the marathon route, starting at the beginning and finishing up at La Puente. I felt great! At the beginning, the running felt natural and easy, and I felt like I was really able to push the pace for the first time in a while. It was a great confidence builder to have a good longish run again--I think this was one of my top two runs, along with the five-miler on March 10.
129 lbs, 27% body fat

Just like that run on March 10, we followed the great evening run with a short run the very next morning, which is a bad idea. We knew what we were getting into this time, but because of scheduling issues this was the best plan we could come up with. Anyway, we were supposed to go five miles at Sugarhouse, but since I felt like I had about five tiny, simultaneous sideaches and a broken knee, I only made it 2.8.

On Saturday morning Sarah and I ran sixteen miles (back on schedule!) from La Puente to 9th South and State Street. We decided in advance--before Thursday's run, actually--to incorporate some walking in a structured way. We walk two minutes after every two miles. This worked out great, because the two-mile chunks seemed really manageable, especially when compared to the entire run. We were still running by the time we got to the car! Unfortunately it took us about four hours to run the sixteen miles, which seems really slow. I felt that we were keeping a pretty good pace, though, so I'm not going to worry about it too much.
For our carb-rich treat we had fresh raspberry shakes from Shivers. Yum!

To start off week 12, I ran five miles at Sugarhouse, which took about an hour and five minutes. My hair was too unbelievably hideous to be photographically archived, so instead you get to see one of the beautiful trees that was in blossom along the loop.

April 11, 2006

Lisa: Training, Week 8


On Thursday morning I ran four miles at Sugarhouse Park, which took about 50 minutes. 131 lbs, 27% body fat


Friday I ran from my house to Murray Holladay Road and back, which was about six miles. My knee started really bothering me when I paused at stoplights, but it felt OK as long as I kept running. I decided to get a knee brace before my long run.


Saturday afternoon I ran at Sugarhouse again, and it was sunny and hot and packed with people. I went four miles in 48 minutes which makes for a 12-minute mile. Not very fast, but nothing to be totally ashamed about either, right? 131 lbs, 27% body fat


Late Sunday night (we started about nine) Sarah and I ran along the marathon route for 13 miles, starting at the beginning of the course and finishing up at the Cotton Bottom. We had to walk a few times because Sarah's arch was hurting really badly, but we got to the end in about three hours and ten minutes. I felt much better than last week, probably partly because I got a knee brace, Superfeet insoles, and a little belt thingie that could carry drinks and snacks.

April 03, 2006

Lisa: Training, Week 7


Last Wednesday I ran three times around Sugarhouse Park to get up to 4 miles. Everything felt totally weird. It felt weird to be running outside in the morning back in Salt Lake. It was really light out by the end of the run, which was weird. My feet felt weird, like running on permanently high-heeled Barbie feet. My lungs felt weird, like I couldn't get a deep breath. Anyway, other than the weirdness the run wasn't too bad. The last lap went by especially quickly.

130.5 lbs, 28% body fat


On Saturday morning, Sarah and I ran six miles along the marathon route, starting at the pharmacy and finishing up at Ivy Place, home of Spoons N' Spice. No big deal, except we agreed that running along Van Winkle always makes us feel dirty and gritty. The geese were next to the car at Ivy Place when we finished--Sarah was hoping they could stand in for a picture of her this time, so I'll give her a pass.

130.5 lbs, 28% body fat


WORST. RUN. EVER. Sunday we ran 12 miles for the first time. Blake thinks I might have been severely dehydrated, but anyway I felt like crap by about five miles in, then got up to the high point of "I might be OK" at about eight miles. I had to walk the last few blocks (we ran from 62nd South to the Gateway), and felt pretty shivery and pukish all the way home. I threw up in the privacy of my own bathroom, but I plan to stay better hydrated in the future to avoid a repeat performance.
For our carb-rich treat, Sarah got us McFlurries from McDonalds, and after showering I ate mine in front of Grey's Anatomy and started feeling better.

March 26, 2006

Lisa: Training, Week 6


It was way too cold in Boston to run outside in the mornings, so I ran on a treadmill in the hotel's exercise room. It was my first time training indoors--I wasn't prepared for how hot and sweaty I got! I'm glad I will be able to gradually acclimatize to the heat before the marathon in June. Anyway, I went four miles, which took about 50 minutes. The TV in the gym was set to a lame-o sports station without closed captioning, so I was a little bored and resolved to bring a magazine the next time. I weighed myself (with clothes on) at 134 lbs.


I got up at five again to run five miles on the treadmill, and this time I came prepared with a $1.99 gossip magazine. I set it up on the little shelf so that it covered the distance display, and when I was finished with the magazine I only had another half mile to run (plus I was totally caught up on whether or not Jessica Simpson has had a boob job or not)! It took me 66 minutes to run the five miles.


