Friday, December 8, 2017

Why I Registered for the Boston Marathon

What: The 122nd Boston Marathon

Where: Boston, MA

When: April 16, 2018

If you’ve had any running-related conversation with me in the past year, you know I was 100% set on not running another marathon ever in my life.  I ran Chicago in 2012 to check 26.2 miles off my bucket list.  I decided to train to race Houston in 2016 to see what I was capable of but I got injured and signed up for Miami in 2017 for redemption.  I accomplished my goal in Miami and was completely satisfied with retiring from the distance.

“But what about Boston?”  

I am not made to run marathons.  A marathon is not what defines you as a runner. The Boston Marathon is not what defines you as a runner.  In fact, I’ve always thought people who run Boston (and train for Boston in the Northeast) are crazy.  I’m a Buffalo girl.  I love New York.  I don’t even really like the city of Boston.

“Boston could be like your victory lap!”

You mean a 26.2 mile victory lap after 16 weeks of training in the freezing, cold winter?

Ok maybe I’m crazy too but the more I think about it… do I really want to let my fear and stubbornness get in the way of an opportunity of a lifetime?

It look a lot of internal debate and motivation self-talk but I did it.  On September 15th when registration opened for my qualifying window, I submitted my entry for the Boston Marathon.

So here we go. These are my top 10 reasons why I registered for the Boston Marathon:

1.  I qualified. 
My goal in Miami was to run 26.2 miles at 8:00 pace which is 3 hours and 30 minutes.  I wasn’t focused on a BQ but reaching my personal goal would put me 5 seconds under the Boston qualifying time for my age group.  Yeah, that’s cool.  But it was never my motivation.

2.  Peer pressure can be a bitch.
Enough said.  You all know who you are.

It’s one of oldest and most prestigious running races in the world.  There is so much history surrounding the Boston Marathon.  It truly would be an honor to run.  And even more of an honor to run as a qualifier.

4.  I like even numbers…
2018 is on the 16th and is the 120th race.  I will be 32 years old and it will be my 4th marathon.

5.  …but 7 is actually my favorite number.
I qualified by 7 seconds.  Was that a sign?

6.  You get a really cool jacket.

7.  You get to eat all the carbs.

8.  I got big goals and I cannot lie.
Actually my goal for Boston is to survive.  Flat courses are my thing and Boston is not.  I will probably run lower mileage in training than my previous marathons and focus less on speed work and more on strength training.  I want to get stronger and FEEL GOOD crossing the finish line.

9.  Two words: Social media.
I’m actually only doing it for the Instagram pics.  (Follow me @jenskiba!)  I also figured it will give me something to do and blog about for those 4 lousy months after Christmas.

10.  As the kids used to say… YOLO.
Let’s do this.  I’m not getting any younger.  Training starts in 2 weeks on Christmas Day!

Monday, December 4, 2017

Weekly Roundup 11.20-11.26 & 11.27-12.3

Another 2 weeks has come and gone.  And can you believe it is already December?

Last week got off to a slow start.  My ankle was still not happy after stepping in the pothole so I asked Maddie to tape it on Monday at work.  With holiday hours at the gym and a minor injury, I decided to take the week off from lifting to heal then ease back into running before I get back to work. 

On Wednesday I used the elliptical for what seemed like the longest 30 minutes of my life!  The good news was that my ankle felt fine so on Thursday morning (Thanksgiving morning!) Georgie and I got up and headed to the trails for our own little Turkey Trot before heading to Falmouth.  We explored a little further down the trail then our last time out there totaling just about 3.5 miles!

I worked on Black Friday but left at 2pm for another 3.5 mile run—this time solo.  Saturday I dragged Georgie out for a mile, which she fought the whole way.  I got home and realized her harness had been rubbing under her arms and she had a big open wound.  I also remembered that last year when we were running together she didn’t wear a harness for that reason.  Terrible mother I am!  Anyways, I dropped her off and home and went back out for 7 miles on my own.

This week I ran more and progressed my lifting routine with a series of 3 new workouts from Greg.  I didn’t pack my outdoor running clothes on Monday and smelly man was on the treadmill when I got out of work so I ended up doing my strength training first then went to the treadmill.  By the time I got to my run, I was exhausted.  Now I know why I run first.

I had to work an extra long day on Tuesday so I didn’t get to Run Club again this week.  Boo.  Wednesday was beautiful weather day and I really wanted to run outside so I put my running clothes on under my work clothes when I went home for lunch so I could have a quick turnaround after work.  I got out at 4 and the sun set at 4:14.  Ugh.  I ran the half mile loop at work around and around and around for another 3 miles.

I was not in the mood to run on Friday and I put it off most of the day.  G joined me for a mile then ran 3 on my own.  That night I made a solo trip to the gym and had the place to myself.  Woo hoo Friday night!

