Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Wednesday Workout Update - With an Apology to GU

My running club had a 9 miler on tap for the half group on Sunday. We met at the later (for us) hour of 7:00 am - it was nice to sleep in a bit! It was still freaking cold, though - 28 degrees. One thing that I struggle with while dressing for these runs is to not overdress. I know that I will warm up really fast once I start running - it's just the time spent before we start running that gets me. Plus, I always start second-guessing my clothing choices as soon as I see anyone wearing more layers than me. But, I got it right on Sunday - never had to strip off any layers, nor did I feel cold once I started running. The gear? From the bottom up (links provided to help you visualize what I wore since for once I didn't think to take a picture):
  • Thorlo Experia merino wool socks - running shoes are well-ventilated and these socks have made the difference between my toes being frozen and being comfortable.
  • Newtons
  • CW-X compression capris - I wanted to try these because my hamstrings and quads have been pretty sore after the long runs. They felt great, but I second-guessed myself when ordering them - I bought the size large when I should have bought a medium - the compression factor plus horror stories of putting them on scared me. They kept me warm enough, though, even though part of my calves were bare. I kept them on for several hours after the run to see if the compression really helped with recovery - I have to say that I think it did.
  • Underarmour UA Tech t-shirt
  • Asics Thermopolis hoody
  • Lucy vest (this was my mom's vest - couldn't find it on any website so it must be pretty old)
  • Helen's gloves :)
  • Mizuno Breath Thermo Cap - with ear flaps. This is new and although Jeff took one look at me and said "I see you've traded fashion for function" it did the trick. My head never felt hot but it kept me warm, and the ear flaps (that you can easily fold up if you need to) were wonderful - not tight, but for the first time in weeks, my ears didn't freeze.
I put all of this out there to show what is working for me - your results may vary. I just know that it's a little confusing with all of the options out there. Runner's World also had a really neat clothing calculator that tells you what to wear in what conditions - check it out here. Because I don't have a running store in my town, I do most of my shopping online. I like because they have free two-day shipping to and from (helpful when things don't fit), and their prices seem to be pretty good. That said, I would pay a few bucks extra to support a local running store if I had that option. And just for the FTC's* benefit, I got nothing for mentioning running warehouse - I just happen to like that company.

I didn't mean for this post to turn into Fashion Friday! So the was cold and I ran fast. Fast being a relative for me, I should say. Really too fast for a nine miler - I have got to get better at doing my long runs at a slower pace. Next week, I'm going to try pacing a couple of women in my running club who probably run around a 12 minute mile - we'll see if that helps. My splits were:

13:21 - oops, can you tell I did a lot of walking for this mile?
12:42 - and this one?

Average pace ended up being 11:39, but according to my running guru, my practice long runs should be slower so I will be able to run faster in the half marathons. Still learning, I am.

I also did a tempo run on Tuesday night with four of my hardcore half ladies - Erica, Cheryl, Tiffani, Julia and I all braved the rain to run in the dark on the local middle school track. With the added challenge of hurdles set up along the first straightaway. Fun times! It actually wasn't horrible, and it did give me an idea of what I need to prepare for, should my next race be rainy. And actually, the worst part was all the raindrops covering my glasses - even wearing a cap didn't help with that. Next rainy run, I'll have to bring some Kleenex in a baggie (to stay dry) so I can periodically wipe my glasses down.

And now, my apology to GU. GU is an energy gel that many runners use during long runs. I have steadfastly avoided even trying the stuff - just the thought of eating a sickeningly sweet gel while running grossed me out. Certain textures give me the heebie-jeebies (like cottage cheese ::shudder::) and I was sure that this was equally disgusting. So I dismissed it without ever trying it, or any of the other energy gels on the market. But Santa left some in my stocking, and seeing as how I'd had a hard time chewing my Shot Bloks during the Seawall half, I knew I needed to give these a try. So right around mile 3.5 on Saturday, I bravely tried a Chocolate Outrage flavor.


It was like eating a melted candy bar! What a delicious discovery! GU is good - who knew?!?

Now if I can just convince myself that "running to the grocery store" does not require sucking down a GU, I'll be in great shape. ;)

*Apparently you are supposed to disclose what you receive for free for reviews to the FTC, not the FCC. As I have been doing for the past year. Oops. Best intentions and all. ;)


  1. so many thoughts.
    the overarching being IM STILL GIGGLING about your comment at MizFit abt the FCC.
    Made my month.
    I wanna see the compression capris.
    Will we be receiving pics later or do I need to google?

    all that...

  2. Good Morning! I want to see those capris as well! Loved the hat with flaps. You continue to impress me with all your running~lol.

    That Santa, sometimes he knows better then we do.

    Have a great Hump Day!

  3. Thanks for taking the time to provide links as you know I'll have to check them all out. I also overdress. It's just so hard to walk out the door when you're still cold and NOT overdress. Ya know?

