3k PR: 10:17

Last night, I ran a PR in the 3k race!  And I haven’t been able to walk since…


Enjoy this Snapchat

Here’s the recap.

In the days leading up to the race, I slept like crap.  My runs felt like crap.  My body in general felt like crap.  Also, I had a vicious accounting midterm on Wednesday night.

Confidence booster, am I right? 😉

But I tried not to think about it.  On Tuesday and Wednesday, I focused on extra recovery and eating all of the carbs.

Breakfast (8 am): oatmeal with almond milk, egg whites, fruit, cinnamon, ginger, turmeric (which is why it’s yellow), peanut butter, and plain Greek yogurt.


Looks like a hot mess but so dang delicious

Mid-morning (10 am): some coffee, mostly decaf

I did a light upper body lift in the weight room, went for a 2-mile shakeout, and went to the training room for my normal treatment before getting lunch.  On the shakeout run, I noticed that my body felt much improved from the previous two days! 🙂

Lunch (12:30 pm): grilled chicken with honey mustard, sweet potato, steamed carrots, tomatoes, olive oil
Mid-afternoon (3:30): cinnamon raisin bagel with almond butter and banana


I watched Scandal, read “Obabakoak” for my Non-Castilian Spanish Literature class, and wasted time before making the very long 15-second journey to the locker room at 5 pm.

Pre-race (5:30): half a Picky bar

My teammate and I warmed up for 20 minutes, did drills and strides, and checked in to get our hip numbers.  We were both in the fast heat, towards the back.  It was a little chilly, but not too bad.

Both of us have been battling injuries recently, so this was both of our first races back.  Our coach told us to hang on to the back of the train for 800 meters and then start picking people off.  Quite a change from last year! (Throwback to telling this petrified freshman to “go through at your high school mile PR.”)

For this race, I honestly just wanted to go out there and race.  To not think about times or splits or paces at all.  I just wanted to compete.

Since I was racing unattached, I wore a purple tank top and buns.  Also, racing unattached means that the school sports photographer does not take pictures of you, so here is a horrible-quality Snapchat video screenshot.  I’m the purple and black blur with the yellow spikes.  You’re welcome 😉


The gun went off, and we settled in right where we needed to be.  It was so exciting to finally be in a race again!  The first few laps went by pretty quickly (around 80 seconds per lap, or 5:20 mile pace).  While I tried to keep the pace up throughout the second half of the race, I fell off my teammate a bit.  I wasn’t completely in the “race mode” mindset during the last 800, and I did not have a good kick.  I didn’t have a kick at all, actually.  That also stems from not being able to do speedwork or strides for the past few months 😉

I looked at the scoreboard clock with 300 to go, and it read 9:15ish.  That’s where I got complacent and thought, “well, I’m going to PR no matter what!”  and didn’t really try to kick it into the finish.  Three women passed me in the last 200 meters, but I finished in 10:17, which was 5 seconds faster than last year’s best.  I definitely had a little more in the tank at the end!


post-race gimp squad!

Unfortunately, right after the race ended, my left foot and bunion immediately tightened up so badly that I could not walk.  I tried to go for a cool down, but it was excruciating, and I ended up on the bike for a little while.  The pain was so horrible that I was in tears.  I iced forever, did Compex, elevated, took ibuprofen, and was still completely unable to sleep last night because of the discomfort.  It’s just as bad this morning 😦 and I’m sleep-deprived, so I’m cranky.

Post-race: plain Greek yogurt, Cosi pesto chicken sandwich, orange, and dark chocolate

So I really don’t know what I’m going to do for the rest of the season.  On the one hand, I just PR-ed off of no speedwork and minimal mileage and lots of cross training. (Proof that cross training works!!)  My aerobic capacity is there.  I feel like with a few more weeks under my belt, I can run a great 5k.  On the other hand, if this horrible pain is the consequence of a 3k, what happens when I race a 5k??


