Sunday, May 24, 2009

TNT + My New Running Attitude

Since this is a running blog after all, I figure I should get back to that subject.

I have been so busy lately, that I haven't really had the time to sit down and think about my new marathon training goals for this summer, so while I have nothing better to do today, I thought I would take the time.

If you're new here, I just finished my first marathon on May 2nd in a pretty slow/sustained/whatever time of 5:01. I have since signed up for the Marine Corps Marathon on October 25th through Team in Training to try and beat that time by about 30 minutes as well as to raise some much needed funds for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society. I have already raised $537 towards my $4,000 fundraising goal! (My minimum amount I have to raise by August 23rd is $3,500...but my personal goal is to beat that by $500.)

While I was out of town last week on business, I missed our TNT kick-off meeting Tuesday night, so I made sure to find out if we had our first "long" run this Sunday morning...I was told that we didn't. Of course we actually did, which I found out this afternoon when I got an email recapping the run. Way to start off on the crappiest foot ever with my TNT team!

Oh well, I will be there Tuesday night! If you're not familiar with Team in Training, it basically works like this:
  • In exchange for raising money for the Leukuemia & Lymphoma Society, each runner trains for a distance event with trained coaches as well as their other team mates.
  • The fundraising minimum is a lot, and varies by event. For the Marine Corps, the minimum is $3,500.
  • Each team meets twice a week; once on Tuesday night for either a shorter run or a clinic of some sort (this coming week is a shoe clinic at a local running store), and Sunday morning for the weekly long run. (Of course the rest of the week you run on your own.)
  • Each runner gets a training schedule (I think this varies based on running experience/pace/goal marathon time, etc. but honestly I'm not sure since I have missed the first two meetings).
  • TNT pays each runner's way to the race, including airfare, hotel and other expenses.
  • They don't only do marathons, you can also train with TNT for Olympic distance triathlons and century bike rides.
  • Although I can certainly train on my own, I think this TNT experience will A) be a lot of fun! B) make me feel as if I am a part of something larger than my own selfish self and C) be a way to make new running friends!
So yeah, I am excited. I plan on following their training schedule as much as possible, but I'm sure I will be tweaking it here and there. I still plan to stick to my 4-5 days a week running schedule, that looks something like this:
  • Sunday: Long run
  • Monday: Off/cross train/abs
  • Tuesday: Hills (4 -6 miles)/TNT run
  • Wednesday: Mid-week long run ( 5-10 miles)/abs
  • Thursday: Speedwork @ the track (3-6+ miles)
  • Friday: Off/cross-train/abs
  • Saturday: Off/cross-train/short run (3-5 miles)
This time around, I also plan on adding yoga & strength training to the mix more frequently. This week, I am going to visit a few yoga studios & gyms to decide what I want to do with that. I really enjoyed working out in a gym last week and I would love to be able to afford to do that more regularly. I might actually be doing some yoga tomorrow if I can find a studio that's open!

My time goal for the marathon this time around is anything sub 4:30.

I was sort of shooting for that last time, but obviously, that didn't happen. It didn't happen for a few reasons, one being that I didn't train based on time, I just went out there and ran. Sure I tried to keep a good, even pace and to keep negative splits, but I wasn't really bothered if I didn't, I just wanted to finish. Another reason I didn't hit my goal was because I clearly had not done enough hill training! North Carolina ain't the Rockies, but it was definitely more hilly than my training ground of below sea-level, flat as a pancake, Charleston! I was also kind of lazy out there, and once I took my first walk break, my mental toughness was was all run/walk from that point on.

So...other than sticking to my training schedule over the next 5 months or so, I also want to maintain a few things:
  1. I will not skip speedwork or hills, period.
  2. I will strength train at the minimum two times a week.
  3. I will work on my abs three non-consecutive days of the week.
  4. I will never skip a long run. (This only happened once last time, and it messed me up for almost a month!)
  5. I will be aware of my goal pace for each run, and try to stick to it as much as possible.
  6. I will ride my bike and/or cross-train 2-3 times a week.
  7. I will take up yoga.
  8. I will continue to eat healthy :)
  9. I will continue to drink a crap load of water.
  10. I will run happy!
So there you go! I think that if I can stick to these above things, I will improve drastically as a runner. Everyone is different, and every runner has different goals. For me, my first marathon was all about finishing. This time, I'm coming back for a rematch with myself and I am determined to kick the crap out of the runner I was on May 2nd!

I may also do a sprint triathlon at some point this summer. If I do decide on that, then I guess I need to start swimming, huh??

In addition to my athletic goals, my professional life is crazy hectic these days. I am going through my second and then final tests over the next few months, and after that happens, I will be moving slowly into a new role at my office. It is scary and it's not the easiest, but I think it will be all worth it in the end! So needless to say my life is about to get a whole lot busier.

This weekend has been great so far! I went to the Farmer's Market yesterday morning with friends, and then we went out on their boat for most of the day. It was nice, and I got a little sunburnt...oddly I think from the Farmer's Market...wouldn't you know it.

Today has been lazy and great. I made some suuuhhhweeet BBQ pulled chicken tonight that couldn't have been more easy! (Thanks to Erica for the idea & recipe!) I will post pics later on.

Hope everyone has a fantastic Memorial Day tomorrow, and don't forget to thank our men and women in uniform, as well as to remember those who have given the ultimate sacrifice for our freedom.



  1. Great goals for your marathon!! I think you will be able to knock 4:30 out of the water!! Can't wait to hear how it goes meeting your team mates on Tues!

  2. Kristin,

    Thanks for remembering those who serve our country tomorrow.

    TNT will give you the purpose of something larger than yourself.

    You will meet some amazing people along the way.

    Thanks so much for what you are doing to provide support and hope to everyone that has blood cancer.

    Good luck and have fun.

    Go TEAM!!!

  3. Congratulations on signing up with TNT. I hear only good things about them. I'm sure you will make your goal. ;)
    It will be fun tagging along for your training.

  4. I have been following your blog since you ran your first marathon, it is great to read about the journey you are on and I love that you have such specific goals! Enjoy your training for your next marathon! :) I imagine it would be fun to train with a group of people.

  5. I'm so excited that you'll be doing MCM and that you're doing it with TNT. Honestly, the fundraising amount has scared me away from it so far, but it looks like you're not having problems with that!

    You've got some great goals and great plans, and I can't wait to see you accomplish all of it!!

  6. I'm excited for your second round of marathon training! I got the training schedule today and am excited to compare it with the Higdon one I'm toying around with.

  7. I'm excited to see how the next few months unfold for you! The second marathon is much different than the first since you have an idea of what is coming. Doesn't make it much easier, but at least you can tell yourself, "Hey, I've done this before!"

  8. I like hearing about your training! One of my good friends did TnT for her first marathon and really enjoyed the experience (although the massive fundraising is the reason I can't do it....but I think people who can are AWESOME!)

    I can't believe they don't have Mojo bars where you live!! Girl, I'm sending you some (because I need to stock up as well). E-mail me your address. :)