On Sunday, Molly joined me and Sarah on our first 11-mile run. We started the marathon route again, and made it from the Olympic Bridge all the way down to the Holladay Pharmacy, my favorite store for book toys, finger puppets, zipper purses, and all kinds of fun gifts and accessories. I drank a few ounces of Gatorade before and after, and made sure to stretch. I have to say, I felt a lot better than I did last week when we ran ten miles! The run took about 2 hours and 15 minutes.

March 20, 2006

Lisa: Training, Week 5 (and assorted ruminations)


Thursday Sarah and I ran in the evening along the marathon route, starting at La Puente and finishing at the Cotton Bottom. We went five miles, and it honestly didn't feel too bad.


On Friday night, we ran our three miles at Sugarhouse Park, as usual. It was cold, with snow seemingly being driven directly into our eyes. We are seriously so tough.


On Sunday after Jeff's recital, we ran TEN MILES, from the Cotton Bottom all the way to Liberty Park. After the first five miles, I felt great, but the last two miles felt really hard. I definitely hit a wall--the last couple of miles were just a test of will. It took us about 2 hours and 15 minutes.

I have been feeling a little bit less motivated lately, now that the runs are getting longer and harder and the newness and excitement has sort of worn off. I decided to buy a copy of the book to read on the plane. I figured it might get me more excited about running again, as well as giving me some more helpful info (about stretching, hydration, etc.) now that we are getting into the longer runs. Here's what I've been thinking about:

  • We need to have a carbohydrate-rich treat after the long runs. A Jamba Juice might be a tasty but relatively guilt-free option.

  • We need to stretch more (duh)

  • We need to be drinking Gatorade or a similar replacement drink before, DURING, and after runs over 8 miles. That means I probably need to get one of those belt pack things that will hold a water bottle.

  • The book talks a lot about positive visualization and self-talk. They suggest playing "videos" in your head of finishing the marathon or the highlights from your best run ever. I think all that stuff is kind of cheesy, but it seems to really work for people and it might be worth trying.

  • I would like to try changing our running schedule so that the long runs are not on Sunday afternoons. It just seems like the runs are getting long enough that they get in the way of any Sunday night activities. Plus, if we are going to start getting a treat afterward, I would really rather not be buying something on Sundays on a regular basis. Maybe every other week we can go on Saturday mornings (which would mean no running on Fridays in order to give ourselves a rest day before the long run)?

  • We probably need to pick up the pace a bit. The book suggests doing this naturally by optimizing your running form. Watching a video of a marathon runner might help.

  • I think we should get some kind of reflecty vests or something to wear when we're running in the dark, to avoid death.
  • So. Put all of THAT in your back pocket.

    March 13, 2006

    Lisa: Training: Week 4


    Last Wednesday morning I ran three miles at Sugarhouse Park. I made a conscious effort to step up the pace, but disappointingly it still took me about 40 minutes.

    129 lbs, 28% body fat


    On Friday evening, Sarah and I ran five miles along the next section of the marathon route. We started at 45th South and 5th East and finished at Liberty Park, which was flat all the way and felt easy peasy. We kept up a pretty good pace except during a short bathroom break at 21st South. The whole thing still took an hour and ten minutes.

    128.5 lbs, 27% body fat


    On Saturday morning, about 12 hours after our five mile run on Friday night, Sarah and I dragged ourselves around Sugarhouse Park for three miles. I consider it an accomplishment that we never stopped to walk--12 hours was definitely not enough time to recover. You can see we are not happy...


    Sunday night Sarah and I started the marathon route again to get our full 8 miles in. We ran from the bridge to the intersection of 20th East and 33rd South. That's the hilliest section of the course, and we were basically at a survival pace. It took us an hour and fifty minutes to run the whole distance in the freezing cold. I think we would have been better off with our usual rest day before the long run.

    130 lbs, 29% body fat

    March 06, 2006

    Lisa: Training: Week 3


    Last Tuesday morning, Sarah and I ran our 3 miles at Sugarhouse Park. Sugarhouse is becoming our default location for 3-mile runs, because the distance is easy to calculate and it's pretty close to both of our houses. Also, Sugarhouse is hilly and so we're forcing ourselves to train a bit harder. It took us 40 minutes.

    130 lbs, 28% body fat


    Somehow on Thursday we ran a mile longer than we were supposed to. The schedule had us running four miles, but we apparently miscalculated the section of the marathon route we ran, so we went 5 miles. We didn't figure it out until later, because it only took us an hour. No wonder the run seemed so hard! We ran from Sugarhouse Park to Holladay Boulevard, ending with the section of the route we had run before. We decided it was much better not to have to stop at the midpoint and run back to the cars. When that's the plan, it feels like you get to the end of the route and then have to do the whole thing over again. When we have a car stationed at each end of the route, the end is really the end (if that makes sense).


