CIM Training Week 2 (of 12)

Monday: Rest.

Tuesday: Leg speed (aka strides) – 10 x 25 sec on/1 min off. Nice little workout to get the legs to turnover more efficiently. 5.9 miles @ 10:10/mile


I got to work and found a box of donuts on my desk. Best Tuesday ever!

Wednesday: 60 minutes easy. I just couldn’t get my act together, so I only managed 46 minutes of running. Wednesdays are technically my extra/optional running day for the training cycle, so I don’t feel that bad about cutting it short (just a tiny bit guilty). 4.5 miles @ 10:21/mile

Thursday: Short intervals 5 x 2 min on/1 min off. This was tougher than I expected. I was hoping to run around 8:00/mile for the “on” segments. What I ended up with: 8:26, 8:00, 8:15, 8:08, 7:46. Apparently, I was concentrating so hard that I didn’t realize I had finished 5 intervals, so I did an extra one by accident. Oops. 5.5 miles @ 9:40/mile

Friday: Rest. Glorious!

Saturday: Long slow distance 16 miles. Again, I switched my weekend runs around so that I could have company. This time, I convinced Layla and Kristen to meet me at the San Leandro Marina. Even though I’ve run here so many times, it’s nice to see it through a different pair (or pairs) of eyes. We ran 12 miles together before Kristen decided that her knee was in too much pain, and she needed to stretch and walk. Since I was short on time and still needed to cover 4 more miles, and because Layla kindly agreed to stay with Kristen, I went ahead and finished the run solo. I inadvertently did a semi-fast finish long run, with the last 4 miles all around 9:40/mile. Like last week, I felt pretty strong at the end, especially considering that I didn’t take any fuel during the run (water only). Another nice confidence booster! The one downside? Chafing. Ouch. 16 miles @ 10:06


Thanks Layla for the beautiful photos!

Sunday: 60 minutes easy. Slow, hot recovery miles around my neighborhood. I kept my heart rate below 140 (100% aerobic). 5.4 miles @ 11:11

Total mileage: 37.3 miles
How I’m feeling: It’s only week 2, but I’m already hungry all of the time and tired too, despite trying to make sure I fuel and sleep well.
Looking ahead to next week: I’ve got a long weekday run on Tuesday morning and the first true workout of the cycle – cruise intervals (6 x 1000 m) – on Thursday morning. Then, I’m topping it all off with an 18-miler on Sunday. I’m already planning my long run around what to eat afterwards.😉 #willrunforbagels

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Posted in CIM, Training

2016 Books: Q1

Some social media platforms are more useful than others. I joined Goodreads in late 2013 and have really enjoyed it. I like that it allows me to track my books, see what my friends are reading, and find new books. Two of the cooler benefits I’ve benefited from recently are giveaways and eBook deals. If you tell Goodreads about books you want to read, they’ll alert you if the publisher is giving away copies of the book, so you can enter a contest if you want. I managed to win a giveaway for My Brilliant Friend, which is quite exciting. Goodreads will also notify you if there’s a really good deal online. For instance, Running the Rift, which was on my “want to read” list, was on sale for only $1.99 in the Kindle store for 2 days. I snapped it up.

(By the way, all of the above is my personal opinion and not paid or part of a promotion. Just in case you were wondering.)

Anyway, the other great feature of Goodreads is setting annual reading challenges. Last year, my goal was 30 books, but I only read 23 since I also had a New Yorker magazine subscription. For 2016, I decided to try for 30 books again. I’m happy to report that I’ve just read my 30th book, and it’s only mid-September!