We’ll see.  I’m about to go swim for an hour or so- no running for me today! again- and then help out at the meet.  My roommate is running her first track 5k tonight, and I’m so excited to cheer her on!  Also, two of my teammates raced their first 10k last night and absolutely crushed it.  They ran 33:36 and 34:35.  Holy crap.  When they finished, it was so amazing and surreal and unbelievable that I actually cried.



It’s happening.  After 4.5 months of not racing and inconsistent training and foot pain and more cross training than I’ve ever done, I’m finally getting the opportunity to race the 3k tomorrow!

Of course, all the usual doubts are floating through my mind.  I’ve hardly done a stride in the past couple months.  Monday’s track workout was rough.  My body has been hurting for the past several days.  I’ve been stressed out from a vicious accounting midterm that I just finished an hour ago.  Have I been overeating?  I didn’t sleep enough last night.  I think I’m in good shape, and so does everyone else, but what if this objective track race reveals that I’m actually a slug?  Should I expect to PR after all this time?  All the usual things.

But.  BUT.  What I want to keep in mind is that I get to race tomorrow.  Not everyone gets this opportunity.  Who cares if I don’t PR? (Nobody but me, and maybe my coach.)  Who cares if I go out too hard and die?  I’ve stepped foot on the track like five times cumulatively since December, and it’s probably going to show.  I’m nowhere near as sharp as I’d like to be.  My pre-race rituals and mentality are rusty.  My feet are not used to spikes anymore.  I can’t even get up on my toes, which is a problem and will probably put a limit on how fast I can run/kick.  But I get to go out there tomorrow and run as hard as I can and see where I’m at!  And I’m so excited!

This was just a quick post, but I wanted to get it out there.  If I have a good race tomorrow, I’ll be thrilled and grateful and have some decisions to make regarding the rest of the season and my feet.  If I have a bad race, hey, it happens all the time.  There is more to me than my identity as a runner.  There is more to every runner than their identity as a runner.


Life and sadness and frustration and positivity…

Happy Saturday night!  I’ve lost count of how many times I’ve stopped and started versions of this post.  Isn’t it funny how it’s easier to write about running when running is going well?


Overnight oats in the training room for the millionth day in a row

So: the foot pain.  It’s hard to believe that this has been going on for almost three months.  It seems like I haven’t trained consistently since January.  The past two weeks have been exponentially worse; I even developed extensor tendonitis because I was compensating for the toe/bunion pain in my stride and foot strike.  After about 43 miles and some cross training the week before last, last week’s training included 7 normal miles, 15 miles on the Alter-G, and 290 minutes of cross training.  This week included 37.5 miles and about 205 minutes of cross training.  Today’s run/bike combination was horrible.  Can you see the continuation of the mileage rollercoaster?

Every single day involves at least one trip to the training room for warm whirlpool, rolling, laser, mobility, ultrasound, ice, etc.  I’ve been biking and swimming ridiculous distances.  Each training session is played by ear; my coach will text me saying, “How much pain are you in?  Do you want to work out today?”

I met with an orthopedist on Thursday, but unfortunately we didn’t come up with any other solutions.  “Yep, according to the x-rays, your bunions are pretty severe.  You can live in the training room for the rest of your athletic career, or if the pain is getting too bad to the point where you think it’s limiting your ability to train, you might want to consider bunion surgery.”
I’m also in the middle of the dental implant process, feeling hideous, and there are insurance issues and family medical/emotional problems.
As you can imagine, last week was filled with some breakdowns…
The combination of training uncertainty and constant pain is really taking its toll mentally and physically.  Also, getting up at the crack of dawn every day makes me feel really isolated from the “normal college student” lifestyle of sleeping in past 6 am, staying up later than 10 pm, and having some semblance of fun.  Not that I want the normal college student lifestyle, but it’s really hard when you can’t relate to anyone.  Most of my teammates don’t have to be in the training room twice a day and wake up at the ass crack of dawn every single day.  My NARP (non-athletic-regular-people) friends stare at me like I have three heads if I mention my daily routine.  I’m sorry for the negativity- I’m just being honest that months of this nonsense is getting to me 😦
I also really do not want to have to go the surgery route.  Bunion surgery takes months to recover from, more months to get back into training, and there’s no guarantee that it’ll even be successful.  As I would have to get the surgery on both feet, I would literally be in a wheelchair, unable to walk, for a month.