    On Sunday afternoon we ran the next seven miles of the marathon course, from Holladay Boulevard to 45th South and 5th East. This section of the course was mostly flat and downhill, but was probably my least favorite so far. Most of the roads are pretty busy, have no sidewalks, and often don't even have shoulders to run in. It took us about an hour and a half to finish, but I think we both felt better than we did after last Sunday's six miles, and possibly better than after Thursday's five. The weather was perfect--warm enough to run in just a t-shirt and pants, but cool enough that we didn't get too hot from the exercise.

    130.5 lbs, 29% body fat

    February 27, 2006

    Lisa: Training: Week 2, Days 3 & 4


    After an unfortunate sleeping-in experience, I ran three miles at Sugarhouse Park. Afterward, I even did a few of the stretches I made Blake show me! Nothing crazy involving sitting on the ground or anything, but there was some toe-touching and a tiny bit of calf-stretching. I'm pretty sure that the guys running by while I was stretching my calves thought I was trying to push my car, but tra-la-la! I was going to take a picture, but my camera battery died.


    Sarah and I started at the top of the marathon route at the Olympic Bridge, and ran six miles--finishing with a loop around Sugarhouse Park. We parked one car at the end of our path and drove the other one up to the beginning so that we wouldn't have to backtrack. Six miles doesn't seem significantly harder than five miles, but it was still pretty killer. It was sunny and (relatively) warm, which made me sorry I had bundled up in gloves, a headband, and a jacket. Anyway, the point is that we made it! I think it will be fun to run segments of the actual marathon course instead of the same old parks.

    February 22, 2006

    Lisa: Training: Week 2, Days 1 & 2


    On Tuesday, Sarah and I both ran at Sugarhouse Park, but got there at different times and so didn't run into each other even once. It was super freezing--I didn't even get warm enough to take off my gloves by the end of the run, and my lips were totally numb. The good part is that three miles is seeming totally manageable now! I went a little over twice around the park, which took me 45 minutes.

    129.5 lbs, 30% body fat


    Sarah was a champion yesterday and mapped out a four-mile route for us along part of the marathon course. We ran along 2300 East for about an hour, and I have to say it was better than circling a track 16 times or even going several times around a park. It was fun to have new landmarks, too. Four miles still seems pretty far, though!

    128.5 lbs, 28% body fat

    February 19, 2006

    Lisa: Training: Week 1, Days 3 & 4


    To get up to three miles on Friday, I went a little over twice around Sugarhouse Park. It took about 45 minutes.

    129.5 lbs, 30% body fat


    Today Sarah and I ran five miles! I have never run five miles before in my life, so I consider this kind of a big accomplishment. I couldn't believe how long it took us--an hour and 20 minutes to go four times around Liberty Park. We did walk for two minutes halfway through the third lap, but other than that we jogged the whole time. Go, us!

    I think Sarah is doing the best she can just to form her mouth into some semblance of a smile:

    February 16, 2006

    Lisa: Training: Week 1, Days 1 and...1 1/2


    In a strange and disturbing turn of events, Sarah was there to run at 5:30 on Wednesday morning (our first day of real marathon training), and I was the one who slept through it. I went as soon as I got up, though--braving a parking lot full of actual students at Olympus High School. I ran 3 miles, which took about 40 minutes.

    130 lbs, 29% body fat


    This morning was the biggest blizzard of the year so far, but I braved the unplowed roads to get to Olympus by 5:00 am to run our 4 miles. Unfortunately, the track was covered with the same pristine FOOT of snow as the roads. I tried running, but it was like running in sand with weight strapped to my legs. After a mile, I called it quits. Here's the path I tramped for myself:

    So, not a great start to the "real" 16 weeks of training. Hopefully the weather will warm up soon and we won't have any more days that are so snowy they actually prevent running. Otherwise, does anyone want to trade their treadmill for my elliptical trainer until June?

    130.5 lbs, 30% body fat--but I look thinner, I swear!

    February 13, 2006

    Lisa: Pre-training: Week 10

    Sugarhouse Park
    2.2 miles, 30 minutes
    130 lbs, 29% body fat

    Liberty Park with Sarah
    2.19 miles, 35 minutes
    131 lbs, 30% body fat

    My neighborhood with Sarah
    42 minutes (because I suggested we go on a wild goose chase to find a mysterious nearby school)
    129.5 lbs, 28% body fat

    Liberty Park
    2.5 miles, 37 minutes

    February 05, 2006

    Lisa: Pre-training: Week 9, Days 2-4


    On Thursday I ran alone at Sugarhouse Park. I forgot my gloves, which was a bummer since it was snowing--little flakes at first, and then the huge ones that land on your face and melt, leaving rivers of cold water running down your cheeks. About ten minutes into the run I got warm enough that I stopped wishing I had my gloves, so that's not too bad. I ran a little bit more than once around the loop; I tracked it as 2 miles on my car's odometer. 30 minutes feels easy after last week's 50 minutes, and I actually felt great when I was done!