Since I’ve read a lot of books already, I decided to break down these book posts by quarters. Here are the books I read (in chronological order) from January 1st to March 31st:

henrietta-lacksThe Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks by Rebecca Skloot
Goodreads rating: 4.02 stars (out of 5); 345,000+ ratings
My rating: 3 stars
Categories: Non-fiction, science, ethics
Abbreviated Goodreads Summary: “From a single, abbreviated life grew a seemingly immortal line of cells that made some of the most crucial innovations in modern science possible. And from that same life, and those cells, Rebecca Skloot has fashioned in The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks a fascinating and moving story of medicine and family, of how life is sustained in laboratories and in memory…she tells a rich and haunting story that asks the questions, Who owns our bodies? And who carries our memories?” —Tom Nissley
My 2-cents: I started listening to the audiobook version of this about 6-7 years ago on my iPod, and then upgraded to an iPhone. I couldn’t figure out how to transfer the Audible file, so I never finished it. (Lazy, I know.) Anyway, so I finally got this book from the local library and finished it. I really enjoyed the first half of the book, but I felt like the second half dragged. I think the book does a decent job of describing why Henrietta Lacks’s cells are so special, yet also pointing out the ethical problems with how they were attained. The latter half of the book focuses on Henrietta’s children and grandchildren, and their general distrust of the medical profession. I thought it could have been more neatly edited, but that’s just me.

crazyrichasiansCrazy Rich Asians by Kevin Kwan
Goodreads rating: 3.65 stars (out of 5); 40,000+ ratings
My rating: 3 stars
Categories: Fiction, high society, East Asian
Abbreviated Goodreads Summary: “Crazy Rich Asians is the outrageously funny debut novel about three super-rich, pedigreed Chinese families and the gossip, backbiting, and scheming that occurs when the heir to one of the most massive fortunes in Asia brings home his ABC (American-born Chinese) girlfriend to the wedding of the season.”
My 2-cents: This is the classic “sneak peak into the upper class” genre but with an Asian (Singaporean) twist. The twist was what kept my interest. The characters and plot were interesting enough, but nothing too surprising or out of the ordinary. A fun, light read.

dearlifeDear Life by Alice Munro
Goodreads rating: 3.74 stars (out of 5); 20,000+ ratings
My rating: 4 stars
Categories: Fiction, short stories
Abbreviated Goodreads Summary: “With her peerless ability to give us the essence of a life in often brief but spacious and timeless stories, Alice Munro illumines the moment a life is shaped — the moment a dream, or sex, or perhaps a simple twist of fate turns a person out of his or her accustomed path and into another way of being. Suffused with Munro’s clarity of vision and her unparalleled gift for storytelling, these stories…paint a vivid and lasting portrait of how strange, dangerous, and extraordinary the ordinary life can be.”
My 2-cents: I upgraded this collection of short stories to 4 stars mostly because I think it’s really difficult to write a solid short story. I always felt a bit detached emotionally from the stories because of the setting (time period, characters, and geography), but I can’t deny that they are very well-written. Some of the stories will stay with me for a long time.

howbadHow Bad Do You Want It by Matt Fitzgerald
Goodreads rating: 4.21 (out of 5); 99 ratings
My rating: 5 stars
Categories: Non-fiction, essays, sports psychology, performance
Abbreviated Goodreads Summary: “The greatest athletic performances spring from the mind, not the body. Elite athletes have known this for decades and now science is learning why it’s true. In his fascinating new book How Bad Do You Want It?, coach Matt Fitzgerald examines more than a dozen pivotal races to discover the surprising ways elite athletes strengthen their mental toughness.”
My 2-cents: Probably my favorite Matt Fitzgerald book yet. Even if you don’t care about the sports psychology aspect of the book, which I thought was fascinating, the athlete profiles and stories in each chapter were riveting and inspiring. (Note: I heartily recommended this book to several running friends, who said they did *not* agree  with me about the riveting part, and promptly fell asleep every time they tried to read it. To each, his/her own!)

allthelightAll the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr
Goodreads rating: 4.31 (out of 5); 396,000+ ratings
My rating: 3 stars (more like 2.5)
Categories: Fiction, Historical (World War II)
Abbreviated Goodreads Summary: “Winner of the Pulitzer Prize. From the highly acclaimed, multiple award-winning Anthony Doerr, the beautiful, stunningly ambitious instant New York Times bestseller about a blind French girl and a German boy whose paths collide in occupied France as both try to survive the devastation of World War II.
My 2-centsI know a lot of people who loved this book; I was not one of them. I don’t have any severe criticisms, it just didn’t move or grab me. One thing that really bugged me were the short sentences. But otherwise, I thought the plot and characters were fine…nothing more, nothing less. It reminded me a lot of The Book Thief, actually, which I also didn’t love (but others did). 

