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So what have I been doing post-Boston?? Here’s an update!

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After I wrote my Boston Marathon race recap on April 24 I took about a month off from writing. Often I tried sitting down to write but the words just came out all jumbly. It was as if too much was going on in my head at once and I couldn’t think straight let alone write something coherent and purposeful.

I recently noticed that during this quiet time the website had over 1,900 hits with zero new content. Then when I finally posted this past Tuesday 438 readers checked in on the site in a single day. Wow. Just wow. Thank you. Thank you for continuing to check in even when I was shutting you out.

By now the Boston Marathon is a faded month old memory. A valuable distraction from my circumstances and a wonderful carrot hanging in the distance, marathon training served its purpose to get me through the hardest six months of my life. So now what? No marathon to train for. No current coach watching my runs. No training plan to adhere to. No house to tend to or garden to grow. (Ha! Let’s be honest, I’m not much of the gardener anyways.)

So what on God’s green earth have I been doing since Boston??? I’ll tell you what- I’ve been doing going to do whatever I feel like doing. If I want to run, I run. If I want to take a day off, I relax. If I want to swim, I swim. Okay so I haven’t swam yet, but the point is that I could if I wanted to! After Boston I….

 

…took four days fully off then started running every other day (or every third day) for a week. 

In hindsight I should have taken more time off. I felt like I needed  to get out there and run, but the reality is that I should have just gone for a walk. It really stinks to take time off post race and feel like you’re losing so much precious fitness. I caved to the devil on my shoulder and ran- 25 short minutes- but I did run sooner than I intended to. I will admit that I regret this decision to run so soon. My body really needed 1-2 FULL WEEKS OFF to completely heel up and recover. How do I know this? My right hamstring still feels a little tighter than it should and my knees are a little more sore than usual.  Ten to fourteen days off post big marathon is how I’ve always been coached and it’s how I coach my own athletes. Bottom line: I know better. Now, I really do know better!

 

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…stopped training and started running again.

I love coach Beth from The Run Formula.  We have been through so many races and training days together that we’re like a mother-daughter duo. I always want to rebel and push harder and run farther and she really tries to not say, “I TOLD YOU SO!!!” when my mistakes come back to bite me. 🙂 Regardless right now I have so much stress in my life that I just can’t train. I can’t devote the mental energy to training the way I want to train so for now I am on my own!

Right now I don’t follow a training plan! I’m just out there running however far or fast I feel like running. I still schedule out my runs- otherwise they might not get done. Over the past few weeks I have been running 30-33 miles a week and I feel great! I aim to run FOUR DAYS out of the week with two of the days being 6-8 miles, one day being about 4-5 and the last day is my long run day at 10-12 miles. Perfecto! I haven’t been focusing on pace and rather have just been getting out there to enjoy the sun, sky and fresh air :).

Chances are that I’ll come crawling back to Beth mid-June, but right now I just need time. I just need time for my life to settle down a little bit before I commit to training for my next big race: the Baystate Half Marathon in October. 

 

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Time to focus on the fundamentals: strength training with an emphasis on legs, core and back!! I might run at a decent clip, but my hamstrings and abductors are WEAK! Giddy up! We’ve got work to do!!

…. started strength training AT LEAST twice a week.

One of my primary goals post Boston was to commit to strength training twice a week. Due to the move/child care/etc on days where I was scheduled to both lift and run I often just ran and skipped the lift. Once in a while- not a big deal. Skipping out on lifting altogether for about 3-4 months? No bueno my friends, no bueno. There I’m back at the gym and lifting twice a week. First and foremost with these workouts I want to be consistent because consistency is king when it comes to healthy living. I have been focusing on the following: core, back, leg machines, arms and did I say core?
Hello planks! Evil side plank dips!! And muahahahah super duper evil plank jacks!!! Don’t know what I’m talking about? Look it up. Do it. Thank me later.

 

…. did a HARD tempo run and realized that I’m a bonehead and needed more time to recover post-Boston before dropping the hammer. Come on Kass, practice what you preach! Doh! 

Last week I idiotically thought that it would be a good time to do a tempo workout. Bad Kass, no biscuit! I wasn’t wearing my heart rate monitor, but it’s safe to say that my heart rate during the tempo was a solid 10-15 beats above where it should have been. Why did I do this 2×10 min tempo workout @ 6:55 pace? Because I’m impatient. How did I know it was the wrong thing to do? Because the body needed to focus on running easy for 4-6 weeks post Boston, NOT running random tempo workouts at a zone 3 pace. Doh! Exhibit B why I benefit from a coach (A was running too soon post race).

 

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Laura and Flower at the 2016 Run for Charlotte 5k/10k race in Braintree, MA.

… have gone to several of my athletes races and have watched them PR, kick ass and HAVE FUN!! 

Outside of my person run game I have been having a BLAST working with my 15 one-on-one coaching athletes from near and far to hone their own running skills!!! You guys are the absolute best!! I am incredibly fortunate to have been chosen to take this running journey with athletes as far as San Diego, Delaware, Florida and several in my own Boston backyard!

Within the past month I have helped Molly prepare for her ClifBar Mountain to Beach marathon that is NEXT WEEKEND, watched Flower and Mark conquer their first 10Ks EVER, supported Laura as she took FIVE WHOLE MINUTES off of her 5k time and even cheered on Bree who peeled SIX MINUTES off of her half marathon PR at the OC Half Marathon in SoCal a few weeks back. Whoa! My runners have been busy!! I actually started to cry when I watched Flower, Laura and the man I thought was Mark (whoops, I was cheering for the wrong dude, my bad) cross the finish line at their respective races. What an utterly amazing experience! Whether it’s couch to 5k training or working to improve your marathon time I’m game!

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… have had an AWESOME time just being a mom and playing with Lillian 🙂

Due to the child care arrangements with Lillian’s father she now spends one full week with me and then one full week with him. It’s incredibly difficult, but anything less than 100% of time with my daughter is difficult. Please keep your opinions of our agreement to yourself as we are trying to figure out what can work for us for now. Regardless of the tough stuff, when I am with Lillian my heart feels alive. We cuddle up on the couch, play dress up, do each other’s hair and make up and bake A LOT of cookies together. I love her so incredibly much and she told me that she loves me 100, cause that’s a lot. I’ll take any morsel of her that I can get even if it comes with what feels like 30+ hours of the same Dora the Explorer episode on repeat. My mini is the absolute best!!

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One more pic for good measure <3 my mini. Baking muffins!

Running. Working. Mommying. Yep, life is good.

 

Oh, and I’m running a 10k tomorrow, the Strawberry Shortcake 10K in Plympton, MA :). Why? For fun, that’s why! I haven’t specifically trained for it. I have no clue how I’ll do, but you sure as hell know that I’m going to run my heart out!! Fingers crossed the hamstring holds up.

 

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Yea, I’ve done A LOT of baking lately… it’s aweeeeeeeeesome! 🙂 COOKIES!!

 

And on that note I’m going to go bake banana bread, cause why not?

Never stop running,

The Lone Runner

 

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I’ve also been hanging out with Snowball who gets more evil with each passing day. Exhibit A: she hides UNDER the bed covers and double paws with her claws when you get close!!! PURE EVIL! Pretty wild Saturday night I must say so myself. 

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