    129.5 lbs, 29% body fat


    Sarah and I ran at Liberty Park on Friday morning. Again, I know we're running further without a break, but it still feels a lot easier than two sets of 20 minutes. Anyway, we went about 2 miles.

    129.5 lbs, 29% body fat


    Sarah and I ran at the Olympus High track on Sunday afternoon, and it was sunny and warm--almost too warm for jackets. For some reason, 30 minutes is feeling hard again, like we haven't run for weeks. We dragged ourselves nine times around the track, which is 2.25 miles.

    130 lbs, 27% body fat

    January 31, 2006

    Lisa: Pre-training: Week 9, Day 1

    This morning Sarah and I slogged through two inches of slushy snow at Canyon Rim Park. The regimen for this week is 25 minutes of jogging followed by 5 minutes of fast walking. That's it! No repeating. I think that's the only thing that kept us going up the hill to the top of the park each time. We ran once around the park, twice around the park and the church, and then walked a shorter loop around part of the park to finish up.

    130 lbs, 28% body fat

    Sarah was not enthusiastic about getting her picture taken...

    January 30, 2006

    Lisa: Pre-training: Week 8, Days 2-4

    It looks like the marathon group has dwindled to just me and Sarah. It's weird, but I think we feel more committed than when there were five of us. If one of us doesn't show up, it's guaranteed that the other person will be training alone. It also means we can be a bit more flexible with training times and locations.


    Sarah and I braved a snowstorm to run at the Highland High track. Apparently one end of the track is always in shade, and consequently was covered in snowdrifts. We stuck it out, though, going 13 times around for a total of 3.25 miles.

    128.5 lbs, 29% body fat


    We couldn't face hills again on Sunday, so Sarah and I ran at the Olympus track. We went 13 times around again (3.25 miles). The second 20-minute session was pretty horrible, but we made it!

    132 lbs, 31% body fat (but I had just eaten, so whatever)


    This morning Sarah and I met at Liberty Park. Our 50 minutes took us 2 1/2 times around the park (3.13 miles). This week is the first week my legs have felt sore after every run. That's got to be good, right? I'm starting to get a little paranoid that the muscles on one side of my body will be longer or something, since we always run counterclockwise around the tracks and parks. I'm afraid that if there are any right turns on the marathon path, I won't be able to turn that way and I'll veer uncontrollably off the path to the left and crash into a laundromat. I guess I could take care of the problem by running clockwise once in a while, but that just seems so wrong.

    130 lbs 29% body fat

    January 26, 2006

    Lisa: Pre-training: Week 8, Day 1

    Yesterday morning I ran at the Cottonwood Park with the ball fields. We are now on 20 minutes of running followed by 5 minutes of fast walking, repeated once. The good news is that 20 minutes feels about the same as 15 minutes. The bad news is that the similarity lies in the fact that they both feel really long. None of the other girls were there, but luckily I wasn't lonely as I was befriended by a friendly but masked man with a dog and a nearly unintelligible accent. I think he was enthusiastically telling me that his dog wanted to run "All around!" but I am not completely sure.

    128.5 lbs, 29% body fat

    January 23, 2006

    Lisa: Pre-training: Week 7, Days 3 & 4

    On Saturday, Sarah and I ran at Liberty Park. We got about 2 1/4 times around the park, which makes 2.8 miles. Now that we are really starting to run, we are starting to see photographic evidence of the phenomenon my "friends" like to refer to as "tomato face."

    Yesterday, Marci and I ran on the killer hills of Sugarhouse Park. We went exactly twice around the loop in our 40 minutes, which is 2.8 miles (woot woot!). At the end of our run we were right behind this couple walking two dogs. Almost immediately after passing this sign...

    ...admonishing dog owners to clean up after their pets, the bigger of the two dogs pulled over for a dump. The man just waited until the dog was finished, and then moved on. No picking up of the crap was even considered! If you recognize this couple, please ask them to be more civically minded. Bags are even provided in the dispenser below the sign!

    1/21/06: 128 lbs, 29% body fat
    1/22/06: 129 lbs, 29% body fat

    January 20, 2006

    Lisa: Pre-training: Week 7, Day 2

    Who: Just me


    What: Running for fifteen minutes, fast walking for five minutes--twice--for a total of 40 minutes. I went ten times around the track (2.5 miles).