goonsquadA Visit From the Goon Squad by Jennifer Egan
Goodreads rating: 3.64 (out of 5); 130,000+ ratings
My rating: 5 stars
Categories: Fiction, modern
Abbreviated Goodreads Summary: “Bennie is an aging former punk rocker and record executive. Sasha is the passionate, troubled young woman he employs. Here Jennifer Egan brilliantly reveals their pasts, along with the inner lives of a host of other characters whose paths intersect with theirs. With music pulsing on every page, A Visit from the Goon Squad is a startling, exhilarating novel of self-destruction and redemption.
My 2-cents4.5 stars, rounding up to 5 just because. I thought of it more as a collection of related short stories rather than a cohesive novel. Each chapter was compelling, unique, and added to the overarching web of characters. Also, there’s an entire chapter that’s a PowerPoint presentation!

12yearsTwelve Years a Slave by Solomon Northup
Goodreads rating: 4.14 (out of 5); 55,000+ ratings
My rating: 4 stars
Categories: Non-fiction, memoir, slavery
Abbreviated Goodreads Summary: “Perhaps the best written of all the slave narratives, Twelve Years a Slave is a harrowing memoir about one of the darkest periods in American history. It recounts how Solomon Northup, born a free man in New York, was lured to Washington, D.C., in 1841 with the promise of fast money, then drugged and beaten and sold into slavery. He spent the next twelve years of his life in captivity on a Louisiana cotton plantation.
My 2-cents: *audiobook version, read by Louis Gossett, Jr.*
Great first-hand account of slavery on top of a compelling chain of events makes this jump from 3 to 4 stars in my opinion.

empressEmpress by Shan Sa
Goodreads rating: 3.68 (out of 5); 4,500+ ratings
My rating: 2 stars
Categories: Historical fiction, China
Abbreviated Goodreads Summary: “A ravishing historical novel of one of China’s most controversial historical figures: its first and only female emperor, Empress Wu, who emerged in the Tang Dynasty and ushered in a golden age.
My 2-centsInteresting from a historical perspective, but I kept rolling my eyes at the over-the-top prose. I wonder if it was better in the original language (either Chinese or French)? (It seemed like a bad translation. A quick Google search revealed that the author speaks Chinese and French.)


furiouslyhappyFuriously Happy: A Funny Book About Horrible Things by Jenny Lawson
Goodreads rating: 3.94 (out of 5); 46,000+ ratings
My rating: 3 stars
Categories: Essays, Humorous, Quirky, Depression, Mental illness
Abbreviated Goodreads Summary: “In LET’S PRETEND THIS NEVER HAPPENED, Jenny Lawson baffled readers with stories about growing up the daughter of a taxidermist. In her new book, FURIOUSLY HAPPY, Jenny explores her lifelong battle with mental illness. A hysterical, ridiculous book about crippling depression and anxiety? That sounds like a terrible idea. And terrible ideas are what Jenny does best.
My 2-cents: I didn’t think it was anywhere as funny as Let’s Pretend This Never Happened. For people who suffer from paralyzing depression and anxiety, I think this book is probably awesome. I just couldn’t relate to it very well, and got a bit impatient with it after a while. Still, it was enlightening to read about the author’s experiences and I felt like it made me more sympathetic to those who struggle with mental illness.

everythingineverEverything I Never Told You by Celeste Ng
Goodreads rating: 3.76 (out of 5); 104,000+ ratings
My rating:4 stars
Categories: Fiction, Immigrant experience, Dark
Abbreviated Goodreads Summary: “Lydia is dead. But they don’t know this yet. So begins this exquisite novel about a Chinese American family living in 1970s small-town Ohio…A profoundly moving story of family, secrets, and longing, Everything I Never Told You is both a gripping page-turner and a sensitive family portrait, uncovering the ways in which mothers and daughters, fathers and sons, and husbands and wives struggle, all their lives, to understand one another.
My 2-cents: Well-written and great storytelling, but there was something about the prose that left me cold. Growing up in a predominantly white area, I related a lot to the Lee family in the book. (And not just because we share a last name.)