My 8 mile long run was scheduled for Saturday and I went back and forth where to run.  I wanted to go to Falmouth but our Cape Cod Rehab Christmas Party was that night and I didn’t want to rush or waste time driving anywhere.  So I ventured out of my neighborhood, crossed busy Route 28 and ran the streets of Cotuit.  It was my first time long running that direction and I loved it.  Pretty views and I passed a lot of people and they were all so friendly.  A little girl in a stroller yelled to her mom, “That runner is fast!”

Other highlights:

·      I received my “Boston Bound” postcard in the mail.  It’s official!

Monday 11.20.17
Burdenko H2O
30’ spinning with Leslie
9,634 steps

Tuesday 11.21.17
Taught spin class
10,657 steps

Wednesday 11.22.17
30’ elliptical
30’ spinning with Leslie
12,348 steps

Thursday 11.23.17
Happy Thanksgiving!
3.46 miles with G (36:52)
13,399 steps

Friday 11.24.17
3.48 miles (27:20)
12,733 steps

Saturday 11.25.17
0.93 miles with G (10:00)
6 miles (44:21)
17,439 steps

Sunday 11.26.17
Taught spin class
Burdenko H2O
13,679 steps

Monday 11.27.17
3 treadmill miles (23:00)
Greg’s New Workout #1
30’ spinning with Leslie
14,840 steps

Tuesday 11.28.17
Taught spin class
Power Water
15,486 steps

Wednesday 11.29.17
3 miles (23:01)
Greg’s New Workout #2
13,746 steps

Thursday 11.30.17
Power Water
13,275 steps

Friday 12.1.17
0.95 miles with G (9:38)
3 miles (23:08)
Greg’s New Workout #3
14,783 steps

Saturday 12.2.17
8 miles (1:01:39)
TBD steps

Sunday 12.3.17
Taught spin class
Burdenko H2O
TBD steps

Last week’s mileage: 14 miles
This week’s mileage: 18 miles
Last week’s G mileage: 4.5 miles
This week’s G mileage: 1 mile
November Totals: 63 miles
December Totals: 12 miles
2017 Totals: 688 miles

Wednesday, November 22, 2017

Weekly Roundup 11.6-11.12 & 11.13-11.19

After running Falmouth in the Fall, I took it easy last week and got in only 10 total miles.  I took Monday off but I went to run club on Tuesday night.  It was dark and cold but I ran with the boys.  Chris made his return to run club after working in Texas for 6 months.

Wednesday I hit the treadmill for an easy three.  I worked Friday then went for a short run with G before a short run by myself.

This week was a little more eventful.  I treadmilled again on Monday but decided to run outside on Wednesday.  I wanted to run 4 miles but worked until 4:00 and the sun set at 4:21.  Long story short—I ran pretty fast.  It felt good though and the post-run view was beautiful.

On Friday Georgie and I went back to Cotuit and ran our new beach to beach and back route.  This time it was a lot cooler and windier but when we got to the beach at the half way point, it was totally deserted so we ran down on the sand for awhile.  Almost 3 miles meant a post-run 3 hour nap for G.

I rounded out the week with an 8 miler through New Seabury on Saturday.  This was my longest distance run since July and overall I had a great run with some awesome views.  I did manage to step in a pothole and twist my ankle about a mile and a half in but it didn’t hurt until I woke up the next morning.  It’s always something…

Other highlights:

·      I’m still lifting!  6 weeks in and I’m totally committed.  Next week I plan to go easy to rest my ankle but after Thanksgiving I will be progressing my routine.  YEAH!

Monday 11.6.17
Burdenko H2O
Greg’s Workout #1 + 8 assisted pull ups
11,565 steps

Tuesday 11.7.17
Marathon Sports Run Club! 3.25 miles with Kyle, Chris & Infa (30:00)
Taught spin class
17,506 steps

Wednesday 11.8.17
3 treadmill miles (23:02)
Greg’s Workout #2 + 8 assisted pull ups
15,501 steps

Thursday 11.9.17
Taught spin class
Power Water
15,218 steps

Friday 11.10.17
9,649 steps

Saturday 11.11.17
1.48 miles with G (14:09)
2.25 miles (16:24)
Greg’s Workout #3
13,428 steps

Sunday 11.12.17
Taught spin class
Burdenko H2O
16,770 steps

Monday 11.13.17
3 treadmill miles (22:24)
Greg’s Workout #1 + 10 assisted pull ups
13,171 steps

Tuesday 11.14.17
Taught spin class
10,996 steps

Wednesday 11.15.17
4 miles (28:14)
Greg’s Workout #2
30’ spinning with Leslie
15,450 steps

Thursday 11.16.17
Taught spin class
Power Water
13,042 steps

Friday 11.17.17
2.89 miles with G (27:22)
Greg’s Workout #3
12,437 steps

Saturday 11.18.17
8 miles (59:46)
18,045 steps

Sunday 11.19.17
Taught spin class
Burdenko H2O
14,479 steps

Last week’s mileage: 10 miles
This week’s mileage: 18 miles
Last week’s G mileage: 1.5 miles
This week’s G mileage: 3 miles
November Totals: 43 miles

2017 Totals: 656 miles

Friday, November 17, 2017

Get The Most Out Of Your Personal Training Sessions

Below is a blog post I wrote for the Mashpee Fitness Center. To see the original, visit the Mashpee Fitness blog.