    Where: Well, the schedule said we were supposed to meet at Cottonwood Regional Park. That is code for Wheeler Farm. There is one lit parking lot right at the front of the park/farm (see diagram), but I remembered vaguely from the website that the walking trails were somewhere at the back, where I could see nothing but a pool of inky blackness.

    The whole place was freaky, dark, and deserted except for (I assume) barnyard animals, so after waiting for the other girls for a while I absconded to Cottonwood High's track. It's not too far from Wheeler Farm, and the track is well lit. Unfortunately, by the amount of ice on the track I can only assume they are preparing for a speed skating competition of some kind. Walking was a lot scarier than running, though--I guess your feet spend more time in contact with the ground. There were a few skiddy moments, but I didn't actually fall down. My knees hurt for the first time this morning, but I think it was more from the cold than any kind of strain or injury.

    I would be willing to try Wheeler Farm again when it is light outside and/or if I have the map with me. It's pretty far away for a weekday run, but might be a good option for Sundays when Mallory joins us.

    January 19, 2006

    Lisa: Pre-training: Week 7, Day 1

    Yesterday I met Sarah and Jessie at Liberty Park for our first-ever 5:00 am training session. 5 feels much, much earlier than 5:30. I set my alarm for 4:30, a time I think most humans should never, ever have to see. You can tell by my eyes how much more tired I am than usual:

    This week we started doing two sets of running for 15 minutes, then fast walking for 5 minutes. 15 minutes of running also feels significantly longer than 10 minutes, but we ignored what our bodies were telling us and got through it just fine. 40 minutes took us exactly twice around the park, for a total of 2.5 miles.

    128.5 lbs, 29% body fat

    January 16, 2006

    Lisa: Pre-training: Week 6, Day 3

    We had a smaller Sunday group yesterday because of the snow, but Sarah and I toughed it out at Sugarhouse Park. We clocked our distance with her car's trip counter afterwards. It's 1.4 miles around the road that circles the park, and we went 1.7 miles. It's not as far as we have been going lately, but Sugarhouse has several killer hills that make it a much harder place to run than Liberty Park or a track.

    I forgot to take our pictures until we were almost home.

    128.5 lbs, 29% body fat

    January 14, 2006

    Lisa: Pre-training: Week 6, Day 2

    Blake (who is training for a triathlon) and I ran at the Olympus track tonight. The track of course isn't lit, and I was trying to time my sessions with song lengths on the iPod again--the problem is that I haven't figured out how to turn on the backlight. I could only check my times at one spot on the track where it was light enough to see the screen. Anyway, I went nine times around, so about 2.25 miles. I think I started off a bit too fast, because I had a small sideache during the first ten minute running session. Of course, I hadn't warmed up or anything, so that probably didn't help. Even considering the sideache, why do two sessions of ten minutes seem so much easier than three sessions of five minutes?

    128 lbs, 26% body fat

    January 10, 2006

    Lisa: Pre-training: Week 5, Days 2 and 3; Week 6, Day 1


    "Diane, it's 7:44 on the morning of Saturday, January 7th, my mom's birthday. I just got to Memory Grove, which is where we're running this morning. It took me a lot less time than I thought it would to get here, probably because of the lighter morning/weekend traffic. I left the house at 7:28, so it took me about 16 minutes. Anyway, I've got a while to wait for the other girls, so I'll keep you posted on how the run goes."

    "Well, I did it. I ran this morning, but it was kind of a fiasco. I got here at about 7:45, and we were supposed to run at 8:00. I knew I had a while to wait, so I started doing my Sudoku puzzles. By eight THIRTY, no one was here except me. I don't know why I waited that long, except that I was busy doing my puzzle and also couldn't believe that when we were running at EIGHT people would sleep in, but whatever. Anyway, I started, and the first two five-minute running sessions were hideous. The third one wasn't so bad. The problem was that after the first running session, I got the feeling that my key wasn't in my shoe anymore. I didn't want to wear my huge coat, and my little jacket doesn't have any pockets, so I decided to time my five minute segments with the song lengths on my iPod, which I carried in my hand. (Coughing.) For lack of a better way to carry it, I took my car key off my keychain and put it in my shoe. Somehow, I guess it flew out while I was running. That was genius. I kept an eye on the trail on my way back since I couldn't feel the key in there anymore, but didn't see the key lying anywhere. I got all the way back to the beginning again, and checked my shoes, but my key wasn't in there. I started retracing my steps, and ran into these nice people with dogs. They said they had seen a key on the little plaque about the park right by the entrance, so I went back there and sure enough there it was--about TEN FEET away from my actual car. So, criminals, follow me running, and you'll totally get a free car with lots of sweet stuff in it. Luckily, my car was still there with all the sweet stuff still inside. I guess all's well that ends well. It's 9:11, and I'm heading home to get ready and then to go run errands for Mom's party. There you have it--half an hour behind schedule but I guess none the worse for wear."