fatesfuriesFates and Furies by Lauren Groff
Goodreads rating: 3.56 (out of 5); 56,000+ ratings
My rating: 5 stars
Categories: Fiction, Relationships, Dark
Abbreviated Goodreads Summary: “Every story has two sides. Every relationship has two perspectives. And sometimes, it turns out, the key to a great marriage is not its truths but its secrets. At age twenty-two, Lotto and Mathilde are tall, glamorous, madly in love and destined for greatness. A decade later, their marriage is still the envy of their friends, but behind closed doors, things are even more complicated and remarkable than they have seemed.
My 2-cents: I don’t remember why I gave this book 5 stars (I didn’t write a review at the time), but I think I just really enjoyed it. I thought the storytelling was gripping and I loved the structure of the different perspectives. That said, I can see how not everyone would enjoy this book.

missoulaMissoula: Rape and the Justice System in a College Town by Jon Krakauer
Goodreads rating: 4.05 (out of 5); 21,000+ ratings
My rating: 4 stars
Categories: Non-fiction, Journalism, Criminal Justice, Sexual Assault
Abbreviated Goodreads Summary: “From bestselling author Jon Krakauer, a stark, powerful, meticulously reported narrative about a series of sexual assaults at the University of Montana ­— stories that illuminate the human drama behind the national plague of campus rape.
My 2-cents: In retrospect, I might bump that 4 star rating to a 5. I’ve referenced this book a countless number of times since I finished it. It’s such a well-rounded, well-researched piece, not just about college rape, but also the criminal justice process and acquaintance rape in general. One interesting fact I learned was that most people who commit acquaintance rape tend to be serial rapists, and educating police investigators of this fact may lead to more successful prosecution of these rapists. This is such a relevant, important topic, and I can understand how most people wouldn’t want to read about it (because it’s depressing, duh), but I think it should be required reading for all people, especially college students – men and women.

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Posted in Book review, Books

CIM Training Week 1 (of 12)

I’ve been staying away from weekly training recaps, because I think they tend to be a bit dry, but I’ll make an exception for CIM training because I usually like to go back and read details on how a particular marathon training cycle went.

Monday: Rest. Killed it. I ended up taking the day off from work because my little date with the sidewalk last Sunday caused me to not sleep well (due to pain in both knees). Then I realized I couldn’t fathom wearing real clothes or bending my knees. Oh, and late Sunday night, my right wrist started hurting. It seemed like I twisted it during my fall. Whomp whomp. Luckily, it was a pretty open day for me work-wise. Take the sick day when you can, that’s my motto.

Tuesday: 70 minute progression run, with last 20 minutes fast. Since my knees were still pretty tender, and my heart rate monitor was acting all crazy-like, I forgot about the progression run and took it very, very easy. 6.5 miles @ 10:43/mile

Wednesday: 45 minutes easy. I was originally supposed to run for 55-65 minutes, but considering this is the first week I’m bumping up from 4 to 5 runs a week, I erred on the side of caution. My heart rate was still high, but not as crazy as Tuesday. 4 miles @ 11:03/mile

Thursday: Fartlek run of 60 minutes with 10 x (1 min on/1 min off). This went off without a hitch, but I was surprised to look at my splits afterward and see the “on” paces start off at 8:30 (slower than I expected/felt) and get down below 8:00/mile by the end. I’ll be doing a lot of fartleks this cycle to keep me on my toes. 6 miles @ 10:10/mile

Friday: Rest.