Stationary-biking my life away

Okay, now that my emotional rant is (mostly) over, I’m going to try to focus on the positives!  Even though it really sucks not being able to fully do what I love and contribute to my team, it’s so important to keep in mind that life is about more than just running.  Obviously as a collegiate athlete, the majority of your lifestyle revolves around your sport and school.  But there are so many aspects to life that it’s easy to find things that are important outside running!
SO, without further ado, here are some positive things that are happening in life:
  • Recent weather has been absolutely gorgeous.  I went to a nearby creek today to watch the sunset with my roommate, her brother, his roommate, and their dog.  We saw a goldendoodle puppy while we were there!
  • My mom and her husband came down last week, and I went out to brunch with them and we always have the best conversations.
  • We took the recruits to see Beauty and the Beast last week, and even though you know I’m a cynical human being, I’m also addicted to Disney movies and songs.
  • I sat down to the piano for the first time in months and have my heart set on playing Go the Distance 
  • I’m currently writing multiple articles for Spoon University and loving it!
  • The business school is the most beautiful building on campus, and I’m lucky enough to have access to it.
  • The weight room is making me #toostrong 😉
  • Scandal, joggers, and hot lemon water to end the night


Wow, there are so many aspects of life to be grateful for!  School is hard, running is hard, and this crazy schedule of mine is hard.  We shall see if I’m able to race this coming weekend at our big home invitational.  But mindfulness is important.  Here is a cheesy motivational quote, complete with a pug:


Being touristy

In New York,
Concrete jungle where dreams are made of
There’s nothin’ you can’t do


Okay, sorry for the insane cheesiness, but I just got back from three days in New York City!  Two of my friends and I took the bus up on Wednesday and came back a little sooner than we had planned in order to avoid the worst of the snow.  While we didn’t get to do everything we wanted to, it was mostly a blast!  We stayed in the heart of Koreatown, which was definitely interesting.  I woke up earlier than my friends in order to get my training in; unfortunately, I had to do run-bike combinations because of foot pain.  Yikes.  I’m a little frustrated, but at least I can do something!

Highlights of the trip:

We saw the Paramour musical version of Cirque du Soleil on Broadway!  The performance was absolutely mesmerizing.  The acrobatics were intricately dangerous, the singing was phenomenal…oh man.  I’m in love.


We toured Jacques Torres’ new chocolate museum on Hudson Street and even met Jacques Torres himself!  The exhibits included a detailed history of chocolate, chocolate sculpture masterpieces, authentic Mexican hot chocolate (pure cocoa + hot water + spices), and unlimited free samples.  A master chocolatier made dark chocolate ganache-filled truffles right in front of us.  This chocoholic claims that they were the best chocolate I have ever had.



We took the subway to Battery Park and took the ferry to see the Statue of Liberty and tour Ellis Island.  You can sense the legacies of the immigrants that passed through the immigration system.

We went to Molly’s Cupcakes!  I fell in love with the cupcakes and the atmosphere; when we walked into the cheerful yellow shop, Phillip Phillips was playing on the radio. I got the flourless chocolate cupcake with a dulce de leche ganache filling, vanilla bean buttercream frosting, and cocoa powder dusting.  Amazing.

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Other highlights included Black Iron Burger for dinner, an eclectic, socialist bookstore, and aggressive street vendors.  This morning, we kind of just hibernated until our bus arrived because it was snowing very hard.

My body is definitely craving routine, and I don’t even want to think about the schoolwork I’ve been avoiding over break.  I’m having a little anxiety.  But it’s all good.