    "Memory Grove was a pretty nice place to run. It wasn't too crowded and it has a sort of paved road, most of which is not accessible to motor vehicles. It was flat but with kind of a gradual incline on the way into the canyon. I saw lots of other runners and dog walkers at the entrance to the park, and some people over on the trail that runs parallel to the paved path, but most of the time when I was running I was alone. You know, and then there are those nice key-finding elves. So, that's got to be good, right?"


    Sunday, Marci and I ran at the Olympus track. We went 8 times around, which makes 2 miles.

    129 lbs, 28% body fat


    "Diane, the date is Tuesday, January 10, 2006. The time is 5:46. I'm at Liberty Park on the south side. I got up this morning for running, but accidentally snoozed! I woke up at about 5:15, hurried my butt over here, and was in the parking lot by just a few minutes after 5:30. I got a text from Sarah right around the time I got here, saying she was on her way, so I will stay here until she arrives."

    "Well, Diane, it's now 6:24. Sarah showed up just a couple of minutes after I talked to you last. This week we started doing two sets of running ten minutes and then walking five minutes, for 30 minutes total. It wasn't too bad. The first five minutes actually went by really fast, so the first ten minutes almost felt like the first five minutes used to feel. We went all the way around the park and back to the cars once, but we weren't done yet, so then we went about a quarter of the way around again and then back-tracked to the cars, but we still weren't done. We kept back-tracking around to the corner and then went back to the cars. I think we did about two minutes extra walking on the whole thing, but I'm going to draw a picture when I get home so that I can figure out how far in distance that we went."

    I figure we went around the park 1 3/4 times. The path around the park is supposedly 1.25 miles, so that means we went a total of 2.19 miles!

    129.5 lbs, 29% body fat. I hope there's an overall downward trend, because there seems to be a lot of fluctuation up and down.

    January 03, 2006

    Lisa: Pre-training: Week 4, Days 3 & 4; Week 5, Day1

    If I am going to keep track of each training session this way, I really need to stay on top of it better. Three at one time is crazy. Anyway.

    Week 4, Day 3:

    After I got off work on New Year's Eve, Sarah and I went up to the Red Butte Gardens area to check out the trail we were supposed to try the Tuesday before, when I stayed home sick. We ended up parking behind one of the corporate buildings in Research Park that had an entry point to the Bonneville Shoreline Trail. When we got up to the trail, it was totally muddy and full of puddles but we kept going anyway, heading north up past Red Butte (which was closed) toward the hospital. The trail seemed to end behind the cancer center, so we turned around and headed back to the car. It turned out to be great timing, because our 45 minutes was up right when we got back. We probably went a bit slower than usual, because we had to keep navigating around sinkholes. Our previously pristine running shoes got covered with red mud, but it was nice to be out walking in the daytime when we could actually see the great view from the trail. This part of the Bonneville trail will be good to try again when it is either colder, so that the ground is frozen (but not snowy), or warmer, so that the ground is drier.

    Week 4, Day 4:

    Unfortunately, Jessie had to work on Sunday afternoon (New Year's Day), but Sarah, Mallory, Marci, and I met at the 48th South entry to the Jordan River Parkway and headed south. It was a gorgeous day, and the paved trails and wooden bridges made for easy and fast walking. This part of the Parkway is quite flat, but the area is really pretty and I think it will be a good place for us to run--especially on Sundays when Mal is with us. We saw the most people that we have seen at any of our running locations yet, but that is probably because we went at a time of day when regular mortals are actually awake.

    Week 5, Day 1:

    This morning Marci and I met at Big Cottonwood park. We started actual jogging this week instead of just fast walking, and it was kind of a nasty shock. I was feeling so great with the walking, and I guess I thought I was in better shape than I actually am. The schedule was jog 5 minutes, walk 5 minutes, jog 5 minutes, walk 5 minutes, jog 5 minutes, and walk 5 minutes (for a total of 30 minutes). The worst jogging section was the first one; after that we kind of got used to the fact that jogging is a lot more painful than walking. In our 30 minutes, we circled the baseball fields, then did a big figure-8 around the rest of the park, finishing up with two more loops around the ball fields. A few minutes into our session it starting raining pretty hard--our first true running-in-bad-weather experience! We are so hardcore.