Saturday: Long slow distance 14 miles. I’m supposed to do my long runs on Sundays, but I had the chance to run with Cathryn, so I swapped my Saturday/Sunday runs. We ran along the Bay Trail between Hayward and San Leandro and actually saw a fox! It was adorable! I managed to not take any fuel during the run, though I did have breakfast (a Picky bar). I’m trying to wean myself off bloks and gels during LSD runs to tap into fat burning. Last week was a bit of a struggle at 10 miles, but this week I felt pretty good through the end. I felt like I could’ve run a couple more miles, which is good because 16 miles is on tap next week! 14 miles @ 10:19


Look! A fox!

Sunday: 50-60 minutes easy. I opted for breakfast instead of running, so by the time I got around to my run, it was 12:30 and blazing hot outside. I don’t like the treadmill, but I like it better than running outside when it’s hot & sunny. (I know, I’m a wimp.) 5 miles @ 10:24

Total mileage: 35.5 miles
How I’m feeling: I think this is a good, solid start! My knees are feeling a lot better too.
Looking ahead to next week: Leg speed (strides) on Tuesday, longer fartleks on Thursday, and a 16 miler on Sunday. Bring it on!

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Posted in CIM, Training

Me vs. the Sidewalk

CIM training starts tomorrow! As an example of the kind of nerd I am, I wasn’t that excited until I set up my training plan spreadsheet. Filling in each box and envisioning the runs filled me with anticipation instead of dread – good news!

I did my best to savor this last week of unofficial training. Because I did my long run on Monday, which is usually a rest day, my schedule got a little screwed up. This is how my week played out, running-wise:

  • Tuesday: rest
  • Wednesday: alternating easy/marathon pace miles to get my body used to running stamina paces
  • Thursday: meant to do an early run, but scrubbed it because I was too tired to get up
  • Friday: I only had to work a half day, so I tried to take advantage of the free afternoon to go run at Lake Chabot. It was one of the worst runs I’ve had in ages, mostly due to the fact that I drank a whole can of La Croix sparkling water before the run. Holy crap. I felt like I had a sparkling water baby in my belly! I was super uncomfortable, and I will never, ever do that again.
  • Saturday: The best part about a crappy run is that the next one is almost sure to be better. Saturday’s run was indeed, pretty splendid, an easy run that ended up being a slight progression run without me trying.

And so, we come to the Sunday long run. With some tips from Layla, I headed out to the Iron Horse Trail from San Ramon. I’ve run the IHT several times; it sounds somewhat exotic, but it’s actually quite boring. However, it’s also nearly 30-miles long and mostly flat, so it’s pretty ideal for long runs. Anyway, I must’ve zoned out completely because I ended up tripping on a piece of uneven sidewalk. I totally ate it, scraping up my right knee, left knee, and the back of my right hand. A passing cyclist stopped and kindly gave me a wet nap to clean up, while apologizing for not having her normal hiking pack with her that contained a first aid kit. Her sympathy and kindness went a long way. Thanks, nice stranger lady!

I’m a pretty clumsy person who tends to get bruises all of the time without knowing how I got them. But the scrape on my right knee was pretty epic. It’s about 2 inches in diameter and was non-stop bleeding. I also scratched up my Garmin pretty badly. I was only 3.5 miles into my run and thought about turning around, but I decided to jog for a little while and see how my leg felt. Surprisingly, it was fine. It hurt more after I stopped, actually. So, I decided to soldier on, garnering strange looks from passing runners and cyclists on the IHT. I managed to finish 14 miles, as planned, and felt pretty strong.


Be glad that the bottom photo is out of focus

My knee is going to take a while to heal, but at least it’s superficial. I’m thankful that I didn’t hurt myself worse during my fall. It was a good reminder to pay closer attention while I’m running and also to pick up my feet!