“Spring” break

Hello from home!  I’m currently on spring break (can somebody inform the weather?), and the respite from schoolwork is working wonders.  I’ve been reading a great book (Room by Emma Donoghue, upon which the 2015 movie is based), wearing groutfits all day, running/cross training, cooking, and watching more TV than I have in what seems like years.  I just ate four black bean brownies for dessert because they’re delicious and I can.  They’re small; it’s fine 😉


Black bean brownies from Chocolate Covered Katie!  I added a bit of ground coffee and topped them with melted chocolate 🙂

Three cheers for helpful Apple tech people and a functional computer!   Yet again, apologies for the prolonged blogging absence.  Morning pool workouts, daily training room appointments, and a non-functional computer have added to this semester’s increased schoolwork demands.  I feel like I’m years behind in updating you all about what’s been going on!


Two weeks ago, I ran 32 miles and cross trained for 250 minutes, which included three swim workouts and zero running workouts.  I felt progressively stronger in the pool and in the weight room.  Foot pain persisted.  I was up at the crack of dawn every day for practice and wonky pool hours.

Last week, I ran 43 miles and cross trained for 120 minutes (a mixture of stationary bike and pool), which included two running workouts and one mini pool workout.  I was in the training room every day both weeks- heating, rolling, and doing foot exercises, joint mobility, laser, and ice.

The first track workout back (2/28) went surprisingly well!  3 mile warm-up, drills, strides, 3×800 with 200 jog (2:52, 2:52, 2:50), lap on turf, 4×400 with 60-90s recovery (80, 78, 78, 77), lap on turf, 4×400 with 90-2:00 recovery, (76, 74, 73, 73), 3 mile cool down.  It was exciting and gratifying to hit those splits; pool workouts really do work to keep your aerobic fitness up!  But I was sore for two days afterwards.

My team wrapped up the indoor season in Boston this past weekend with lots of stellar performances!  We kind of fell apart as a team throughout indoor season due to injury and illness, but I’m hoping to regain some of that cohesiveness as outdoor begins.

On Saturday, I drove out to a park that we used to race at all the time in high school to do my long run.  It was beautiful!  Very windy and cold, but the views and trails couldn’t be beat.IMG_4565.jpg

I think I’ve done a good job listening to my body over the past few weeks and not cramming in too much volume (cross training or running).  My goal is to be more careful than last time while increasing the mileage, and I’m going to try like hell to keep the foot pain and inflammation under control.

Other life stuff

For some reason, last week I had the most intense dessert cravings I’ve had in awhile.  All I wanted at night was ice cream, brownies, and chocolate cake.  So I have been indulging those cravings!  My teammate and I went to go watch the high school state meet and cheer on our respective high schools, and we stopped at Whole Foods afterwards because of course we did 😉  This “Mississippi Mud Bar” was incredible.


On Thursday, I received my acceptance into the business school!!  What a great way to start spring break 🙂  I was feeling very burned out from school- intermediate accounting is kicking my ass- but this served as justification for the grind.  I didn’t mention it in this post , but I applied last semester and was rejected from both the majors and the minors program.  The same weekend I went through a break-up, the business school sent me not one, but two rejection letters.  What a great time 😉  Also, yes, the below picture features the ugly screws I’ve been rocking for the last several weeks.  I cannot wait to get the implants.  Until then, I’m trying to avoid pictures of myself.IMG_4535.jpg


I’ve been hanging out with this guy:IMG_4566.jpg

Made balsamic honey glazed salmon, quinoa, and steamed asparagus with lemon for my family tonight:


The rest of spring break will include a full body massage (so excited!) and a trip to New York before heading back to school.  Then it’s just one short week until (hopefully) my first race since November!  I just want to get a baseline, and as I said before, keep my feet under control 🙂

Time to go finish reading Room!  I will definitely try to post more- now that my computer is working again, hopefully life will be a little easier!  #firstworldproblems…