    1/1/06: 130 lbs, 29% body fat
    1/3/06: 129.5 lbs, 29% body fat


    December 30, 2005

    Lisa: Pre-training: Week 4, Days 1 & 2

    On Wednesday morning, Sarah, Jessie, and I met at Canyon Rim Park at 5:30 am to start the first of our 45-minute sessions. Besides a few dog-walkers, we had the park to ourselves. The basic sidewalk loop around the park took us about 12 minutes to walk, and we explored a few longer variations around the church next door and Canyon Rim Elementary School on the other side of that. We managed to completely freak ourselves out when we were walking around the side of the school through a little alley. Just as we were talking about spooky things you start thinking about when you're alone in the dark, the only streetlight in the alley went out, plunging us into darkness. OOOoooooOOOOO! Anyway, the only snag was that I didn't bring my headband thingie because I thought I'd be warm enough without it. I wasn't. Sarah lent me her scarf to wrap around my head, which looked awesome I'm sure. I think Jessie's new pedometer said we had gone about 2.2 miles.

    Here are Jessie and Sarah:

    Note my obvious chagrin that they are so photogenic so early in the morning:

    This morning we were supposed to meet at the Parley's Crossing section of the Bonneville trail. I waited for a while in the little parking lot at the south end of the crossing, but eventually set off alone. The whole point of this section of the trail is to allow bikers and pedestrians to cross the mouth of Parley's canyon, which otherwise is traversed only via a triangle of interlacing freeways going in and out of the canyon and across the canyon opening. The trail is parallel to freeway most of the way, so there is some ambient light, but there are no lights specifically for the trail itself. I would bet the crossing is one of the coldest trails in the valley, since runners are unprotected from the winds blowing out of the canyon almost the whole way. Luckily, this time I remembered my headband, coat, and gloves. There is also a wicked incline at each end of the trail, getting into or out of the canyon area. It took me a good 25 minutes each way to walk the whole length of the crossing, but I had plenty of graffiti to read. It was the usual stuff, like "Sheriff got a shotgun," "Beta Theta Pis think Delta Gammas are hot" (news flash!), and "Rotting human flesh this way."

    Here I am back at my car. I even put on tinted chapstick to combat that no-lipped look I apparently favor in the cold pre-dawn hours. I still have the giant, self-portrait-induced nose of doom though, so there should be something comfortingly familiar for you.

    12/28/05: 130 lbs, 31% body fat
    12/30/05: 128.5 lbs, 31% body fat

    December 23, 2005

    Lisa: Pre-training: Week 3, Day 3

    I snoozed my alarm for the first time on a running day this morning! Don't get me wrong, I am no stranger to the snooze button on regular days, but so far I have been good about hopping out of bed on training days when the alarm first rings. Maybe the fact that Sarah and I stayed up until 1:30 am watching Rounders after my concert had something to do with it. (Matt, call me!) Anyway, Sarah and I got to Tanner Park to meet Marci about 15 minutes late. The loop around the park is paved, and took us about seven minutes to walk all the way around at our "fast walking pace." Needless to say, it is not a big park. It was pretty dark, especially on the side of the loop furthest from the parking lots, and there were some muddy puddles to navigate around. I think it will be a good place for us to train once in a while, though, because it is so hilly. Also, if it weren't so dark I bet the view would be nice. The best news about this morning is that it was SO warm. I didn't need gloves or my coat! Not very Christmassy, but much better for early morning running.

    130.5 lbs, 29% body fat

    December 21, 2005

    Lisa: Pre-training: Week 3, Day 2

    WHO: Lisa and Sarah

    WHEN: Today at 6 am. Do you realize how dark it is in December at 6 am?

    WHERE: Sugarhouse Park

    WHAT: Walking around the road that circles the park took about 25 minutes, and then we explored some little sidewalks around one of the picnic areas for the last five. The street was pretty well lit and clear of snow. We saw one or two other runners, but the park was pretty deserted. I think we'll be back here!

    129 lbs, 31% body fat

    December 20, 2005

    Lisa: Pre-training: Week 3, day 1

    This morning Marci, Jessie, and I walked at Cottonwood High. At first we couldn't find the track, so we walked around the school instead. Actually, that worked pretty well because the school was well-lit and the snow had melted off the sidewalks. When we got around to the back of the school, we could see that the football field and track were sort of sunken down--the top level of the bleachers was even with the road behind the school. We found an open gate, headed down the steps, and went around the track four or five times. We are now at "fast walking pace," and I have to admit that it felt great--I could have kept going a while longer. It was more like exercise instead of some horrible punishment. I'm sure it helped that it was about ten degrees warmer than any of our previous training sessions. Anyway, yay us!

    December 16, 2005

    Lisa: Pre-training: Week 2, Day 3

    Unfortunately, when I go running alone everyone is subjected to an unflattering self-portrait. This is good for no one, people! This morning we were supposed to meet at Liberty Park, but due to extenuating circumstances involving alarm clock malfunctions and Lortab, it was just me.