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Posted in Training

The Kimchi Experiment

In all my years cooking and trying new recipes, there are a couple of things I’ve always been intimidated by. One of those things? Fermentation and canning. I know, they’re very different processes, but I put them in the same category because they both use jars. So, basically, I’m intimated by jars.😉

Last month, my friend Jess posted that she was making kimchi, the famous fermented vegetables of Korean origin. The recipe she used included napa cabbage and shredded daikon (radish) and carrots. You know how sometimes projects or goals seem really unattainable, but then you see someone else do it, and then it feels like it’s actually possible? That’s what happened to me with kimchi. All of a sudden, I was filled with a sudden urge to make kimchi too!  It helped that Jess was available to answer my questions, plus the recipe looked pretty reasonable. The kimchi project also justified purchasing the food processor that I’ve had my eye on. (Which, BTW, is great. Works well, cleans up easily. I love it.) I should note that you don’t *need* a food processor, but I hate shredding vegetables and this recipe called for a lot of shredding.

After obtaining all of the necessary ingredients from the store and washing all of my mason jars, I got to work. Altogether, it took me about 3 hours from start to finish to make the kimchi, about half of which I spent doing active work: chopping, mixing, and cleaning up. It would’ve been easier if I had bought the chili flakes as opposed to chili powder – unfortunately, the powder was all I could find. The powder was very fine and clumped up a lot, making it hard to spread evenly. Oh, Jess also told me that her kimchi turned out super spicy, so instead of using 1.5 cups of chili, I only used 1 cup.


At the start of the mixing process. If you look very closely, you can see the clumps of chili powder.

(Funny side note: while I was making the kimchi and had already added the chili powder, I freaked out thinking that I had bought the wrong thing. I texted both Jess and my Korean friend LGS in a panic, and both confirmed that I had bought the right stuff. Whew!)


Packed and ready to go!

After I put the kimchi into the jars (I ended up with 9), I left them in the laundry room, out of direct sunlight. I don’t know if that was important or not, but it seemed to be the right thing to do. I was supposed to “burp” them about every 24 hours, meaning I had to open the jars to let the air out. This is because during fermentation, the bacteria release gasses that build up and could cause a high pressure situation in the jar. As a scientist, I found this whole process really fun. The first day, there was a little bit of gas, but not many bubbles (similar to soda fizz). On the second day, there was both gas and bubbles, which was really exciting. On the third day, there was gas and less bubbles – which I made a video of (not so exciting). It was also the first day of the taste test. I was supposed to stick the kimchi in the fridge (and stop fermentation) if the kimchi tasted tangy and “fizzy”, which it did.

The next week, we ate 2 jars of kimchi in about 5 days! We’ve since slowed down. The nice thing is that the kimchi lasts for a year in the fridge, so we don’t have to barrel through it all at once (though it won’t take us a year to finish 9 jars). For the first couple of meals, we bought marinated meals from Mama Cho’s, a local butcher. One of our favorite combinations is bulgolgi (grilled marinated beef) with arugula. We ate it with rice and a healthy serving of kimchi. Several nights later, we did the same thing but with spicy pork (also from Mama Cho’s). Delish!


So simple, yet so tasty!

With leftover rice, I like to make fried rice… so you can probably predict the next thing we made: kimchi fried rice! With all of my Instagram posts and tweets about the kimchi, Hillary forwarded me a recipe for an easy and modern kimchi fried rice. I made it with kale and green onion – it was really good! Though next time, I’d like to add spam or some kind of salty meat.


Oh, and we topped off our kimchi fried rice with two farm-fresh fried eggs.

When I make kimchi again, I think I will add more fish sauce and maybe also some kind of salty fish. While the initial tang and the after taste of the kimchi was spot on, the middle notes left something to be desired. In my experience, that missing “fullness” is usually due to a lack of umami – and can be correcting by a savory base like broth or salted meat. Besides that one criticism, I think this is a great recipe and I would definitely recommend it!

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Posted in Cooking

Training for the Training

I know I said I’d write about non-running stuff – and I will! But first, a little training update. CIM is just under 13 weeks away, which means I’m only a week away from the start of official marathon training. In the past, I’ve followed training plans in the 16-18 week range, but I decided to go with a shorter 12-week cycle this time. Why? For one thing, I was really close to burn out at the end of Summer Breeze Half training. It turns out that continuously training throughout the year, with only 1-2 week breaks between goal races isn’t a great idea. (DUH.) So, I really needed these past 4 weeks to get out of training mode, sleep in a little, and *not* follow a plan.