Personal training is an option for members who need extra motivation or guidance to get through a workout.  It’s also a way to learn new exercises and progress your fitness routine.

Working with a trainer is great but are you getting the most out of your training sessions?

Set Clear Goals

It’s important that you and your trainer are on the same page.  It’s also important that you set clear goals so your trainer can build the appropriate program for you. Think SMART goals: Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic, Timely.  Goal setting should be worked into your first appointment and revisited during each session.

Arrive Early

I say this over and over again to my clients… warm up before your session!  Showing up late not only cuts into your training time but now the trainer has to incorporate a warm up into the routine leaving not much time for actual exercise.  Show up early to get in a little cardio, dynamic stretches and/or foam roll so you’re ready to go when the session begins.

Speak Up

Communication should go both ways.  Ask questions.  Let your trainer know how you’re feeling and exactly what you’re feeling.  If something isn’t right, don’t be afraid to speak up.  We appreciate your feedback and honestly!

Do Your Homework

You can’t just show up to your once a week training appointment and expect to see progress.  Your trainer can work with you to build a weekly plan but it’s ultimately up to you to commit by exercising on your own, eating right and recovering well.

Bring A Buddy

Still struggling with motivation?  Find a friend with similar fitness levels and goals to team up with.  They can help you get out the door on days you may consider cancelling and help push you harder during the workout.  One-on-one personal training can get expensive so ask about most cost-effective group personal training rates.

Attitude Is Everything

Everyone has their own reason for working out but if you’re not invested in your own health and fitness, you’re never going to get results.  A positive attitude is key along with patience, commitment, consistency, and hard work.

Monday, November 13, 2017

Weekly Roundup 10.23-10.29 & 10.30-11.5

The past few weeks have been busy!

I have been working out strength training 3x per week.  I feel awesome.  I even recruited Craig and his wife Niki for motivation.  We spent a Friday night at the gym together.  It was actually a lot of fun.

Running has also been good.  Still no pressure, just having fun—but I did manage to run 18 miles both weeks.  

Georgie and I took a field trip to Cotuit where we ran from Loop Beach to Oregon Beach and back.  It was a BEAUTIFUL Friday in November and we enjoyed every minute of it.

I also made it to a Run Club and ran Falmouth in the Fall.  You can read my full race report here:

Other highlights:

·      I spent last weekend with Cape Cod Rehab at the Cape Cod Marathon Expo.  My dad ran the half that Saturday and I was able to time it perfectly to see him run.  He later thanked me and said he needed the boost.

Monday 10.23.17
5 miles (37:01)
Burdenko H2O
Greg’s Workout #1
17,234 steps

Tuesday 10.24.17
Marathon Sports Run Club! 3.25 miles (27:57)
Taught spin class
14,990 steps

Wednesday 10.25.17
Greg’s Workout #3
7,320 steps

Thursday 10.26.17
Taught spin class
Power Water
13,792 steps

Friday 10.27.17
1.58 miles with G (14:58)
2.4 miles (18:41)
Greg’s Workout #2
17,324 steps

Saturday 10.28.17
1.99 miles with G (18:26)
3.75 miles (27:27)
17,244 steps

Sunday 10.29.17
Taught spin class
Burdenko H2O
14,947 steps

Monday 10.30.17
2 treadmill miles (15:49)
0.98 miles with G (9:37)
Greg’s Workout #1
11,735 steps

Tuesday 10.31.17
Happy Halloween!
Taught spin class. The playlist: Halloween Spin Playlist 2014
11,534 steps

Wednesday 11.1.17
3 miles (22:00)
Greg’s Workout #2
14,065 steps

Thursday 11.2.17
Taught spin class
Power Water
15,854 steps

Friday 11.3.17
2.08 miles with G (22:09)
Greg’s Workout #3
14,704 steps

Saturday 11.4.17
0.97 miles with G (8:56)
2 miles (14:35)
10,312 steps

Sunday 11.5.17
Falmouth in the Fall 7 miles (48:15)
16,196 steps

Last week’s mileage: 18 miles
This week’s mileage: 18 miles
Last week’s G mileage: 3.5 miles
This week’s G mileage: 4 miles
October Totals: 75 miles
November Totals: 15 miles

2017 Totals: 628 miles