    Great times on the splits!! I still want to run like you when I grow up. :)

    I think I need some GU now. Yesterday I did an 18 mile bike ride and I could feel all energy leave me at the end. I needed something quick. Live and learn.

    Run, Shelley, run!! :D

  4. Good to know about the GU. I've been avoiding it for the very same reason.

    Compressions are the bomb, aren't they? I love them for running, biking and just cleaning house. Not that I work up that much of a sweat cleaning house, but you know.

    Happy Wednesday!

  5. I would have thought the same thing about the GU - the texture of some things (i.e. mushrooms!) just gross me out too - glad it worked out for you!

    And those are really good split times! You know, when I was running yesterday with my iPod, I definitely ran faster with more tempo songs - maybe you could find a play list for a 12:00 minute mile to keep you on track?

    Happy Hump Day!

  6. AS always, thanks for the info. Now that I am restarting the C25K, maybe I'll need it. Have a great day!

  7. I avoid Gu because it makes me sick to my stomach. Took me several long runs using it to realize THAT is what was causing my nausea. But when I was eating it, chocolate was my flavor! People should also know that it needs to be taken with plenty of water (sorry, can't help myself).

    So, now you have a hat with flaps, and gloves with flaps. What's next?

    Um, just in case you decide you can't keep those compression capris, I'm pretty sure a large would fit me. Just saying.

  8. Got a question for ya: I was checking out the links for the gear. I seriously need a jacket of some sort that also breathes. Does the Asics one cover the belly area? So many of these are just too short. I'm still uncomfortable showing my pooch.

    Have a great day. I rode my bike in my Armadillo Dash shirt yesterday and thought of ya. :)

  9. Kelly - yes, the Asics one is pretty long. I've had it for over a year and really like it a lot - it's the purple one shown in the picture from the last post.

  10. For my long runs, I always ate a chocolate chip cliff bar (or two) and always had GU! My favorite flavor is raspberry.

    Glad you tried it! I always drank it with water, not gatorade because then it did seem too sweet with that combo.

    That's some chilly weather for Texas!

  11. Great runs Shelley! I'm proud of you.

    I still haven't tried a gel because I didn't need it yet.

    I buy my running clothes online too but I buy most of my daily clothes online too because I don't like shopping (yes I'm really a girl but just one who doesn't like it :) )

  12. If our government communicated at all with each department we wouldn't have to worry about whether or not we contacted the FCC or the FTC. And you'd think the FCC could freakin communicate with the FTC but noooooo.

    This is why those towers got blown up and no one knew who had planes in the air and why GWB was sittin in the chair at the school with that dumb look on his face reading 'My Little Donkey' holding the book upside down and everyone in the country running around crying in horror.

    Wow. I need some anti anxiety meds.

    GU tastes like melted candy bars? Who knew?!

  13. Gosh Shelley you are a running queen! 11 minute miles for 9 miles?? I am so proud of you and in awe.

    I am skeered of the gels as well. I don't like gummy anything, so that is why I stick to coconut water ( or cupcakes)

  14. Tee hee hee. FTC.

    Love your wardrobe breakdown ... and your new GU discovery. Enjoy!

    Winks & Smiles,

  15. Dang- your times are awesome!
    A little disappointed that you didn't specify what color you wore with each of your links....eyesroll :)

  16. I'm loving your blog!
    I've been going through a rough patch since I hit my 40s and I have to say it took me a lot to get out of this rut.
    One thing that helped me a lot was a book by Sondra Wright, called 40+ and Fabulous.
    I got my self confidence back, and I am loving it.
    I'm still the same old me just with a burst of energy and self esteem.
    I'm glad you have your running! We all need that 1 thing we're good at and I'm still trying to find mine!
    Keep going and keep updating!!

  17. Hai girl,

    I was wondering just now: did you get a training schedule from your running group? If so and you have it digital do you mind mailing it to me? Reason I ask is that I might want to switch my training program and as it is 16 weeks till my half marathon I still have time to switch my program.

    Love to hear from you.


  18. In the Army, I could easily run 6 miles or more, but at a casual pace... Fast running, not so much.
    GU - who knew? Now what do you do with it?

  19. Forget about the schedule, I found a schedule this afternoon on the internet which is perfect for me.

  20. Thorlos. The best. I wear them to work... along with two pair of microfiber leggings under my pants, an UnderArmor shirt and microfiber shirt under my uniform, plus a sweater, and fleece jacket. Scarf, hat, and gloves... the only thing I need, because my ankles get cold, are leg warmers. I wonder if I could pick some up on Ebay? In the "Jazzercise Wear" catagory?


Comments are now moderated to prevent spammers from leaving, well, spam - but rest assured that as soon as I read a real comment, I will publish it. So please, comment away, even though the blog is officially closed. Thanks!