Secondly, because I’ve been training all year, my mental and physical fitness entering marathon training probably exceeds any previous cycle by a long shot – maybe with the exception of Santa Rosa. Here’s a snapshot of what I can remember from past road marathons:

  • CIM (2012): Started running seriously that year, and entered training with my longest runs at 13 miles. I remember having back pain from my first 10-miler of the training cycle just because my core wasn’t used to regular long runs.
  • MCM (2013): Raced A LOT that year, but probably did too many of my runs too slowly and on trails. Hit the mileage goals in my training plan, but with little or no quality. Not enough race specific training.
  • Oakland Marathon (2014): This wasn’t a goal race – I got to run it for free and I thought I’d use it for a training run for Big Sur. Big mistake. I went out too fast and bonked pretty badly in the last 10 miles, then I had to take extra time off afterwards to recover.
  • Big Sur (2014): This was the weirdest training cycle. I got really fast, PR’ing at the half marathon distance 2 months before, but didn’t have a very strong aerobic base. I managed to do OK – not a personal worst, but it’s a tough course.
  • Santa Rosa (2015): I PR’d by 11 minutes with no road-specific training. All of my fitness came from training for the Big Basin 50K. It helped that I signed up only a month in advance and had no pressure going into the race.

Having trained and raced a 5K, 10K, and half marathon this year and PR’ing in all of those distances has built up my fitness and speed gradually over the course of 2016. I’m taking the lessons that I’ve learned about what kind of training best suits me into CIM training too.

Anyway, so the title of this post – “Training for the training” – comes from Greg McMillan. The idea is that you have to train your body for the training. Don’t go in cold turkey; e.g., doing Yasso 800’s in week 1 when you haven’t done *any* speedwork for weeks is probably a terrible idea (for most people). Most of my runs over the past two weeks have been in the easy/aerobic range; I wanted to keep my heart rate low as I recovered from a head cold. I was also back in base-building mode and wanted to increase my mileage gradually over a few weeks, going from 17 weekly miles (when I was still sick) to 25 miles last week to 30 miles this past week. This is so I don’t shock my system when I start doing 40 miles/week two weeks into my training plan. Also, this past week, I started to add a bit of speed, so as to get my neuromuscular system used to running faster again. I added short doses of speed with plenty of rest between intervals — strides to my run on Tuesday, and a set of 10 fartleks on Thursday.

The other part of my running “reset” has been seeking out new places to run and arranging for running dates. Last week, I ran 10+ miles with Cathryn in Foster City. Today, I ran almost 13 with Layla and Kristen in Pleasanton. Both times, the miles flew by and were so much more enjoyable than my usual solo slog at the Hayward shoreline. Plus, there was brunch after – always a good motivator!


Kristen and Layla running it in to complete 13 miles (after I was lazy and threw in the towel at 12.7)

One last week “off” before CIM training begins. Then it’s time to get serious!😉 Hope you’re all having a fantastic holiday weekend!

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Posted in Training

The Long Goodbye

So, some of you might know that I have a food blog. I just retired it yesterday, and the post is below. I’m reposting it here because there is some content relevant to the future of this space. I’ll be back soon with a running update and other news. Cheers!

poor scientist. will blog 4 food.

Hi there, to any people still reading this never updated blog — as you can tell by the diminishing number of blog posts, this space has been dying a slow creative death over the past few years. It’s no coincidence that the frequency of posts on willblog4food has been inversely correlated with the number of posts over at Running Tangents, my running blog. It turns out that, despite my love of writing, I only have so much to give. Or rather, I only *want* to write a certain amount. Now that I’ve created a third blog for work (started last summer), my blogging juices are trickling to an almost drought.

In the back of my mind, I always thought I’d come back to this space and start writing and posting photos about food again. For a long time, it was my passion to try new recipes and share with…

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On the docket…

10/2/16 - Tiburon Half (pacing)
10/9/16 - Healdsburg Half
12/4/16 - California International Marathon