Road to LA Marathon: September

Saturday, September 9: The Lexus LaceUp OC is here. My first race since the Marathon de Paris. I was a little nervous, because I’ve only run three (3) miles non-stop once since returning from Paris. In addition, I’ve had zero heat training and it’s been humid. I can’t worry about that now, I’m just so happy to be back to running races.

I ran the 5k event, I figured it be a good start to training since I took the summer off to recover. I picked up my packet on race day, I also picked up my free water bottle (and let me tell you, it’s a nice water bottle), and even filled it up with ice cold water. They had a table set up with different fruit infused waters. I see water with strawberries and it’s all mine.

The course I’ve run some of it before, because I use to live in Irvine and it’s where I first started training to run a mile and a half. It brought back a lot of good memories. The thing that brought it home for me was placing 23rd in my age division. I’ve never placed that high before.

Sunday, September 10: Race season has officially started, today is the Santa Monica Classic. I wasn’t expecting to PR or anything, I was just focusing on having fun on the course, my posture, and just running the race for me. This is one of my favorite races, and the course does have hills. I took it easy on the hills, and I did alternate running and walking. I made sure I wasn’t walking for very long. Why does it always seem like it take two (2) miles to reach the turn around? lol. Mentally, I still have problems focusing headed to the turn around because I see people running to the finish line and I want to join them. It’s something I need to work on, and I need to shift my focus off where the turn around is.

When I checked my results, I placed 71st in my age division. Wow, really!?!? This is twice in a row I placed in the top 100. I’ve never, ever placed in the top 100 before and I’m now on Cloud 9. Talk about motivation and inspiration, and the best part about it is, I created it by my accomplishments. That made my heart sing, I felt rejuvenated and I’m ready to go back to training.

Tuesday, September 12: After dropping my son off at school I was off to the gym for leg day. Its hard coming back, but its so worth it. I need to work on my fitness. With my knee still bothering me on and off, and not being in the gym for months, I did a light leg day. Today I did an hour workout which consisted of:

  1. Leg Press: Five (5) sets of ten (10) at 125 lbs (both legs and individual legs)
  2. Inner Thigh: One (1) set of fifty (50) at 40 lbs and One (1) set of fifty (50) at 58 lbs.
  3. Leg Curl: Five (5) sets of ten (10) at 145 lbs and five (5) sets of ten (10) at 80 lbs (individual legs)
  4. Leg Extensions: Five (5) sets of ten (10) at 101 lbs and five (5) sets of ten (10) at 71 lbs (individual legs)
  5. Outer Thigh: One (1) set of fifty (50) at 23 lbs and one (1) set of fifty (50) at 7 lbs
  6. Rotary Calf: Five (5) sets of twenty (20) at 344 lbs.

After a weekend of 5k races I felt great, and my glass is back to being full again. Its amazing how a couple of months of proper rest and recovery help so much. My batteries are recharged, and I’m getting back to being myself. On a side note, my legs were sore for the next two days. That’s a sign of a good leg day.

Friday, September 15: After dropping my son off at school, I was off to the gym. It was chest, and back today. Today was of course a light day, working my way back into the gym. When I finished the workout, took my protein shake and came home I was feeling it. My abs was feeling it too. Feels like I also engaged my abs during the workout, can we say bonus? Lol. Here’s the workout:

  1. Chest Press: Five (5) sets of ten (10) reps at 90 lbs.
  2. Lat Pulldown: Five (5) sets of ten (10) reps at 77 lbs.
  3. Deltoid Fly (Chest): Five (5) sets of ten (10) reps at 40 lbs (both arms together, then alternating individual arms)
  4. Deltoid Fly (Back): Five (5) sets of ten (10) reps at 40 lbs (both arms together, then alternating individual arms)

At first I was a bit disappointed because my workout was only 45 minutes, but then I quickly realized that in the past I’ve only done 10 minute workouts for chest and back. Even though today is another light workout, I am feeling it, and I’m surprised at how much I’m lifting especially since I haven’t been lifting for months.
I also went out for an early evening run.

Sunday, September 17: I’m taking today as a rest day, however, I decided to go for a short run. That was a great idea especially since I hadn’t ran since the Santa Monica Classic. Today, I decided I would just run with no distance in mind. It was hot, but not too bad today, I managed to run 1.26 mile with a .24 cool down walk for a total of a mile and a half. I have also developed my training plan to prepare for the Los Angeles Marathon, and it was put into action today.

Tuesday, September 19: This morning, I did not want to get up. My body was exhausted and I could feel it. I got up, and hit the gym. Today is leg day, and here’s the workout:

  1. Leg Press: Five (5) sets of ten (10) at 120 lbs
  2. Leg Curl: Five (5) sets of ten (10) at 30 lbs, and Five (5) super sets of fifteen (15) at 10 lbs for each leg individually
  3. Leg Extention: Five (5) sets of ten (10) at 58 lbs and five (5) sets of ten (10) at 58 lbs for each leg individually
  4. Inner Thigh: One (1) set of one hundred (100) at 28 lbs and one (1) set of sixty (60) at 46 lbs.
  5. Outer Thigh: Three (3) sets of fifteen (15) at 22 lbs and one (1) set of five (5) at 22 lbs.
  6. Standing Calf Raises: Two (2) sets of fifty (50) at 90 lbs.
  7. Stretched

My knee was bothering me slightly during the exercises, so I did bring the weights down today. Personally, I felt better to bring the weights down than to injury my knee again. I feel that it is weak, and I need to strengthen it.  Even though the weights were light, half way through, I was feeling it big time. I spent an hour and ten minutes in the gym today, working on my fitness.

Thursday, September 28: I must admit that my sinuses have been bothering me for a week now, and I’m happy that today my sinus congestion was a lot better. Today I took to the gym for chest, shoulders, and arms. Here’s the workout:

  1. Incline Press: Five (5) sets of ten (10) at 40 lbs.
  2. Bicep Curls: Five (5) sets of twenty (20) at 10 lbs.
  3. Shoulder Press: Five (5) sets of ten (10) at 10 lbs.
  4. Assisted Chin-Ups: Three (3) sets of six (6)

My arms were Jell-O by the time I was finished with that.

I also managed to get in a small run on the indoor running track. Sadly, two laps barely makes a quarter mile. I managed to run 0.47 at a 12:34 pace, I took it slow after not running for seven (7) days, before I was forced to stopped. My sinus congestion was coming on strong and it wasn’t pretty. I decided that I should be happy I got a run in, and tomorrow is a new day.

Saturday, September 30: Tonight was great! Even with my sinuses I managed to get in a one mile run, and for the last 400 feet I was running at an 8:10 pace! I am loving my new Orange Mud hat, and the new Orange Mud bottle for my hand held.

I had a break through tonight thanks to a friend. He sent me a video about how people are like garbage trucks and they dump all their “trash” on other people. That gave me what I needed to leave it all behind, and I managed to get out of my head during the run. It was exactly what I needed to get back to my old self.

Reflection: This month was a lot better, and I feel absolutely fantastic. I looks like I truly did need those two months off for rest. Even after taking seven (7) days off due to sinus congestion, it feels like training is back in full swing. Starting off slow, and I’ll be increasing next month. Let’s break this month down:

I must admit, coming back is not easy, but it is always worth it in the end. According to the race predictor on my Garmin, I seem to be in better shape than I thought. Time to bring those monthly miles up, those races times down, get stronger, and continue building up my endurance. October, will be a month of continued improvement.

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