    Verdict: the sidewalks at Liberty Park were totally cleared, and going all the way around the park took almost the whole 30 minutes, so I think it will be a great place for us to train. It's a little scary alone in the dark, but no one menaced me or broke into my car or anything, so it was probably mostly in my head. Also, I still need to look into the fleecy pants option, because legs=cold.

    129.5 lbs, 31% body fat

    December 13, 2005

    Lisa: Pre-training: Week 2, Day 1

    This morning Marci and I walked on the track at her alma mater, Olympus High School. The track was dark and covered with bumpy, crunchy snow, but close to both of our houses. It was much warmer today than on Sunday, and we got around the track six times in our 30 minutes. Unfortunately Sarah was unable to join us due to her extremely painful unidentified floating tumor situation.

    131.5 lbs, 30% body fat

    December 11, 2005

    Lisa: Pre-training, Day 3

    Today we had the most people yet! After some slight confusion as to which parking lot we were supposed to be waiting in, Mallory, Marci, Sarah and I met at the Olympus Hills Park for our walk. It said "closed for winter" on the signs, and the paths were snowy, but we decided to stay. There were several people walking their dogs, and some runners who were much more hardcore than we are were on the trails as well. It was cold when we started, but going up hills and up several sets of stairs soon got our blood going. We sort of did a figure 8 around the park's trails to get up to 30 minutes. Yay, us!

    131 lbs, 31% body fat

    December 09, 2005

    Lisa: Pre-training, Day 2

    WHAT: 30 minutes of walking in the freezing cold

    WHEN: At six am, when I might mention it is extremely cold. I think I need to get some fleecy pants to wear over my running pants. Like a coat for my legs.

    WHO: Lisa, Sarah, and Jessie (Yay! I was not alone! Jessie was on time, and luckily Sarah was sleeping at my house so I could wake her up and force her to come with us.)

    WHERE: The neighborhood around my house, where the streets are quiet, flat, and relatively well-lit. Good for short distance walks/runs, but the area is probably too small for longer-distance sessions.

    131 lbs, 32% body fat

    December 06, 2005

    Lisa: Pre-training, Day 1

    This morning was officially the first day of pre-training for the marathon. Thirty minutes of walking at a moderate pace, so no big deal. We were supposed to meet at the Skyline HS track at 6 am, but unfortunately I was the only one who actually showed up. Not an auspicious start, LADIES. I got in to the track with no problem, but it was pretty dark and covered with a thin layer of crunchy snow. Luckily students started trickling in to the nearby buildings not long after I got there, so I didn't feel too freaked out about being alone in the dark in the middle of an empty field next to a deserted park and a gully. I don't know if the track is going to be a great place for us to train this winter, but I did notice there was a fairly well-lit sidewalk around the practice field that looked like it had been cleared. That path might be worth checking out. Anyway, I got around the track five times in 30 minutes at my "moderate" pace. My blue warm-up pants aren't remotely insulating, but the rest of my outfit kept me warm enough, especially once I got going. I did wear my parka over my fleecy jacket. Next time I am definitely bringing my iPod. I had Madonna's Like a Prayer stuck in my head the whole time.

    132.5 lbs, 33% body fat

    December 04, 2005

    Lisa: All Geared Up

    I have been shopping around for the last few weeks, trying to find affordable running gear. Here are the basic outfits I came up with. The sports bras and tops are from Target, as are two of the pairs of pants. The other two pairs are from ShopKo. No cotton! Apparently, cotton is evil (at least as far as running in winter is concerned). Also, I refuse to wear those hideous running tights, unless someone gives me a really good reason why I have to.

    I also wanted to make sure I had several options for different weather. I already had the green shorts...

    and I had the windbreaker, too.

    I found some good running shoes at the Nike outlet. The heels have some kind of spacey looking spring-esque cylinders, but the shoes feel pretty comfy. I'll give them a whirl. I got three different kinds of socks at Target, since I had no idea what I would like.

    I already had this fleecy jacket from Old Navy that I think will work for staying warm, but I splurged on new gloves and a headband made from some special hi-tech material. They are just for runners, and they better be frickin' awesome.

    So, I think I am all set! I hope I will be prepared for weather contingencies, etc. I'm sure as it gets warmer I'll have to get more shorts. Anyway, pre-training starts on Tuesday. Here's our schedule (a Word document) if anyone is interested.

    November 19, 2005

    Lisa: Save the date

    I am going to run the Salt Lake City marathon on June 3rd, 2006. This book, which I found through Pamie and Laura, says one of the first steps is to tell people I'm planning to do it. I guess it's an accountability thing. ANYWAY, I am going to RUN a MARATHON. I know, it's blowing my mind too. Training starts December 6!